Great to see Tracks and Trails featured in the Times Travel section. Journalist Richard Mellor picked our Chamonix Classic Trails running trip as an ideal activity break in the Alps. Enjoy a week of running with views of glaciers, and snowy peaks on trails that are an absolute joy!
The dates for all our 2024 and 2025 trail running holidays are live on the website.
For runners ready to move off-road and onto the trails, we recommend our Chamonix Trail Running Camp. This June trip accesses the mountain trails that Chamonix is legendary for at a time of year when the meadows are at their finest and filled with flowers. Tracks and Trails ill arm you with the tools to tackle the terrain change confidently.
More experienced trail runners will appreciate the opportunity to journey around Mont Blanc. So if you need a quick trail fix, there is our five-day Chamonix to Courmayeur long weekend in July or September.
Other options include the Tracks and Trails eight-day guided runs: Mont Blanc Ultra Trail, Trans Verdon in Haute Provence or the Alta Via 1 in the Italian Dolomites.
Our Bespoke Running Holiday options is always available too. Guests can share their running goals and Tracks and Trails will create the trip of a lifetime!
Interviewed for the Financial Times last month, Tracks and Trails owner and trail running guide Julia Tregaskis-Allen was asked for her opinion on whether sharing self-filmed videos of running narrow ridges is something the athletes and/or their brands should be taking any responsibility for.
“These athletes are most certainly pushing the extremes of running,” says Julia Tregaskis-Allen, a mountain running guide based near Mont Blanc. She describes the footage as “massively inspiring” but admits: “the consequences of a slip, trip or rock moving on a knife-edge ridge don’t bear thinking about."
“Any mistake would be fatal, but the subsequent concentration, skill level and thrill is part of the end result and pleasure.”
Fall Line magazine this month interviewed Julia Tregaskis-Allen and her husband Oliver Allen, an IFMGA mountain guide, to find out their Top 5 Summer Hikes.
Julia’s choices extend from Scotland to North Africa, making every trip different. At number one is the classic walkers Haute Route which traverses from Chamonix in France to Zermatt in Switzerland. A bucket list hike for many mountain walkers.
Next up is the Tour del Gran Paradiso in Italy which includes summiting the Gran Paradiso mountain at the end of the week. Heading down into Morocco, Julia’s choice is the Taghia Gorge it’s a rocky scramble that’s not for the faint-hearted. A narrow traverse built by Berber farmers for moving their goats, it’s a climbers’ route!
In Mallorca, the Serra de Tramuntana makes the top five with a route that runs from the coast through the high mountains and a UNESCO World Heritage Site before returning to the coast.
Last, but by no means least, is The Four Tops in Scotland. This challenge involves climbing all four peaks in the Cairngorm National Park in under 24 hours.
You can read the full interview below.
Tuscany is without doubt a wild and wonderful destination for those who like to walk in the mountains in relative solitude. Jagged ridgelines, and stunning limestone peaks, and often a whole mountain to yourselves. Journalist Sarah Stirling spent a week with our guests on our Wild Tuscany walking trips based at the beautiful Tuscan farmhouse of Col di Lavvachio.
The comment most often made by our guests is that the mountains were 'not what we expected', but in a good way! Do not imagine this is the rolling green hills of Chianti country. This is gorgeous mountain ridges, oak and beech woodlands, peaks and views all the way to the Mediterranean.
We hope you enjoy reading her article on the trip, which is attached below as a PDF, and that you will join us in 2017 to experience your own Wild Tuscany adventure.
Trail Running mag went off-road in Chamonix with the Torq Trail Team and guided by Julia from Tracks and Trails this summer. Reviewed here written by Claire Maxted of Trail Running Magazine Julia led a 3-day camp for a group of endurance runners on their first Alpine trails & altitude experience.
