2019 marks 100 years of the Forestry Commission, which the organisation is marking with a range of activities to celebrate the nation’s forests – including a centenary 10k running series, Forestry 100, taking place across the country throughout 2019.
Set across 16 different forest locations, the Forestry 100 running series allows you to experience the freedom, fresh air and scenery of running in the nation’s forests. You can choose any individual 10km event or take up the Forestry 100 Challenge and run 100km of forest trails throughout the series.
There are 16 events as part of the series:
1. Bedgebury, National Pinetum & Forest – The tree lovers’ paradise – Sunday 31 March
This is a beautiful run through the National Pinetum and Forest past impressive conifers and picturesque lakes. Enjoy the challenging inclines and muddy tracks and listen as the crowds cheer you on for the finish!
2. Hamsterley Forest – The Northern one – Sunday 7 April
The Hamsterley 10k leads runners from gentle forest paths to forest trails that will test endurance levels. Runners will be rewarded with magnificent views across the forest and the North Pennine Area of Natural Beauty.
3. Whinlatter Forest – The beauty and the beast – Sunday 12 May
As England’s only true mountain forest, hills are unavoidable on this 10km course. Aptly nicknamed ‘the beauty and the beast’, if you take on the challenge of Whinlatter Forest, you’ll be rewarded for your efforts with stunning views. You may even catch sight of a red squirrel, roe deer or even an osprey!
4. Dalby Forest – The rugged one – Sunday 19 May
The terrain in Dalby Forest is very dramatic and rugged. With climbs, descents, viewpoints and hidden trails, the 10km route is an off-roaders’ paradise.
5. Cannock Chase – The fragrant one – Saturday 25 May
You can’t ignore the sweet smell of pine as you’re running the 10km trail at Cannock Chase forest. A great course for those new to trail running with some gradual long climbs to test your endurance.
6. Wyre Forest – The scenic one – Saturday 8 June
One of the largest remaining oak woodlands in England, Wyre Forest offers a vast area of natural beauty. The 10km course is both picturesque and punishing with an infamous climb towards the end of the trail which is known locally as ‘cardiac hill’.
7. Alice Holt – The atmospheric one – Sunday 16 June
Alice Holt 10k is a single loop through a wonderfully diverse forest on a multi-terrain course that uses off-road tracks, cycle paths and woodland trails. The great atmosphere provided by the forest and your supporters will help you combat the challenging hills along the route.
8. Haldon Forest Park – Butterfly bliss – Sunday 23 June
Stunning panoramas and rare wildlife are not in short supply at Haldon Forest. This 10k route will reward runners with expansive views across Exeter and beyond, before winding through dedicated butterfly habitat, where keen-eyed spotters can glimpse the scarce Pearl-bordered fritillary.
9. Wendover Woods – The hilly one – Sunday 30 June
Wendover Woods offers a hilly course for those looking for a challenge. The stunning scenery and the steep climbs will definitely take your breath away on this very scenic 10km route.
10. Forest of Dean – The hidden gem – Sunday 8 September
Veiled in the heart of the Forest of Dean, Mallards Pike Lake, where this trail begins, lies steeped in history and nature. The 10km trail undulates its way through the forest on a mixture of hard stone paths, forest tracks and singletrack sections. Keep your eyes peeled for the abundance of wildlife in the expansive woodland.
11. Westonbirt, The National Arboretum – The tree champion – Saturday 14 September
Held in one of the world’s finest botanical collection of trees and shrubs, the 10km route at Westonbirt will lead participants through beautifully designed and picturesque landscape. Runners can enjoy a fast single lap course, all on high quality gravel tracks except for a short section of tarmac.
12. High Lodge, Thetford Forest – The PB – Sunday 6 October
Are you looking to set a new personal best? High Lodge is a very flat forest with even paths allowing you to build up your speed. If you’re new to running then High Lodge is also the perfect destination for your first 10km race. You can experience beautiful forest surroundings without the fear of a hill at the last stretch!
13. Salcey Forest – The fast one – Saturday 12 October
With little elevation across the whole site, runners will enjoy the fast, firm pathways that provide ideal conditions for both novice and more experienced runners. Make sure you keep your eyes peeled for ‘Elephant Pond’, named after two circus elephants that enjoyed bathing in the water while helping transport trees during the war.
14. Sherwood Pines – The historic one – Sunday 20 October
The 10km trail at Sherwood Pines leads you through Robin Hoods old stomping ground. The route takes you along Catchums Hollow (as it is now known) which back in the day was called Pittance Dale. It’s easy to imagine Richard the Lionheart meeting Robin Hood and his merry men here as he rode from Nottingham to the Palace in Kings Clipstone in 1193.
15. Thames Chase – The great London escape – Sunday 10 November
Thames Chase provides a unique woodland setting right on the eastern edge of London. Looping around the quick, flat course, runners can enjoy some fast downhill sections while weaving their way through the orchards and wildflower meadow.
16. Jeskyns Woods – The fruity one – Saturday 7 December
The 10km at Jeskyns is winding, circular route through brand new woodland and wildflower meadows. Identify the different fruits growing within the newly planted orchards as you run past on the quick and compact wide pathways.
Sign up at www.forestryengland.uk/run100