In short: Nice scenery and good organisation, definitely recommended. In full: This was my first triathlon so these opinions are based on no previous experience.
We arrived around 09:30 for a 10:30 start and were able to park in the leisure centre car park which was a big plus. Picking up the race pack only took a few minutes as did applying the temporary tattoo race numbers then getting transition set up. It all quite low key and relaxed.
The swim was in a 25m pool and that was all well organized and fuss free. The cycle was a pleasant, pretty flat route through the countryside, lots of marshals to point you in the right direction at junctions, I never felt there was any risk of getting lost. The run was ok, some scenery but a fair amount through housing estates, a few inclines and the railway bridge at the end was hard work. The finish was nice as you were given your medal straight away and offered a tray of jelly babies and jaffa cakes, drinks and bananas.
After finishing you could go to the results tent at the end of the course and get a printout of your timings, that was nice. The goody bag was ok and I was a little disappointed that the medal was a generic Xtra Mile medal, only the ribbon was printed with the event.
I think the organisation was overall absolutely fine. The one miss I feel was at the end of the bike leg where you enter the car park and you share the road with people arriving for their event walking across the entry to transition, I did it myself when I arrived getting in someone's way and I didn't enjoy having to weave around bikes and pedestrians whilst trying to get to transition, it was an unwelcome distraction, I feel there should have been better separation of traffic. I also had a heck of a job getting the temporary tattoos off, they felt a bit OTT.
The web site also mentioned there would be a way to follow the event online which I thought would be fun for the kids but that never materialized. It also said there would be a free photo which I've not had yet but, to be fair it was only yesterday so maybe that's on the way.
Despite a negative or two though I really enjoyed it, it was all pretty well organized and efficient but had a low-key, relaxed atmosphere, not remotely intimidating for a first-timer. I'll definitely be looking to do it next year. Date of review: May 16, 2016
In short: Us usual, there's something a bit special about this one In full: I'll get the negatives out of the way first. There's no need for 500ml bottles during the race, most people took a sip then ditched them. There was also no water at the finish, unusual as there normally is on this event. The finish straight, all 500m of it, had no flags or whatever see you could see where it was. Oh and the first 4k was into a horrendous head wind but we can't blame the organisers for that :-)
So, negatives out the of the way, now to positives. There something a little bit special and bonkers about this run. The atmosphere is one of the best I've encountered, the organisation is top knotch. The route is pretty good, heading out along the sea front, into town for a couple of K then back along the front. The start is lovely, it's at a school so there's plenty of room to keep warm indoors and theres's nice indoor loos. The running tops and medals are brilliant. The The high point for me is always the great atmosphere, the brilliant entertainment (there's a band every 2 km or so on the course and Meatloaf was spectacular his year), the friendly marshalls, the whole thing. It always feels to me that this is just about a few guys who've just said "Lets do a 10K and make it BRILLIANT" and thats what you get. Not perfect but great fun anyway. We'll be be back next year. Date of review: February 9, 2014
In short: Hard going but a great race In full: This was my first Hell Up North. I'd been told how hard it was but after the first few miles I was wondering what all the fuss was about.
Then we hit our first obstacle, a short, muddy bog. That was just a mild introduction. Near-vertical climbs and long steep descents soon followed, lots more mud then, the lake.
That was pretty hard core - waist deep with much deeper patches - I slipped up to my neck a couple of times. It took ages to get through it, probably 15 minutes and that's a long time to be in deep water so it was hard going. However, it only took so long as everyone was following the person in front to try to get an idea of what was ahead - there were loads of people charging past through untested ground, anyone could have done the same to get out quicker.
Once out the other side my feet were like ice but a few minutes of running soon warmed them up again.
The bog of doom at the end was brutal too, really deep muddy holes some of which were pretty hard to get out of. Here was my only real complaint - the tapes holding the spectators back had been trampled down so they all moved forward and were pretty in your face, stood right next to the bogs, you almost had to push past them.
Overall though it was hard going but great fun with a real feeling of accomplishment to finish. People should definitely be aware though that it is hard going, very cold and wet, steep climbs and descents and neck deep water and mud. The weather was pretty sunny too, if it were cold and wet it would have been ten times worse. Plus I'm still grimy two showers later. Date of review: November 4, 2012
In short: Great organisation and atmosphere, loved it! In full: This is our second year doing the Yule Yomp. Last year it was a winter wonderland, this year was a complete mudathon.
