Our site works best with JavaScript enabled.

Daring Deeds - real stories, expeditions, road trips and adventure

Tutus and Beer Kegs

By Alpkit
03, Jun, 2017

Taking on the great Kinder beer barrel challenge

Have you ever wondered what the residents of one of England’s busiest National Parks get up to as each summer draws to a close?

Some of them choose to haul a full seventy-two pint beer barrel up and across one of the toughest areas of high moorland in the Peak District National Park. Kinder Scout plays host to one of the most gruelling fell-running events to be run on the Dark Peak hills.

In mid to late September each year up to 11 teams of athletes gather in the car park of the Snake Pass Inn and various contraptions are unloaded from vehicles. What follows is reminiscent of the Krypton Factor as the 9 gallon beer barrels are strapped, taped and somehow secured to various (usually ladder based) carrying devices.

Although the route is short, only about 3 miles, there is a steep and loose 900 climb up to the punishing and boggy terrain of the Kinder plateau, and good navigation is needed to find the fastest line, followed by a very steep descent to the other side. The runners cross the finish line at the Old Nags Head Inn, in the beautiful Peak District village of Edale.

Whilst drinking in the hills is generally frowned upon, the nervous tension, and being inside a pub, planning to run to another pub whilst carrying a barrel of beer may draw the unwary into partaking of one or two ‘performance enhancing’ pints. The whole race is taken in good spirits with the athletes of the Dark Peak Fell Runners and Gladioli teams vying for top spots whilst those behind, such as the Fat Boys or Fieldhead Campsite race for bragging rights and village one-upmanship.

There are some loose rules and sportsmanship is assumed but there is some behaviour that could be described as cheating or at best unsporting where barrels disappear on the start line or where vital pieces of equipment go missing... other instances include tree trunks mysteriously finding their way wedged across bridges or large boulders rolled behind gates... presumably these are thoughtfully placed by preceding teams to reassure runners that they going in the right direction... how thoughtful.

The event is always run in good spirits and trophies are awarded at the end. The fastest team get to drink their barrel and the party goes on into the night (or at least the mid-afternoon). Sponsorship money is distributed amongst local Edale charities and non-profit making organisations. 

Well we got so psyched about the Great Kinder Beer Barrel Challenge that we spent the afternoon discussing all the eccentric festivals and races we'd heard of in the UK... Go on be a bit different. A top ten of eccentric races

  • Google+

In pictures

1 Comment

Share your thoughts about this article.


Anth Rowley
Brings back memories and inspiration for my own daring deeds

Reading the article 'Tutus & Beer Kegs' brought back memories of a very similar race 'The Wrekin Beer Barrel Race' that was held in Shropshire for roughly 200-hundred years up to 2013 which entailed competitors carrying a 50-kg keg up Shropshire's iconic hill - https://wellingtonsoup.org/events/the-wrekin-barrel-race/

It has also given me an idea for an unusual deed of my own as part of a series of fundraising challenges for a local charity - The Harry Johnson Trust. I'm thinking about a Santa Sleigh where a Firkin is pushed or pulled from a brewery to a hostelry with the contents then sold on behalf of the Trust. Thanks for the inspiration.

Related Deeds

Caving into Pressure
Facing fears at Hathersage SofA
In Daring Deeds
The Bearded Runner: Sierra Nevada
Time to see what California has to offer...
In Daring Deeds
OMM 2017
the OMM elite course
In Daring Deeds
With new eyes
two new adventures from new ways of looking
In Daring Deeds
Project Big Swim
Aleks Kashefi makes fear his friend
In Daring Deeds

News

May Day Madness!
Join us for an action packed weekend
In News
It’s Alpkit Hathersage’s Birthday!
Alpkit Hathersage turns 1
In News
SofA Hathersage Courses for 2018
The School of Adventure 2018
In News
The Alpkit Picks
Our top picks for perfect Christmas gifts
In News
2018 Ticket Release Radar
Tickets for some exciting events in 2018 are now available
In News

Develop

The low-down on Polygiene™
Wear more, wash less: you can't get simpler than that!
In Develop
Gravitas Lightweight Activity Waterproof
New activity shell coming soon
In Develop

Spotlight

Winter Running Kit List
Kit list for winter running
In Spotlight
2017 Highlights
Looking back at 2017
In Spotlight
Getting the Winter Miles in
Running through winter
In Spotlight
A Weekend of Wonders
Best of Kendal 2017
In Spotlight
‘Testing’ the Argonaut
A run up that hill, ride to work, climb a tree, nip out for milk kinda jacket.
In Spotlight

Kudos

Balance Becomes Trail Magazine Approved
Trail Magazine - Spring 2018 Issue
Argonaut Jacket Now Officially Trail Approved
Trail Magazine - Spring 2018 Issue
PipeDream 400 Awarded Trail Mags “Best Value” Bag
Trail Magazine - Spring 2018 Issue