Faskally Forest parkrun

Run number 295, event 79, attending the AGM in Perth

It was one of those days where “you don’t have to be mad to be a runner, but it helps!”

The weather was a bit dreich, but the parkrun weather fairy managed to keep the worst of it down to a light drizzle (I believe other events did not get off so lightly!)

Access

It’s about a mile outside Pitlochry itself.  I caught at 8.11 train from Perth which had me at the station just after 8.45, in plenty of time to warm-up brisk walk out to the entrance.

Facilities

There is (currently) a dedicated car park for runners, but it IS locked after the event close down, so make sure to move your vehicle afterwards.  A cute and clean toilet block is located just near the main entrance.  Start and finish are at the same point, so if you trust the “plastic bag by a tree” method, you could leave belongings there. At Your Own Risk, of course.

Course

It takes “undulating” to new levels!  The start is up a challenging hill, and then there are 3 sort of oblong laps, with a couple of uphill sections in each.  Lots of friendly and chatty marshalls at each station.  It is an extremely pretty course (if you can lift your eyes from swearing at the hills), but watch out for slippery leaves, mud, loose stones and tree roots.

Gear

Most Valuable Player award definitely went to my parkrun World Tourist rain jacket, in fetching aqua colour, which kept the rain off during my walk there, and also has a handy zipped pocket where I stored my valuables and tied the jacket round my waist. It even featured in the run report! 

I was wearing my new With Me Now T shirt, and the phrase “is it fancy dress?” on the back earned the response “well it was last week!” from fellow tourist Angus.  I wore my autumnal leggings, which matched the glorious colours of the forest.

Crowd

There were 47 runners when I visited in November.  It’s a relatively new event, so it’s still getting a bit of interest from keen tourists.  There’s a caravan site nearby so I’m sure it will attract visitors during the more inclement months.  As well as Angus from Inverness, I also got chatting to cow-cowl Colin originally from Crawfordsburn, though he now lives over the water.  There was a sizable turnout at the parkfaff café (held this week at the Pitclochry Dam visitor centre, but it’s not always there), where the results were processed at table extremely quickly.  My breakfast of smoked salmon draped over scrambled egg on a bed of spinach and potato cakes prompted much jealousy amongst those who’d only opted for a scone (they looked nice too, as did the bacon butties)

Time

I was taking it easy.  I’d been dancing for 3 hours the night before, with another 3 hours to do this evening, so I wasn’t going to risk a fall or stumble over those loose stones.  49 minutes, I think it was only the tail walking crew behind me.  But time is an illusion anyway.

Strangely Appropriate Song on Shuffle

I was running with no tech – neither music nor watch. “Naked” I believe that’s called. Anyhoo, I enjoyed the opportunity to chat with fellow runners and volunteers, and to hear the sounds of nature in the birdsong, the wind soughing in the branches, and the gentle ripple of water.

And the rest

It was such a joy to be back at an “in person” dancing event, even though the programme of dances was certainly challenging!  Meeting up with old friends, listening to live music, sharing in the joy of dance, it was all rather wonderful.

All my parkruns

NI (and other) parkruns: summary list

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