The nights are drawing in but a day of good weather has given a great opportunity for evening running in wonderful conditions.
Grabbing the opportunity to squeeze in a late evening run I picked up a friend and we headed out to the nearest part of the Peak District for a twilight run. The sun was setting by the time we started but there was just enough light to run without torches for 20 minutes or so. The light was fantastic, salmon pink in the west merging to shades of turquoise and a deep indigo to the east above the city lights starting to shimmer in the distance.
Running into the sunset
We picked our way through the heather visiting the Ox Stones, eyes gradually adjusting to the increasing darkness before we finally had to put on our head torches. Running past the trees of Lady Canning's plantation, bats flitted about overhead catching our peripheral vision but changing direction too quickly in the gloom for us to get a proper look.
When running with a head torch your world shrinks to the pool of light immediately ahead of you and your concentration increases as you focus carefully on your footsteps. We ran along the edge of the woods with the neon glow of the city behind us, enjoying the tranquillity that is so special to the Peak District; close to the city yet remote.
Peak District night running with city lights behind
Running through the woods we lost the last of the light and were totally reliant on our torches to pick out the terrain ahead although the clear path didn't present too many obstacles and we were able to maintain a reasonable pace. The beauty of night running is that it forces to slow down and become more in tune with your senses, your awareness heightened compared to running in daylight.
We were soon back at the car and off back towards the city leaving the moors and woods behind, glad to have experienced them as few other people do and looking forwards to venturing out again after dark.
Night Running through Lady Canning's plantation.
A big thank you to Justin Grainge for the photographs.
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