The 13 Best Trail Races and Outdoor Events to Stick In Your Diary Now - Outdoors Magic

Outdoors Gear, Equipment, News, Reviews, Forums, Walking Routes and More at


Outdoor Features

The 13 Best Trail Races and Outdoor Events to Stick In Your Diary Now

Festivals, races, talks and more to make 2019 massive

This year: how was it for you? Achieve all your goals? Tick all your boxes? Reach all your summits? No matter what your answer is, we’ll bet that this time next year you’ll be answering that question with “heck yes I did!”

To make sure you get the maximum amount of adventure from 2019, let us help you plot your next 12 months of outdoor action now. We’ve detailed 13 of the UK’s must-hit festivals, trail races, talks and more, so you can get prepared for an absolutely enormous year ahead…

Sir Ranulph Fiennes: Living Dangerously

17 January – 30 July 2019
Hardcore outdoor enthusiasts and armchair adventurers alike are going to absolutely love this one. Dubbed the ‘world’s greatest living explorer’ Sir Ranulph Fiennes has pushed human capability to its limits everywhere from Everest to Oman, and has the scars and stories to prove it.

At this illustrated talker series, ‘Ran’ takes his audience on a personal journey through his childhood and early years, and reveals his most extreme experiences and record-breaking expeditions. If you’re lucky, he might just go into the details of how he amputated his own frost-bitten fingers with a saw. Nice.


Banff Film Festival World Tour

19 January – 24 May 2019
If you’re more Netflix and Thrill than Netflix and Chill, then get signed up to this, stat. The world’s most prestigious mountain film festival is hitting the road in the first half of 2019, and delivering an extraordinary, inspiring and adrenaline-soaked collection of short films from today’s finest adventurers to almost every corner of the UK. The full programme is announced in December, but we’ll bet the big bucks that it’ll be one-hundred percent worth leaving your sofa for.

Rab Climbing Works International Festival

2-3 March 2019
It’s no secret that bouldering has blown up in the past few years, with walls opening all over the place to meet the public’s demand for blistered fingers. But while indoor climbing comps aren’t exactly new news, this one in Sheffield stands out from the crowd: sponsored by Rab, it actively encourages spectators to compete alongside some of the world’s best, and for a chance to pocket a £2000 prize fund. Even if stage fright gets the better of you, you’ve still got a heck of a spectacle to enjoy.


Sheffield Adventure Film Festival (ShAFF)

22-24 March 2019
Just a few weeks after hosting the CWIF, the ‘Outdoor City’ gets its second dose of March excitement when the big screens are fired up for Sheffield Adventure Film Festival.

Credit: Jake Thompson

More than 100 adventure, travel and extreme sports films have been hand-picked to tickle the adrenal glands, with a full programme of talks and exhibitions to dive into too – when you eventually release your fingernails from the cinema seat armrests, that is.


Keswick Mountain Festival

16-19 May 2019
One to write in big capitals and circle in red ink, Keswick Mountain Festival is a big fat glistening jewel in the outdoor calendar crown with numerous epic cycling, climbing, swimming and trail-based opportunities to get involved in across the Lake District. A selection of events has already been announced for 2019, including the second KMF 3 Peaks Challenge, which will take you on an 18-mile hike with 1,000m of ascent over Catbells, Walla Crag and Latrigg, and back in time to unwind in front of live music (and make the most of the festival’s local beer sponsor).


The OutdoorsMagic Trail Marathon, Half & 10k

4-5 May
Our very own Outdoors Magic Trail Race Series returns for its second year, this time moving to the deep woodland and heathland of Cannock Chase in Staffordshire.

Part of the OMM Festival weekend, we’ll be putting on three all-terrain trail races with each one fully-waymarked and marshalled. At the end you’ll be cheered over the finish line by hundreds of spectators at the OMM basecamp where there’ll be a bar, food, talks and just all-round good vibes.

Isle of Arran Mountain Festival

17-20 May 2019
With its craggy mountains and weather-beaten coastline, the Isle of Arran’s landscape is a just reward for anyone who puts the effort into reaching this “Scotland in miniature”. And the annual May festival is the way for walkers and climbers to discover everything the island has to offer. The four-dayer caters for all abilities, with guides on hand to take adventurers on relaxed strolls, serious scrambling, and everything in-between. Check the full programme now and see what takes your fell-bagging fancy.


