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Date of Visit
Number of runners
Pretty good considering the frozen weather we’ve had recently. This particular event had cancelled the week before because of ice. While it was still cold we were lucky enough to get clear skies and no rain!
It was really easy to find by car. We put Hassop Station into the maps app and it’s just off a roundabout on the A6020.
Monsal trail itself is pretty long so there are lots of points you could pick it up and cycle or walk to Hassop Station.
There are some bus services that get you roughly in the area but you’d still need to walk the last bit on the trail.
Really good sized car park, I paid £2.50 for two hours. The machine isn’t the quickest though so a bit of a queue formed which may be a problem if you turn up late! It takes cards and coins though so no panic on that front. You could also feasibly park in Bakewell and have an extended warmup to get there. That said it’s all uphill from Bakewell to the start so that’s not an option that will work for everyone.
The event itself starts and finishes on the trail behind Hassop Station which has a café inside which apparently does a parkrun special breakfast. We couldn’t check it out though as it was closed for Christmas!
Bakewell itself is only a mile and a half away which is lovely place to visit. We had a great breakfast after at the Bakewell pudding shop.
Briefings and Volunteers
First time briefing for an out back is pretty straight forward! For the main briefing the RD had a step to stand on so she could be seen and a little portable speaker for a microphone she had. It worked really well!
Start line and finish funnel
Rather conveniently there is a little section of path just off the trail that leads to the car park so is the perfect place for the start line and finish funnel without impacting on other users of the trail.
Out and back. No laps!
You can’t get lost on this one. Run in a straight line until you spot some marshals in the middle of the trail, go round the little cone and then run back in the other direction. The out section is actually downhill which means it’s uphill on the way back though it’s as bit of a weird one in that if it’s not enough of an incline that it’d give you much trouble if you were walking or on an easier effort run but if you were going flat out you’d certainly notice it!
There are some amazing views to look at as you are following the trail.
Road shoes. As the whole out and back is on trail paths I can’t think of any situation where you’d need trail shoes.
Short or Long? (based on our watches and checking out other Strava profiles)
Pretty much spot on. Out and back courses must be the easiest sort to measure and setup every week!
Tourist event number:
6 ( 72.58% age grade)
Tourist event number:
145 (41.8% age grade) 46 Female
How did it go?
Andy – I had a really lovely time. We’d decided on this one as it coincided with an anniversary of ours so we came to Bakewell on Friday. Had a meal and a few drinks and stayed over to make it easy in the morning. From a running point of view, I fancied a go at my PB with what I thought was a flat course and I was on for it at one point but I faded a fair in bit in the final mile. It still ended up as my fifth fastest time so I’m still pretty pleased.
Bryony – Having experienced a couple of ‘out and back’ parkruns previously, Bryony had prepared herself to some extent that this would not be a favourite as these formats can feel like they go on for forever. The front of the packers start to flood past in the opposite direction when the half way turn round point is still a way off, for those at the back pressing home you have a long way to go yet! However, having also mountain biked the full route a couple of years ago, she was looking forward to trying out the trail on foot too. Slightly disappointed not to see the tunnels or aqueduct, but it was nice to just take in the location and not worry too much about whatever time was going to materialise this close to Christmas.
Return Visit Likely?
Only if we’re in the area as it’s a bit of a drive from where we live. I wouldn’t mind another go at it though if the opportunity arises.
Pictures and that.