Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera Event 2

What an absolute stunner of a day in Wales for Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera Event 2. Really well done to Nicola Bowen and the team on creating and managing this excellent parkrun. I feel not only is it a scenic PB course but it was very clear and supportive for those new to parkrun.

Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera sign

Cycle Route 43, Junction Cafe, A4067, Ystalyfera, Swansea, SA9 2HA

It was just the three of us this week as our 16 year old was at Canoe training for his DofE Gold. We made a day out of it and had a walk after to look at waterfalls. We also showed our youngest where our old house was!

mother. father and teen

About Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera

Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera, only started last week. They wanted to name it Ystalyfera parkrun but parkrun HQ wouldn’t let them to avoid Alphabeteer chasers. Personally I think it’s because they knew we couldn’t pronounce it!

It was so lovely to hear new people discovering the joy of parkrun. Hearing for the first time that funnel ducking isn’t allowed and that the tokens aren’t a memento of their visit (although some people forgot this and need to return them after this week).

Event 2

Of course Event 2 meant it was the first time that everyone wasn’t a first timer. It was very clear where First Timers needed to be, and when we needed to be there. Vickie Humber’s first timers briefing was very clear, friendly and funny.

first timers sign

With it being May the 4th there were even more photo opportunities than usual with Star Wars theming. There was some dressing up and even the bench (highlighting the support of Ramblers Cymru in the community) donned a mask!

Star Wars may the 4th at Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera


Cycle Route 43 parkrun is in Ystalyfera – a former industrial village, near Swansea. It is the 52nd parkrun in Wales! It is easily accessible by car off the M4, by bus or on foot.

Parking is either at The Junction Café or inside ASDA – which also has toilets. Both also have cafes for afterwards. It isn’t far by car to Glynneath if you wish to visit the Golden Arches!

There was a parkrun volunteer in the carpark of The Junction Café who you could ask the way to the start. We followed everyone else. It is just 300m away, over the River Tawe.


  • The course is a flat out and back along a section of Route 43 cycleway – which you just run once!
  • It is important to stay to the left for other users – that is both runners/walkers not taking part in parkrun and cyclists.
  • Some sections of the cycleway are broken but clearly marked. Just remember to watch your footing.
  • It’s a great route – with some great features such as trees dressed as people (with masks for faces) and waterfalls on your left-hand side as you go out!
waterfall on the Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera course
  • The path is wide enough for a side-by-side double buggy runner to take part – I am in absolute awe that anyone can do this!
  • Dogs are allowed (on a short hand-held lead) and only one per person.
  • Downhill on the way out – so ever so slight uphill on the way back up. Strava says maximum elevation of 200ft and the elevation gain was 42ft.
  • Road shoes needed – but pack your trails if you are visiting because you are likely want to go visit the waterfalls whilst you are nearby!

Jeffing at Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera

Well it turns out that I was not the only Jeffer yesterday! In fact there was even other Girls that Jeff members there!

Opting for a 60:30 I decided to keep running for around the first 800m because I didn’t want to annoy anyone. Also because I refuse to start right at the back because I am Jeffing.  After this though it soon thinned out and the people around me were accommodating to my stopping to walk every minute!

Before I even got to 4km I was so hot and popped my vest top into my skort pocket – running in just my sports bra and Oddballs cow bralette! Luckily this was after I had passed the photographer both times! Although my husband did actually film my finish!

See my other Jeffing parkrun posts

My Achievements at Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera

It went rather well, but I hadn’t anticipated the slight uphill finish, and had to stop and walk during what was going to be my sprint finish. The sub 30 was not to be as officially I was 3 seconds over. However, it was my fastest time this year!

We did go along because it was Event 2. This ticked off so much for me:

  • My Wilson Index is now 2
  • Cowell and Freyne Club 35
  • A C on the Pirates Challenge
  • Special Numbers
    • Prime
    • Fibonacci
    • Catalan
  • First 50
  • Composite Challenge
  • 10 Volunteer Tourist Complete

Plus we seem to be completing a few in South Wales which are always really nice.

Youngest’s Experience

Our youngest was first in his age category. He told me he was slightly confused about how many times he had to run it as there were people going back after the first round. These were most likely just people running on the path and not parkrun users. He does seem to struggle with this sort of thing, and so any parkruns with clear signs everywhere telling him how many laps/where to go, I find useful for him.

15 year old at hot parkrun wearing hoodie

Cycle Route 43 parkrun Stats

  • Event 2 at Cycle Route 43 parkrun saw 171 participants attend.
  • Finishing in times ranging from 17:15 to 1:04:47. With 77 coming in under sub 30!
    • Again I was gutted not to be able to push myself an extra little bit and needed to be just 4 seconds faster to join them. However, after recovering from my stress fracture this was my fastest time this year!
  • There was an average time of 32:42 across the two events.
  • Event 2 saw a phenomenal age grading of 90.82% (category VW 60-64) by Louise COPP: Who was also the first female across the line today.
  • 24 new to parkrun last week and 23 new to parkrun this week. This week it included 4 under 11s and two in the 15-17 categories.
    • Personally, for me, the beauty of parkrun is that it is for everyone. That it encourages the next generation to see coming together and getting active as just a normal part of life. Building links with the community. Welcome to those young people to the parkrun community.
  • There were 37 returning runners and 24 PBs! This is not including whether any UNKNOWNS were returning participants.
  • Already there have been 58 running groups attend – with 15 of them being new this week!
tree marshal at Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera

Thank You to This Week’s Volunteers

Debi BARTLETT, Dave BENSON, Nicola BOWEN, Wayne BOWEN, Emma BROPHY, Jodie DENNISS, Dee DOWIE, Mark GOODGER, Angie HANFORD, Elaine HOPKIN, Vickie HUMBER, Joy JACKSON, Carl JAMES, Kevin Anthony JONES, Martin JONES, Rebecca L JONES, Julie KEMP, Kelly A MORGAN, Michael PUGH, Gareth ROBBINS, Terry SQUIRES, David WILLIAMS

2 thoughts on “Cycle Route 43 parkrun, Ystalyfera Event 2”

  1. A beautiful parkrun and totally understand why they named it Cycle Route 43 parkrun!

    Remember to take it easy on yourself after the fracture, you’ll easily catch up on those 4 seconds and blast it!


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