Irish Mountain
Running Association

Wicklow Glacier Lakes (solo)

Forum Messages

Graham K. BusheFeb 14 2019, 8:46pmHi, I notice that the Glacier Lakes solo is not listed as part of the long distance championship this year. Is this intentional? (Stone Cross to Lug solo wasn't on it last year) This is a super race and was great to have it as part of a league. It's good to include other races too but a shame if it means that these have to be left off. Though it is a bit late, would any consideration be given to include it? Regards, Graham
John MurrayFeb 15 2019, 1:35pmSurprised you're only noticing that now Graham! :)

I agree, both Glacier Lakes and Stones are 2 of the best races on the calendar and was surprised not to see at least one of them on this years long distance championship.

On a positive note it forces us Dubs away from the comforts of the Dublin/Wicklow Mountains down to Cork for a bit of unkown! lol
Lillian DeeganFeb 17 2019, 10:01amComing back to your IUC Q Graham - Yes is me reply. The noted 2019 IUC events are indeed intentional. When planning the line-up for these Champs last Sept., we purposely opted to spread the love about the varied counties as best we could for this year. I reckon us goat suckers have had it somewhat handy (tounge in cheek) since IMRA added this Championship aspect to the calendar. So for the mo, the line up as it shows presently to give/ allow for a little flavour of what IMRA has to offer for our 2019 IUC races. Come the next round of planning for 2020 - all will be reviewed once again for sure.
Robert CarneyMar 12 2019, 6:48pmWicklow Glacier Lakes 2019

Hey all,

Payment for entrants/teams will open at midnight tonight for the Glacier Lakes race and will close at 18:00 hours on Thursday 11th April.
I have updated the links to the entry form and entry list.

If you can please download and email back the completed entry form to:

The same form can be used for the relay and the solo.
Both online payment and the entry form are required by the above date to take part in this event.
I will update the entrants list as received so everyone will be able to check that they are included.

Other than that, a recce of this highly enjoyable route is recommended for anyone unfamiliar.

Any questions please post on the forum.

John MurrayMar 13 2019, 12:00pmGood man Rob for taking on role of RD! :)

One of the best open mountain races on the calendar...can't wait!
Robert CarneyMar 24 2019, 9:01amHi folks,

It is 3 weeks out until the Glacier Lakes Race and I am putting a shout out for volunteers.
We need people to man the 3 checkpoints and also a first aider at a minimum.
Also drop bag transport.

Any help greatly appreciated.

Ryan PaetzoldMar 24 2019, 3:48pmHi all,
nooby question here,
1. how unmarked are the trails?
- completely wild,
- a mix up of existing routes

2 is or does someone have a gpx I can refer to as part of a recce?

3. would it be ill-advised to select this event with novice map reading skills?

The distance isn't a concern, it's the ending up off grid and having to call a friend aka the kind folk at DMR, alternatively if there is a known group of runners who would be happy for me to tag along?

Jason DowlingMar 24 2019, 4:33pmHi Ryan,

In answer to you queries:

1) The trails are very faint at best. Leg 1 for the first half just follows a set route but once you cross the road heading for Lough Ouler you are into open mountain and no trails what-so-ever. Leg 2 and 3 are both generally open mountain and these could cause any 'nooby' great difficulty especially if the weather is poor and/or the cloud is low. Leg 4 in the main has good trails and is the easiest leg of the whole route.

2) I have a GPX somewhere and I'll see if I can dig it out later on. However, be wary of what a GPX looks like on a map compared to what the actual terrain is like in reality.

3) In the main, yes it would be ill-advised to select this event with novice map reading skills. If bad weather comes in on leg 2 and/or 3 then you could be in a lot of trouble very quickly. Also, you mention calling the kind folk at MR. Depending on your network, that may not be possible at various stages within some (or most) of the legs so you can't always rely on that option either as coverage can be sketchy at best over sections on this route. If you're thinking about doing this race as a solo, then you need to be fully prepared to be on your own for each of the legs (especially legs 2 & 3).

