I continued my parkrun tourism around north-east England in February with Gibside parkrun, which takes place at Gibside National Trust in the northernmost area of County Durham. It wasn’t that far to drive, but the turnoff is easy to miss!
Gibside is a very pretty course, but it’s the opposite of flat. The hills are fairly brutal for most of the way round, and I think I was about seven or eight minutes slower than my PB. It does have a nice finishing straight though, and the paths are nice and wide all the way round, meaning that there’s no congestion – especially as it’s a fairly rural parkrun and thus doesn’t have a huge attendance.
I found it to be a bit of a theme over the winter that I ended up doing tough, traily, muddy parkruns that would probably have been more enjoyable during the summer months. Gibside wasn’t overly muddy, but it was scenic, and I think that scenery probably looks a bit nicer now that leaves exist again. Sadly, I likely won’t be able to test this theory until 2021, as I reckon parkrun won’t be back until then. Maybe by then I’ll have forgotten the hills and be willing to give Gibside parkrun another go!