Written by Trail Running Magazine’s journalist Claire Maxted, with photographs by Roy Belchamber, the article explores the concept of how to “run uphill quicker than ever before” by training at altitude. A goal for most runners, this piece follows the adventures of the Torq Trail Team when they joined Tracks and Trails Julia Tregaskis-Allen on their first alpine training weekend in the French mountain town of Chamonix at the foot of Mont Blanc.
As Julia explains, “The Alps is a natural rollercoaster of mountains where you can happily train on beautiful, well-used and easily-navigable footpaths at altitude.”
The feature highlights the ups and downs of training at altitude including comments from Professor John Brewer. “Current thinking is that altitude training works,” he says. It conditions your body to create more red blood cells because of the lower oxygen pressure. Two weeks is better, but recreational runners will start adapting in three or four days, and the increased oxygen delivery to your muscles makes you run faster. It’s most effective at 2000+m, so you can’t just go to Chamonix and run along the valley floor.”
Written in 2013, you can follow the Torq Trail Team’s mountain running adventure in full by downloading the article below. It includes their experience of long climbs and mountainous descents – as well as a night spent at altitude in a high mountain refuge in the Mont Blanc Massif complete with sunset views.
Julia also gives her thoughts on the use of poles and the correct technique for deploying them when heading uphill or down.
If you are inspired to add mountain trails to your training programme, then Tracks and Trails offer a summer trail running camp in Chamonix. Delivered by expert coaches, it delivers key trail running skills to boost personal performance on the trail or on the road.
Tracks and Trails Chamonix Trail Running Camp and other running adventures have been featured by a host of journalists over the years.
From The Telegraph Magazine’s feature in February 2012 by Francesca Syz entitled “Four of the best fitness holidays” to a trail running in the Alps review by the Guardian Newspaper. Entitled “Stretch your legs – and your concept of running – with a trail-pounding camp in the shadow of Mont Blanc,” the Guardian piece was written by Susan Greenwood.
Our trail running guide and expert, Julia Tregaskis-Allen was joined by journalist Sarah Stirling for a recce of a run across the Jura which she wrote about for the Adventure Travel Magazine.
Katy Dartford also discovered the thrill of off-road running with Tracks and Trails which she reported for Travel Extra’s Outdoor Fitness feature.
Joining a group of like-minded trail runners intent on exploring new territory, improving their skills and enjoying a sociable holiday at the same time is a great option for those new to the sport.
It is also a brilliant option for single travellers who will always share with someone of the same gender in a twin bedroom (so, two single beds in one room). Single rooms are also an option, if available, but will attract a supplement. For Chamonix-based holidays we aim to book a hotel with pool and/or spa, so you get the best of both worlds!
Download The Telegraph Magazine’s by Francesca Syz using the link below.
We have just had an article written by Lindsay about snowshoeing published on the UKhillwalking.com site. If you would like to try snowshoeing, or even if you are a fan already, then this gives you a good feel for the enjoyment to be had of a walk in winter.
The thing about boys and new toys is that they always have to push them to the limits. Sometimes give an 'old boy' a new toy and he will be even more determined to see just exactly what it can do. On this particular occasion my 'other half' was crunching his way across a neve slope with the prospect of a very quick freefall descent to Chamonix if he blew it. The annoying thing was that I was supposed to be introducing him to snowshoeing! It had somehow turned into him showing me how it should be done. I wonder if any other mountain folk have had the same experience with their partners
Most of us like achieving a challenge, be it big or small. As a runner much of the time the goal is centred around a time, pace or distance. However for a mountain marathon there is a lot more to consider. In 2009 I wanted to run the Everest Marathon, and the main goals for this event is to reach Everest Basecamp healthy and acclimitised.
Read my top tips on trail running at altitude some of which are featured in this months 'Trail Running Magazine' - see attached article.
"What is it like to go out into Scotland's hills with little or no sight? Lindsay Cannon spends the day with a group of visually impaired walkers who rely on their four other senses."