Also, you finialise that distance isn't a concern but I would tend to disagree a little. While 42km may not be considered a 'long' distance on the road, 42km over this route is a tough call even for seasoned mountain runners, so saying that the distance is no problem is probably being a little naive about the terrain that needs to be covered (and 42km is probably the optimal route distance which could drag you through some very unsavoury/difficult terrain). Many a person has completed this route with over 42km covered due to nav errors!!

Hope that helps,
Ryan PaetzoldMar 24 2019, 7:10pmHi Jason,
Cheers for the honest feedback and advice. Deffo some skills to improve on for next year, no lemme scour the calendar...

John MurrayMar 24 2019, 10:44pm@Jason - Wicklow Glacier Lakes is now designated non-GPS (NG) and the use of any electronic device to aid route finding will be prohibited. Not that you need it Jason! ;)
Robert CarneyMar 25 2019, 1:13pmHi Ryan,

I know Jason has covered all the bases, but I'll add my two cents briefly.

I would definitely suggest a recce of Legs 1,2 and 3 unless you were a highly experienced navigator on open terrain such as that found on these legs.

The best form of recce for this race is to go out with your map and compass in both good and bad weather days and if you have a GPS device you can record where you go. Try and avoid viewing the GPS until at home.
When you review your route (GPS versus Map and compass bearings) you will get to see were you went in relation to were you thought you were going, how direct you travelled in relation to compass bearings, etc.
By doing it this way you will learn from your mistakes in your own time and hopefully not go missing on race day.

Hope this helps.

John: I'd say Jason is well aware of the NG rule, he was probably only offering the GPX to assist Ryan with his Recces as was requested.
Richard NunanMar 25 2019, 1:46pmJust to backup Robs points here. These are tough legs, good to get out there and look at the features. On these legs there is also faster lines to be had, so its worth doing the ground work.

The shorter the time looking at the map or being able to run on a bearing on the day will definitely get you round quicker. LEG 4 - is easily recced and worth it for a faster descent on the day - it keeps changing up there !!

Get out on this hills - its fun!
John MurrayMar 25 2019, 1:48pmI know he is Rob! ;) I was just poking the stick at Jason aka 'The Mountain Magician' as Tom Roche calls him! lol
John MurrayMar 25 2019, 2:02pmI'd agree with Richard, I find that in doing the recce's and building a mental map in my head of the features, land gradients, different types of growth on the ground, fastest lines etc. means that on race day I can more of less run start to finish without map or compass and even if I need to deviate slightly for whatever reason I still don't need to look at my map.

The above is true on condition the weather is decent. You can be assured that once the weather turns bad, and it can and does quite quickly then its a whole different ball game! :)
Jason DowlingMar 25 2019, 10:03pmHi Ryan,

I've uploaded a GPX of the route I took in 2018 at the following URL: I should make clear from the outset that this is just one of a multitude of routes that could be taken. I certainly wouldn't do this route again in it's entirety but I'll let you decide on what the good bits and the bad bits are.

Further to my original response, for the vast majority of IMRA races, a pariticpant can simply rock-up on the day and get around the route. The Glacier Lakes is not one of those races. For my first Glacier Lakes race, I basically done what Rob and Richard have already suggested and done a decent amount of recces prior to race day around the route. I always studied the GPX after the recce as well to help identify improvemnts and also mistakes.

You'll also notice that the weather gets a mention in a few of the previous posts and with good reason. I think it was two years ago, I was out reccing the whole route (was either one or two weeks before race day) and the weather that day was dire. Got through leg 1 handy enough. Leg 2 was a totaly different kettle of fish and the weather was much worse than forecast. I made it through leg 2 but abandoned leg 3 due to the weather and just took the leg 4 route back to the car. Visibility on leg 2 was reduced to roughly 20 metres in storm conditions. If you had to rely on your phone for directions, you were in big trouble. In saying that, on race day that year, the weather was glorious and I remember getting sunburnt on the day!!

Overall, I'd definitely recommend you trying this race some-day as in my own opinion, it's one of the best races in the IMRA calendar. A lot more work has to go into your preparation compared to most other IMRA races, but it's defintiely worth it. You get to see parts of the Wicklow mountains that most other races avoid and on a good day, you get some spectacular scenery. As Richard says, "it's fun" and indeed it is though that may not be what you're
thinking when you're climbing up to Art's lough!!

