Lanhydrock parkrun, in Bodmin, Cornwall, is set in the beautiful National Trust grounds of the stunning Lanhydrock House. The car park is very easy to find using the postcode provided (PL30 5AD) and the car park is large enough for all of the parkrunners. National Trust members get free parking, but everyone else must pay by cash (£1 for an hour or £3 for the whole day). There are free toilets near the car park, which will be open before parkrun, and there is a café for breakfast and refreshments afterwards. The start line is a 5-minute walk from the car park/café/toilets and don’t be surprised if you’re standing among the local cows at this point, as they roam the grounds and seem to hang out near the start.
The course is one lap of the grounds and is mostly on trail paths or grass, with just the first and last couple of hundred metres being on wide tarmac paths. Lanhydrock parkrun is notorious for being one of the most difficult parkruns in the UK, in elevation terms. It is very hilly, that’s for certain, but I didn’t find it as challenging as a number of other parkruns which are ‘easier’ on paper. It’s definitely a difficult course, though, and no-one is going to be getting a PB here. The last 200m or so are all downhill, which is great for a sprint finish, but you have to climb a substantial hill before you get to experience that joy. There are plenty of marshals and signs around the course so you won’t get lost.
The grounds and Lanhydrock House itself are really beautiful and the course is very varied; across fields, through forests, winding around rivers and twice past the grand house. The facilities are also really excellent and the run is very well organised, so Lanhydrock parkrun is very much worth a visit. Don’t be put off by its reputation for being one of the hardest parkruns, as it is very rewarding.
Official Event Page: Lanhydrock parkrun
Nearby postcode: PL30 5AD
Hills: Ascent/Descent metres 138.1
Subjective PB potential: 1/10 – very hilly indeed