So I have finally reached Tring, Hertfordshire on my adventure with wonderment and trepidation, is it true that this is one of the toughest events in the country to run?
Tring is a small market town with a population of 11,730 that lies on the edge of the Chiltern hills and has interesting history that includes a close link to George Washington and how the Rothschild family set out a major transformation of the town over 40 years period stating from 1872 with the purchase of Ting Park!
This event is based at Tring Park is one stunning venue for a parkrun and as the Woodland Trust who manages it states “Tring Park is one of Hertfordshire’s most important ecological areas and one of the Trust’s most exciting and diverse sites. Covering an area of 107 hectares (264 acres), it contains a mosaic of habitats such as chalk grassland, scrub, mixed woodland and parkland landscaped by Charles Bridgeman in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.”
There are simply just some parkruns where you have to say what a privilege it was to run there and Tring ticks all those boxes if you had to design a course, wow!!!!
A must for any self-respecting tourist has got to be a photo with the park’s friendly heard of Friesian cows in the background, these ladies help make this course rather special event to run!
This course is a single anticlockwise lap of Tring park that running surface is a mixture of grass and trail paths! The start is near Lime Tree avenue and after an initial drop to the valley floor there is a steady hard incline that first half is exposed grassland, then when you hit the tree-line there is a tough dirt track zig zag path to the top of the ridge at the 1km mark!
For the next 2km you are running along a woodlands covered ridge called King Charles Ride up to the summer-house, then downhill along another woodland path past the obelisk!
The final 2km is mainly made up of undulating grassland path along the valley floor, until you do a right turn up a short steep slope, turn right again onto the beautiful Lime Time avenue, then finally turn right just before the footbridge to run down into the finish funnel!
Points to note
- Very tough incline for the first 1km
- This is one of those courses that ideally needs a gentle warm up jog beforehand as you really don’t want to test a hill climb with cold muscles just after the start!
- Very exposed on the grassland section with the wind today almost stopped you in your tracks!
- Definitely a trial shoes event after prolonged periods of wet weather
My time was 39:25 that at the moment I am just going through the motions of completing all these events up to my 100th at Houghton Hall.
There is free car park on Haste Lane Sat Nav HP23 6AP, please note the gates for this car park open at 8:30am. Unfortunately there are no toilet facilities at Tring Park itself!
For the post run coffee we retired to The Akeman restaurant for a well-earned breakfast at this lovely venue!
Natural History Museum – Tring
After our refuelling stop it was great to be able visit The Natural History Museum, Tring and look at all the interesting wildlife exhibits based over a number of floors from insects right up to elephants!
This was a perfect way to end to my Tring adventure 🙂
I would like to thank the run director Ken Douglas and his team of volunteers for making us all feel extremely welcome on the morning, top marks guys!!!
Finally this is undeniably one of the toughest cross-country style courses in the UK, but I can wholeheartedly recommend this event for the stunning views and the sense of real achievement in completing Tring parkrun!!!
Mark aka Silent Runner
So it has finally happened I have completed my first ever stint as run director at event 5 Wardown Juniors!
I would like to thank the fellow members of the core team for just being awesome to work with over the last few months and all the lovely volunteers who helped out brilliantly on a very wet windy morning!