Hope that helps and enjoy the recces..
Conor O'FarrellMar 29 2019, 12:17pmWhat are the race legalities around Leg 1? I seem to recall that you were not allowed to run along the road beyond a certain point.
Jason DowlingMar 29 2019, 12:41pmIf my memory is correct you have to leave the road @ T095 991. This is where St. Kevin's way intersects with the road.
Jason DowlingMar 29 2019, 12:46pmCheck the race event page for leg 1. Rules state that only part of road that can be run on is where St. Kevin's way uses the same stretch of road.
John MurrayMar 29 2019, 1:05pm------------------------------------------------------

My understanding Conor is that you can physically cross the road at ANY point along the R756 but the only section of the road you are actually allowed to run on is the section which Jason refers to i.e. where St. Kevins Way uses the road. It's about 700m of roadway.

Conor O'FarrellMar 29 2019, 1:37pmThanks guys. I was having a blind moment there where I could not see it in black and white in front of me on the event page. Lord help me when I try to find it on the map. ;-)
Colm AustinApr 1 2019, 1:39pmI see that the race is non-GPS... Does this rule out using a Garmin on the solo event... and applicable also if in the non-competitive start?
John MurrayApr 1 2019, 1:53pm-------------------------------------------------------

Hi Colm, yes you can use your Garmin for basic functions like distance traveled, time, speed or altitude. Also you are allowed to record your race for post-race analysis.

What you are not allowed do is use your Garmin to find your way i.e. viewing of maps or having a preset route uploaded to the device.

Here is the topic which might give you more info.

Colm AustinApr 1 2019, 3:34pmThanks John
Garrett KellyApr 2 2019, 12:42pmHi Rob,

I am available as a volunteer for the relay/solo races if you are still in need. I'm only new to this so probably helper or marker would be best suited for me. I've no number to message you but you can message me on 0897022421 if you still require volunteers


Robert CarneyApr 2 2019, 2:42pmHi Garrett,

I have added you onto the solo page as a helper.
Thanks for volunteering your time.

Colm AustinApr 5 2019, 1:04pmWanted to check, will there be any water available at the checkpoints (or even the option to have a drop bag?) or should I plan to carry what I need from the start?
Robert CarneyApr 5 2019, 3:28pmHi Colm,

Small non-returnable drop bags will be accommodated, I will make provision to have an amount of water available at checkpoints.

Robert CarneyApr 5 2019, 7:10pm-----------------------------------------------------------
FAO Volunteers.

I have sent out an email to all volunteers and will follow up with a more specific plan closer to race day.

Anthony BradleyApr 6 2019, 6:18pmHey guys does anyone know how to get the entry form? I have the event paid for but when I click the link for the entry form it's opening an Excel spreadsheet. Is anyone else having this problem? Appreciate any feedback so I can get it sorted before the closing date thanks.
Robert CarneyApr 6 2019, 7:23pmHi Anthony,

I have received forms off plenty of people so not sure why the link isn't working for you.
My suggestions:
1. - Check that you have clicked the correct link (not the entry list link) which will bring you to the dropbox containing the entry form.
2. - If that does not work, send me a mail at and I will send you a copy of the entry form which you can send back to me.

Robert CarneyApr 9 2019, 9:18amHey, good people of IMRA.

I have had two volunteers pull out due to unforseen circumstances.
I could do with one more volunteer if anyone is willing.

Igor Gonzalez-GuridiApr 9 2019, 1:21pmHi Rob,
I'm available if required. I'll put my name on the helper's list.
Igor Gonzalez-GuridiApr 9 2019, 1:22pmHi Rob,
I'm available if required. I'll put my name on the helper's list.
Robert CarneyApr 9 2019, 5:01pmHi Igor,

Thanks a lot for volunteering.

Mikey FryApr 11 2019, 5:42pmHey rob how much of the race gear do you have for this race?need to pick up gear at some stage when your finished please ....
Thanks mikey
Robert CarneyApr 11 2019, 7:02pmMikey,

I have all the kit.
You can take it off me when your done in Glendo.
I might need to hang onto the first aid kit till everyone is finished, but I'll get it to you after that during the week or something.
Give me a shout Sunday and we'll get it sorted.

