Tintern Trot is a 10K trail race that starts near the historic Tintern Abbey and heads across the River Wye into England and winds steeply through woodland to reach Offa’s Dyke. This was the 19th year the race had been held and a record 289 runners finished.
At approximately 6 miles in distance the Tintern Trot has around 985 feet of total ascent. Heading out across the old railway bridge the first section is long track that follows the River Wye south. Some of the faster runners used this section to gain some speed but not knowing what to expect on the course I decided to hold back with the hope that I may catch up with some later in the race.
At a sharp turn there’s a fairly steep incline along a stony track which levels off to a more gradual but undulating climb. I’m somewhat of a fan of the hillier sections so kept a good pace along this section until I hit an extremely steep section that leads up to Offa’s Dyke. With such a steep incline it was wiser to switch to a power hike and conserve some energy. Luckily the path wasn’t too muddy but I could imagine it being difficult to climb after a long spell of rain.
Offa’s Dyke path wound it’s way through the woods with plenty of fallen logs and sharp rocks to navigate around. The speed picked up considerably along this section as it descended through the wood and I spotted one of two injured runners that sustained ankle injuries.
Leaving the obstacles of the wood we entered an open field where you could really get some speed and was great fun bounding down. Beyond the hill was a long trail and a final rocky descent and a sprint back to the start line.
From a total of 289 finishers I just snook into the top 100 crossing the line in 99th place with a time of 51’48”. Post-race refreshments were provided for all with cake on offer along with a pint of beer or soft or hot drink.