Blind Summit will be broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland, on Monday, 13 December at 1530 hrs, that is, of course, 1630 hrs in Chamonix! Lindsay recently spent a day out with visually impaired hillwalkers in the Cairngorms and recorded their experience for radio. Yes, once again the Tracks and Trails team have been featured in the media.
For more information or to listen to the programme click on Blind Summit
The Guardian Green Travel List for 2010 has selected Tracks and Trails as one of their top 75 eco-friendly travel companies. Journalist Tamsin Omond visited Chamonix last week and featured us in the Guardian Newspapar's Travel section today and ONLINE. The piece, featuring travel companies that care for the environment wanted an insight into accessing the 'back country' with little impact to the environment. See below for Tamsin's review on her day out with us.
Tracks and Trails has made the headlines again featuring on the front page of the winter edition of the Austrian Alpine Club newsletter. Club member John Dixie wrote an excellent article about his trip in 2009 with Tracks and Trails in the Champex area of Switzerland.
The trip was fully booked with Club members who spent a week exploring the peaks and cols of the Valais region. This included a night at the world famous Grand St Bernard Monastery which seemed to be enjoyed by all. The Monastery, which has welcomed travellers and pilgrims for a thousand years, is totally isolated in the winter months by heavy snowfall. It can only be accessed by those willing to make the effort to travel on snowshoes or touring skis and as such provides a magical winter trip. This year we are in fact featuring a night at the Monastery in our Mont Blanc Snowshoe weeks based in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley.
The newsletter also featured an article by Lindsay looking at the different types of snowshoes and other equipment needed to travel in the winter mountains.
This year the Austrian Alpine Club snowshoe week will be in Etroubles in Italy. There are still places available!
Tracks and Trails featured in The Sunday Telegraph last weekend. Richard Hammond, author of www.greentraveller.co.uk and 'Clean Breaks - 500 new ways to see the world' (published by Rough Guides) wrote a fantastic travel article on alternative winter breaks.
For the article click here:
Richard Hammond - Winner of the British Travel Press Awards, Travel Editors’ Green Award 2009
Travel Editor of National Geographic magazine’s new Green magazine supplement
Founder of greentraveller.co.uk: "The leading British website for eco travel - great for news, green travel tips and inspiration for a low-impact holiday." The Times
Altitude with Attitude! Talk about a 'runner's high - read how journalist, Antonia Kanczula, enjoyed her first trail runs in the Alps. Antonia learned how to run like a mountain goat in the beautiful French Alps. As a result Tracks and Trails was featured in the September issue of Health and Fitness Magazine.
Following our June trail running week last year, World Champion Athlete & Mountain Leader, Lizzy Hawker was interviewed by the Observer newspaper. Lizzy, a sponsored athlete, coaches with Julia on the Tracks and Trails summer trail running week. Her passion to run, race and discover the mountains is inspirational. Download and read all about her training, background and next ventures in the Observer newspaper.
Tracks and Trails has recently been on BBC radio when Julia spent a day walking in the Chamonix Valley with presenter, Mark Stephen.
She's too modest to write this, so I am going to instead! Julia did a fantastic job taking radio presenter Mark Stephen for a day out in the Chamonix Valley and introducing him to alpine walking. The two set off from the Aiguille du Midi cable car station climbing up to the mid station before getting off and heading along the beautiful 'balcony' walk to Montenvers, above the fabulous Mer de Glace. The end result was a chance to 'listen in' to the two of them making thier way high above Chamonix on this classic walk which since Victorian times has delighted mountain lovers. Julia came across really well as she introduced Mark to the area, providing lots of information which covered everything from the flora and fauna, to local culture and history. It was a great example of an International Mountain Leader in 'full flow' enthusing about her surroundings and the wonderful opportunites they provide to experience the Alps. ...Lindsay
A BBC film crew from 'The Adventure Show' joined us for a winter walk on Mont de l'Arpille in Switzerland.