Lillian DeeganApr 11 2019, 9:17pmHi all,

With a nice tidy head count in for the Solo and Relay this weekend, I'm on to add to RD Rob's call out for another pair of hands if anyone is fancy free.

The Glaciers will be Rob's 1st rattle with the RD role and while he picked a might one to dip his toe in to direct, he has managed super well planning wise to have both racing groups pretty much ready to rock and roll come Sunday morning. So lads, can we source another body to give RD Rob a hand?

Robert CarneyApr 11 2019, 9:33pm---------------------------------------------------------
Thanks for the shout out Lillian.

59 Runners. 7 teams. 33 Solo Artists. Making their way around some of the less travelled areas of the national park trying to dip their toe (or any other body part) in the 7 lakes.
Weird looks from the deer. Weird looks from the tourists.
Best of luck to all and enjoy the beautiful course even if you go a bit astray.

Can everyone check their start times and let me know if there are any errors.

Will send email out to all volunteers tomorrow.

Gordon PlaceApr 11 2019, 10:01pmFair play Rob. Looking forward to it! Couple of speedy looking teams there
Stefan LangApr 11 2019, 10:37pmHey Runners, i truely want to participate on sundays race. Is there a chance for a lift? I stay in KingsWood Hotel Citywest. I am a passionated Trailrunner from the Alps in the very south of Germany. O organise my own race: I am excited to to the WGR but need a lift. It would be great to see ya all on Sunday. Thank you very much! Keep on running - Stefan
Igor Gonzalez-GuridiApr 12 2019, 7:36amRob/Mikey,
If it's any help, I'm volunteering both events. I can collect the gear and bring it in my car on Wednesday. Or meet-up somewhere to hand-over the gear to you Mickey. If so, my details are in the system. If you have any issues getting my phone number/email let me know. Rgds, Igor
Andy KeelingApr 12 2019, 9:16amHello Rob
If you're still looking for volunteers I'd be keen.
Robert CarneyApr 12 2019, 9:33amStefan - Unfortunately entries are closed.

Igor - Thanks for the offer, will let you know on Sunday.

Andy - Thanks for volunteering, I'll add you to the list and get an email out to you later with times etc.
Robert CarneyApr 12 2019, 4:12pm-----------------------------------------------------------

Email sent out to all volunteers with the rough plan.
Any questions or queries give me a shout.


Robert CarneyApr 12 2019, 4:13pm-----------------------------------------------------------

Email sent out to all volunteers with the rough plan.
Any questions or queries give me a shout.


Jarlath HynesApr 12 2019, 5:33pm@ Stefan - if you want to head down for an informal run in the Glenmalure area, you're welcome to travel with me.
I'm volunteering so will be staying around until early afternoon.
Text or call me 00353 876812270
Alice ClancyApr 13 2019, 10:38amHi all,
This is a long shot, but if anyone with great eyesight running leg 2 tomorrow spots a car key somewhere on the route, if you can, please pick it up!...I lost it last week while distracted looking for Lough Firrib/three lakes. I don't have very high hopes of finding it again, but its a single key on a light yellow tag .
Best of luck all out there tomorrow it's shaping up to be a very good day!
Robert CarneyApr 13 2019, 4:34pmHi All,

Last few things with tomorrows race.

Non returnable drop bags to be at the Glendalough hotel for no later 09:10 a.m.

We will have a supply of some water at Checkpoints

In the event of any drop outs can you ensure that you get word to the nearest checkpoint or contact me on the emergency no. on the back of your race no. before heading home.

Last and most importantly - ENJOY.

Gordon PlaceApr 14 2019, 7:09pmThanks to Rob and all the gang for a great day out. Better say it now before i'm cursing ye all for the pain. Well done to all the winners and record breakers
Fabio BaltieriApr 14 2019, 10:09pmHey thanks a bunch Rob and all the volunteers, this race was so much fun! It was my first on unmarked on open mountains and I did not expect I would have liked it so much! Loved every moment, I'm surprised it's not more popular.

