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HK Magazine Archive

Hong Kong Trail Runner Ben Lee's Stunning Video Gives a New Meaning to "Urban Jungle"

Trail runner Ben Lee and his brother have captured Hong Kong's spectacular views and trails.

PUBLISHED : Friday, 27 May, 2016, 12:06pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 October, 2016, 5:09pm

Hong Kong-based trail runner Ben Lee teamed up with with his brother Robin to create the stunning "Why I Run: A Trail Running Story," a video that captures Hong Kong's spectacular views and trails. With clear and unpolluted skies so hard to come by, it took them a year to complete a project that showcases a city that isn't just about an impressive skyline. 

Why did you make the video? After I started joining runs and trail races in Hong Kong, I began to see so much of Hong Kong that I hadn't before. With my brother running his own production house, it seemed like a good idea to go out and create a video that showcased all that Hong Kong has to offer. Hong Kong may be a city, but there is much more to life here than the constant hustle and bustle. 

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What made you start running? I convinced a friend who was in a team for the Oxfam Trailwalker to let me join. As it was a team event, I had no intention of letting my peers down, so the added pressure got me in shape. The more we trained together, the more I enjoyed the trails. Afterwards, I signed up for a 50km race. I wasn't ready!

What was your worst time on the trail? I've had some pretty torrid race experiences which have involved severe full-body cramps, losing my stomach (vomiting) multiple times, and just all-time lows. They're worth it though—they make the good times that much better. 

Are Hongkongers missing out on what their city has to offer? I would say a lot know of it—but a lot are missing out. Then again, the trails are often an escape for a lot of us from the city too so I wouldn't want everyone to be out there.. Just imagine! 

What’s your favorite trail in Hong Kong? Too many to chose from really. It's hard to beat Pat Seng Leng for the dramatic ridge run—but don't do it in the summer unless you have litres of water! There is no shade or escape up there. Anything in Sai Kung is worth it, with Stage 3 of the Maclehose Trail being a leading contender for my favourite. As I live on Hong Kong Island, the whole Hong Kong Trail is great. The whole Island is great to run.