The Berghaus Dragon’s Back

20-24 May 2019
Five days, 315km, 15,500m of ascent – you don’t need to be a big-brained mathematician to add those numbers together and arrive at this being one of the planet’s toughest multi-day running races.

This now-legendary biennial punisher follows the trackless, mountainous and unforgiving spine of Wales from north to south, and is so popular amongst intrepid fell, mountains and ultra runners that places for 2019 have already sold out. Godspeed, brave athletes!

Love Trails

4-7 July 2019
If, like us, your Instagram feed was crammed full of fun- and run-lovers having the time of their lives at the Gower Peninsula over the summer, then chances are you’re already familiar with this Welsh winner. A relative newcomer to the outdoor adventure calendar, Love Trails is “the UK’s first running and music festival” and makes the most of its stunning coastal setting with guided runs, climbs, coasteering, yoga classes and more to sign up for, and three nights of curated live music and DJs across a trio of stages, too.


Wilderness Festival

1-4 August 2019

Even with the distraction of a long-haired chap in a wedding dress grinning from the same web page, Wilderness Festival is absolutely talking our language when it writes of its ethos being to “satiate even the most ardent explorer” and being “inspired by the unbelievable landscape we call home”. Food, music, workshops and outdoor endeavours are the name of the game here in tranquil Oxfordshire, which is frequented by a rich mix of adventurers, city slickers, Shoreditch hipsters and, er, David Cameron come August. The Times once described it as “both hedonistic and wholesome”. Yeah, that’ll do it.


Green Man

15-18 August 2019
Always a sell-out event, family-friendly and still independently run, Green Man is without question one of the UK’s best-loved festivals. By night, enjoy the best names in alt-folk and psychedelic rock – think The War On Drugs and King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard – after a day jam-packed with canoeing, mountain boarding, foraging and plenty more.

Credit: Green Man Festival

As an added bonus, some of London’s finest street food vendors – Le Bao, Made of Dough et al – often rock up, too. More than enough reason, then, to treat yourself to a special ‘Settler’s Pass’ this year, which allows you a full week to discover everything the stunning Brecon Beacons has to offer.

Rat Race Coast-to-Coast

14-15 September 2019
Triathlons are not for the faint-hearted, and especially when you’ve got the unpredictable conditions of the Scottish wilderness to contend with, too. The 105-mile Rat Race is a true test of running, cycling and kayaking mettle, but it’s not all gruel – this two-dayer rewards participants with a route that takes in some legendary Scottish icons, and the chance of a picturesque lake-side camp and a dreamy sunset beer at the Fort Augustus halfway point, before heading towards the final flat-water paddle across the finishing line.


The Original Mountain Marathon

26-27 October 2019

Fancy finding out exactly what makes the toughest adventure race in the UK? For more than 50 years, runners from around the world have tested their navigational and mountain capabilities at The OMM, not only across gruelling distances but against biblical weather conditions too. What makes this even tougher, is that the location and route of this two- dayer change every year, giving racers a sum total of, oh, a matter of hours to prepare their path. If you like your odds stacked very much against you, then this is your kind of race. Brilliantly brutal.


Kendal Mountain Festival

14-17 November 2019

A four-day award-winning gathering that sees communities from across the outdoor spectrum come together in Cumbria to celebrate all things adventure. Watch the video below to see a few of the people we ran into at the 2018 event…

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Outdoors Magic (@outdoors_magic) on

The focus is primarily on the biggest films and documentary at Kendal – 2018 saw it host the UK premiere of Alex Honnold’s huge movie Free Solo – along with top-drawer speakers, arts and literature to get your mental cogs turning, a challenging 10k race to get your legs burning, and now-famous parties to get loose at.

You May Also Like

Kendal 2018 | Our Film and Lecture Highlights from This Year’s Kendal Mountain Festival 

A Year Outdoors | 10 Epic Trail Races and Outdoor Events From 2018


Newsletter Terms & Conditions

Please enter your email so we can keep you updated with news, features and the latest offers. If you are not interested you can unsubscribe at any time. We will never sell your data and you'll only get messages from us and our partners whose products and services we think you'll enjoy.

Read our full Privacy Policy as well as Terms & Conditions.