A British runner has set an impressive new 24-hour record in the English fells. Andy Berry, a plumber from County Durham, summitted 78 Lake District peaks in 23 hours and 23 minutes.
He was 22 minutes quicker than previous record holder Kim Collison, who also ran 78 peaks in 2020.
What is 24-hour Lake District fell running record?
The legendary Lakes fell running record in England dates to 1904 and involves a runner reaching as many Lake District peaks as they can within a 24-hour period.
The record has previously been held by Joss Naylor (72 peaks), Mark McDermott (76 peaks) and Mark Hartell (77 peaks).
Keswick Atheltics Club member and inov-8 athlete Andy had hoped to bag 79 peaks in the 24-hour limit but he decided during the run to miss out the extra planned peak (Haycock) to ensure he made it back to the finish.
His route – starting and finishing at the top of Newlands Pass – totalled 94 miles with around 40,000ft of ascent.
The 78 peaks summited by Andy included Scafell Pike, England’s highest mountain at 3210ft above sea level, Skiddaw, Helvellyn and Great Gable.
Andy was supported throughout by experienced pacers on the fells and his partner, Jess, at road crossing points. His pacers included the former record holder Kim, who is also his coach.
Joy for Andy on 24-hour Lake District fells
Andy, who set the new record last Saturday, said: “I can’t believe it all came together on the day and I managed to build on the incredible feats of those who have gone before.
“This record has been a huge dream of mine and everything I’ve done over the past 18 months built up to this attempt. I feel proud to now see my name alongside some of the greatest long-distance fell runners in history.
“I’m indebted to everyone who came out to help me. It couldn't have been done without each and every one of them."
Lee Procter, of inov-8 and also a fell runner, said: “Andy put it all on the line and reaped the rewards. His dedication in meticulously planning for this record attempt was incredible to witness and he deserves all the many plaudits.
“The Lake District 24-Hour Fell Record is insanely tough. To put it in perspective, the famous Bob Graham Round 24-hour challenge involves summitting 42 Lake District peaks, totalling around 66 miles. Andy did an additional 36 peaks on top of those, running at an estimated ‘15-hour Bob Graham Round pace’ to do so.”
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Fiona Russell is a widely published adventure journalist and blogger, who is better known as Fiona Outdoors. She is based in Scotland and is an all-round outdoors enthusiast with favourite activities including trail running, mountain walking, mountain biking, road cycling, triathlon and skiing, both downhill and back country. Her target for 2021 is to finish the final nine summits in her first round of all 282 Munros, the Scottish mountains of more than 3,000ft high. Aside from being outdoors, Fiona's biggest aim is to inspire others to enjoy the great outdoors, especially through her writing. She is also rarely seen without a running skort! Find out more at Fiona Outdoors.