What better way to spend the Easter weekend than on an adventure?
The Slow Marathon is a chance to see the sights, ending up in Huntly, while taking a walk around the Correen Hills area. Don’t worry about the word “marathon” in the name though – in this event, the slow people are the winners.
Organised by Deveron Projects in Huntly, the Slow Marathon was started in 2012. This year artist Andrea Geile has created a route around the theme of Energised Landscape.
“I am a life long hillwalker,” said Andrea.
“For the last seven years I have been working on energy themed sculpture because I am interested in buildings in the landscape.
“I am aware of the communities who have been affected by new energy proposals and pylons and I am thinking about what I can do as an artist to help them.”
Andrea is helping communities by creating pieces of sculpture to encourage conversation and to allow people to talk about their experiences. There will be pieces of sculpture along the 26 miles of the Slow Marathon trail which Andrea has thoroughly explored, along with Claudia Zeiske, who is in her sixth year of organising the marathon.
Claudia spends the winters walking over the countryside to find new routes to match the different theme each year. This time the walk will focus on energy and the journey will take the walkers around energy sites such as wind farms, solar farms and neolothic sites like pictish stones. She has to make sure that the route is both safe and interesting for those who take part.
Claudia said: “We combine interesting with going through fields and staying off the uncomfortable roads. This year we are passing a distillery and a National Trust property.
“There are also different stations along the journey. I don’t want to give away the surprises for this year, but in the past we have had a pop up coffee shop, music stations and whisky tasting – things that relate to the theme of the route.”
The Energised Landscape walk takes a complete day, from eight hours to 12, depending on the speed of the walker.
Friday night will be when registration takes place and the Saturday walk will be followed by a talk on Sunday. The talk will focus on the theme of Energy and Us and will be a discussion surrounding our relationships to energy and energy structures in the landscape.
Jelte Harnmeijer, a founding partner at Scene Connect who assist communities in meeting renewable energy objectives, and Jamie Wilkinson from Huntly and District Development Trust, will both be there to talk about the local impact of energy on the landscape.
Andrea said: “I have been walking with community groups, including schools and a women’s walking group as part of the three month residency. All ages and backgrounds have been invited to walk with me.”
The Slow Marathon will take participants through several thousand years of energy and human activity, from ancient sites to watermills.
Registration is on April 14 at 7pm in the Gordon Arms Hotel in Huntly. The walk begins at 7am on April 15 at Huntly Square, followed by the Slow Day talks on April 16 at 11am for those who are interested. For tickets to the Slow Marathon see https://www.deveron-projects.com/events/slow-marathon-2017/