Irish Mountain
Running Association

New Member questions

Pamela Kearney SkaufelJun 17 2021, 10:28pmHi. New member here. I joined IMRA with the intent of doing some ‘mountain running’ when I come back to Ireland to visit. I will be home for most of July and wanted to know what events you would recommend for a ‘beginner’ in Irish trail running. I am not a beginner ‘runner’ per se, but I really want to get out to the hills more. I will be in Limerick but happy to drive anywhere. How do I get hooked up with someone who knows what they are doing for my first couple of races and which ones ?
Thanks. Pamela (
Alice ClancyJun 18 2021, 9:20pmHi there Pamela,
You're very welcome to IMRA!

A great way to start is to sign up for some of the shorter or trail races - For example Prince Williams Seat, Bweeng (sold out) or Forth Mountain this weekend. Next week Scarr and Sorrell hill will give you a lovely introduction to a bit more mountain-ey running. I don't know the Corrin route but it looks like a handy one to try too. If you are into longer distances, the Ballyhoura series that has just opened for registration today is a lovely route and quite manageable trail wise if you have the strength and fitness (the climb is a leg-killer!), as there is no open mountain sections. All of these races are fully marked and marshalled.
The key is to take it handy in your first few races until you get a feel for it - it takes a while to build up the balance needed for taking on the rockier and uneven trails/open mountain at any sort of pace...and it is very easy to roll an ankle or worse. Taking the early start option can be great as you get to go out on the course with others taking it at a handy pace, and then when the main field catch up you can run amongst faster runners and start to pick up some technique. The early starters are also renowned for having the best chats too!

A good way to get to know people and to figure out technique, gear etc is to volunteer at one of the races- while volunteering you end up talking to mountain runners of all levels and can pick up some useful tips on races to try, what runners to use etc.

Online, the facebook groups IMRA (unofficial), IMRA Munster, Cork and Kerry Trailrunners, South Leinster Trailrunners are a good starting point.

Best of luck with starting out and hopefully see you at a race soon!
Erik SalholmJul 14 2021, 5:52pmHi Alice,

In the same boat (somewhat) as Pamela.

I'm returning to Ireland this Autumn and hoping to run in the Winter League in Leinster. Am I right in thinking that that will start in January (all being well with COVID etc.)?

Also are there any races in Leinster after September?