Loads of rain and mildish weather meant that the course was pretty muddy and slippery in lots of places which made it hard going, especially uphill though there was a fair amount of track / road. Course was lovely, showing off the best of Tatton park.
Organisation was good, loads of road signs for drivers, plenty of Marshals, timing chips in race numbers, well-marked course (though the distance markers were off) and very smart medals and goody bags (with Raisin Bread!) at the end.
Atmosphere was great. This is not a small race, there were around 900 runners but it felt very friendly and everyone seemed pretty cheery. Nice to see lots of dressing up too.
Overall, hard course due to the weather but we all loved it, this is fast becoming our favorite event. Date of review: December 11, 2011
In short: Nice run, terrible organisation In full: This was my first half having previously done plenty of 10k's. The course was enjoyable, a couple of miles of dull roads then 6 or 7 of nice parkland a a finish on the front - quite pleasant.
The whole day was spoiled by poor organization. There were not enough loos at the start and the start was a complete scrum, you hard to just force your way in - rubbish. Support was OK during the race and I enjoyed the run though the marshal that suggested that the 12m mark was "just round the corner" didn't help seeing as it was half a mile further on.
What I didn't enjoy was having to queue for at least half an hour for my t-shirt and goody back, the last thing in the world I wanted after an exhausting 13 miles was to be crammed in between two barriers for 30 mins.
It was a real shame and though it didn't really take the shine off the day as I was as pleased as punch to have completed a half it added unnecessary hassle and was pretty annoying. Not sure if I'll do it again, at the minute I'm leaning towards no. Date of review: March 28, 2011
In short: Good atmosphere but cramped, boring route and expensive In full: Overall atmosphere was very good as was organization. Despite lots of runners it still felt relatively easy just to turn up and run, there was no standing around for hours.
However, once the run was under way it felt very busy and cramped for ages, at least the first 5K. It got quite annoying being constantly blocked and penned in and this is not something I noticed last year so something must have changed.
Also, the route was very dull, even worse than last year. Why can't the route showcase Manchester instead of bypassing most of it?
So anyway, it was ok but not great. I'd do it again but only because it's my "home" course as it were, if I was traveling I'd look for something else. Date of review: May 18, 2009
In short: Another fun day out In full: Same as last year, organisation was fine and atmosphere was great. The weather was kinder too, dry and cloudy.
Once problem was the that mile markers were either missing or VERY small. I only saw two, my friends didn't see any. That was a bit annoying. Also, the sausage roll in the goody bag had been replaced with a Cheese and Onion pastie. I don't like cheese - gutted!
Anyway, the run was fun and we all had a good time so definitely recommended. Date of review: May 11, 2009
In short: Great atmosphere and organisation but dull route In full: I did this for the first time yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed it. The atmosphere was brilliant and the sheer number of runners was amazing.
I was very impressed at the organization too, it was all very efficient, we got away bang on time and there were barriers about 100m before the start to act as a choke point so you could cross the start running. It was all very easy, just turn up and run.
I do feel though that the route could have been better, I found it pretty dull. Apart from that though I would thoroughly recommend this run, it's one heck of an event. Date of review: May 19, 2008
In short: A nice day out In full: I really enjoyed this one. The organization was great, the course was interesting with great scenery and nice spectator points where the wife could watch me stagger past. There was a friendly family atmosphere with a great cross-spectrum of runners.
It poured with rain which was a shame as the atmosphere was brilliant and I'm more would have stayed around after to enjoy the park.
Plus, you get a goody bag at the end with a sausage roll in it - perfect! Date of review: May 12, 2008
In short: Pleasant route with a few let downs. In full: This was my first 10k so these are a beginners impressions.
Positive first: Atmosphere was great, lots of friendly faces. Route was mostly pleasant though sometimes very crowded but the scenery was nice.
Negatives: The water station was a joke, a big disappointment when it's your first run and you've been looking forward to it for 5k. The last k was WAY more than a k which made the finish way harder than it should have been. And, it took an hour to get our of the car park at the end.
Anyway, moaning aside it was a lovely day and a good course for beginners, not really a pb course though.