Well done to all runners as well, moving fast on those hills is much harder than I would have thought.

Great way of spending a Sunday! :-)
John MurrayApr 15 2019, 9:38amA massive thanks to Rob and all the Volunteers on a successful event yesterday. It was a very long day for them and I don't know how they managed to stand around ALL day in that chilly cold weather! I believe it was close to 7pm before the last runners came across the line!

With this now being a Non GPS race, and a tough race at that too...maybe next year some cut-offs need to be introduced so volunteers don't die of hypothermia! lol

Much respect and thanks guys for a great day out battling through the hills. My body definitely is feeling it this morning! :)
Elizabeth WheelerApr 15 2019, 10:26amHuge thanks to Rob and the volunteers yesterday, it was a superb event and I can look back today and say I enjoyed every minute of it (except for most of Leg 3!)...seriously the effort from the volunteers who stood out there in the cold weather all day is so commendable. Hats off lads to a great event.
Elizabeth WheelerApr 15 2019, 10:26amHuge thanks to Rob and the volunteers yesterday, it was a superb event and I can look back today and say I enjoyed every minute of it (except for most of Leg 3!)...seriously the effort from the volunteers who stood out there in the cold weather all day is so commendable. Hats off lads to a great event.
Colm AustinApr 15 2019, 11:32amThanks to everyone that organised the race yesterday, good day out. Section 3 was a real eye opener.
Anthony BradleyApr 15 2019, 11:46amJust like to say a great thanks to Rob and all the volunteers for a great day yesterday! Had an absolute blast! What a great first race for me and a great introduction to IMRA can't wait for more of it. Cheers guys an girls.
Robert CarneyApr 15 2019, 2:05pmHey Folks,

Thanks for the Thanks.
Happy to help out with this event, this was my first ever Marathon distance run a few years ago and really got me into running in the hills.
Thanks to Liam and James for giving me the introduction and I am only too happy to accomodate others in such a class route and also a little jealous that I didn't get to dip me toe in the icy cold lakes.
Watching everyone cross the line made the sacrifice worthwhile.
All the volunteers had a long day, so thanks to Aidan, Damian, Jarlath, Michael, Ivana, Igor, Andy, Linda and Lillian.

Congratulations to Conor and Elizabeth on the solo wins.

New relay record set by Peter and John Bell, Bernard Fortune and John McAuley.

Results are up in the report section.

For anyone who enjoyed it:
Circuit of Avonbeg and
Stone Cross to Lug races are worth a look.

John McAuleyApr 15 2019, 3:12pmHi Rob, many thanks to you and your team for the long day spent volunteering in the cold. If I may correct one point above, and to give Mr Swords his due, the team in question was the Brothers Bell, myself and Warren. Although Bernard was fastest on his leg so is also due a doff of the hat.
Thomas RocheApr 15 2019, 3:20pmBig Thanks to Rob and all the volunteers for a great day out in the hills. My time is slightly out by 1 hour so if you could re adjust please :)
Robert CarneyApr 15 2019, 3:54pmJohn - Apologies to Warren, sorry the cold must have gotten to my brain standing at the Wicklow gap :)

Thomas, handwritten mistake on the sheet, corrected now.
Steponavicius GedisApr 15 2019, 6:52pmMany many thanks to Rob and all Volunteers for organising and standing in the cold while last snails reaching the finish lane, really really appreciate this!
Definitely underestimated the course!
Kevin CullinanApr 24 2019, 10:28amGood morning Rob,
Thanks again for a well run event and great to have the weather for it on the day. It's some course.
No worries if gone but if there is a raidlight 600ml soft flask and a childrens lunch box in the lost and found please hold onto them and hopefully I can retrieve them sometime. We headed back to Clare/Tipp before remembering them from the drop bags so it's our own fault.

Thanks again and take care,
Robert CarneyApr 24 2019, 2:04pmHey Kevin,

Yes it ended up in my boot. I have it washed and will keep for you.
I also have a power bar flask,a Dublin marathon hat.
A tailwind softflask also.
I will be goin to Ballyhoura for the race next week.
If anyone wants to claim let me know.