Montsouris parkrun (France)
This week we went to Montsouris parkrun, in Paris, France. Located in the 14th arrondissement, the park is several km south of the main tourist spots of Paris. The postcode provided (75014) doesn’t quite get you to the start, so I would use Parc Montsouris in your SatNav or use the map on the course page to guide you. The meeting point is near the public toilets at the north-east corner of the park. The toilets were free, clean and open well before 9am. The meeting point is also the finish line, though not the starting line. After the briefing, the runners are walked to the starting line at the south-east corner of the park. The course itself takes in three-and-a-bit anticlockwise laps of the perimeter of the park. There are no marshals and no tail walker, but as long as you keep to the perimeter path you shouldn’t be able to go wrong.
The whole course is on wide, tarmac paths, though you will have to share them with the many non-parkrunners enjoying the park and walking their dogs. The course is hilly, but it is half a lap uphill, followed by half a lap downhill… rather than undulating throughout. Overall, there is more downhill and the final 0.5km is nearly all downhill, which makes for a good sprint finish.
Parc Montsouris is a really lovely and interesting park and a pleasure to run around – the course takes in a large man-made lake, a railway bridge (you run under it) and a winged statue atop a column (Colonne de la Paix Armée). The Pavillon Montsouris restaurant is situated actually on the parkrun course, though the parkrunners actually frequent Café Le ChinChin which is just outside of the park. If you have time to wait for the last runner to finish, you can all walk there together. Runner numbers at Montsouris parkrun are very small (frequently under 20) and the group seemed to be made up mostly of parkrun tourists and British ex-pats. Everyone was very friendly and more than happy for us to join them for their post-run coffee. We had a very enjoyable experience at Montsouris parkrun.
Official Event Page: Montsouris parkrun
Hills (as logged by Suunto Spartan Trainer): Ascent 85m / Descent 122m
Subjective PB potential: 8/10 – hilly, but a net downhill
Distance Displayed on Suunto Spartan Trainer: 4.97 km