Situated in Cleland National Park in the Adelaide Hills is one of Adelaide’s most challenging parkruns – Cleland parkrun. Whether you’re chasing entry into the Pirate Club or a chance to run with kangaroos and koalas, this parkrun is a great addition to our SA parkrun family.
SA’s only all trail event is only second to Nambour for Elevation gain (~178m v.s ~183m) but the turnaround view is amazing – out over Adelaide, and across to Yorke Peninsula on a clear day. Also, views up to Adelaide’s iconic Mount Lofty on the return.
Some describe it as the best turnaround view in parkrun! And the fastest first half of a parkrun you’ll likely do. Possibly the slowest second half.
Jon Lang is the founding Event Director and started his parkrun journey at nearby Mount Barker as part of prep for his first Ultramarathon. Mount Barker is flat and fast and to aide his training, Jon started running on the local trails to and from parkrun. With hours on the trail, the idea of an all trail parkrun was not very far away. A few talks and mentions to friends, including Co-ED Sirelle, and they were soon working through paperwork to get Cleland going.
Crafers Hotel is the post-parkrun cafe – wood fires in the winter, tree-shaded outside area for the sunny days. Good coffee, good breakfast. An amazing range of local craft beer, small batch gin and amazing Adelaide Hills Wine, if you want to make a day of it!!
Jon recalls meeting a German lady that lived locally named Christine at the trials. She was there alone.
“How’d you go? Back again for the second trial, I see!”
Breathlessly she explained that it was hard, but that she wanted to try to make it every week and get fitter.
Sure enough, she was back at launch and every Saturday. Eventually, she was interstate for work and missed a run. The following week, she explained how she’d come and run the course on Sunday, as she’d missed out the day before with travel!
Since then, Christine has progressed to local 10-12km trail events, tailwalked and volunteered and as found out on our recent anniversary, she recorded the most runs at our event, over our first year. She’s even managed to drag her husband out with her a few times now – he has more volunteer stints than runs so far!
The Hills, by their nature, are home to a range of smaller towns. But Cleland has parkrunners from most of them and regularly up from Adelaide, too. Folks who’d not likely meet otherwise, regularly greet each other on Saturday mornings.
We’ve offered something different to folks that had fallen away from running, they return and fall in love with it again (becoming RDs in the process!). We’ve kept the familiarity of all parkrun’s, enticing people that have moved from overseas, inter- and intra-state to come along and join us as their local event. Juniors that have started running and will be incredibly fast in the future, 80+-year-olds that have found being outdoors, in the hills, inspiring and seeing them return each week. The variety of people for such a small event is just amazing! World record holders, fitness journeys, newborns… only thing I reckon we’re missing so far is a wedding!
When 75 year old Mary Gehrmann completes Rocks Riverside parkrun in Brisbane, she’s always proud to come in first place – in her age group, that is. Mary took up parkrun in 2016 at age 71 and came from a background of little to no physical activity. She is now encouraging more in her…
On Friday last week we published our provisional COVID-19 Framework, describing how parkrun events are likely to return where there remains an underlying level of the virus. We intentionally published the Framework in advance of it being appropriate to open any of the 21 parkrun countries that remain closed, to enable us to progress…