'The hardest half'
The course is an out-and-back - the turnaround point is the half-way point. You do ALL of the hills on the return leg.
Distance = 21km, height gain/loss = 980m.
Park in the National Trust car Park at the TOP of Box Hill.
The start (and race HQ/Registration) is at The Old Fort, which is just behind the servery. There are toilets and a gift shop here as well.
From the start line, run out from the Old Fort to the chalky plateau at the top of Box Hill, overlooking Denbies Vineyard and turn RIGHT. Run down the hill to the turnaround point (marked) next to an obvious tree. Then reascend (120m) the imposing Burfoot slope of Box Hill. Run past the grave of de La Billiere, buried head downwards, and then turn right to descend (120m) to the footbridge at the foot of Boxhill. Turn left and cross the stepping stones, before running back up the way you came down. At the top, turn right and run on gently rising paths to the lookout at the top of Box Hill. Turn around the triangulation pillar and go back down the track to a well-hidden sharp turn on your left. Descend down the south face of the North Downs on a narrow path, through a gate on the path and then through a gate on your left. 15m after that gate, turn sharp left and go up the rutted shady track, nearly to the Smith and Western pub. Jink left up a few steps and through some bushes to cross the road (marshaled) - take care. After the drinks station plunge into the woods, following signs and tape to descend directly towards Juniper Bottom car park. Before you get to the car park, a marshal will direct you through a gate on your right - ascend to the top of Juniper Top until it flattens out (marshal) - turn around and run back down to the gate. Pass through the gate and turn right to find the water station at the car park at Juniper Bottom. Cross the road with care, before climbing the stairs - many stairs - of the Eiger Steps. Marshals will guide your through a dogleg left in the woods (trending right), before you trot off along White Hill, take a turn right at the end and make a cripply descent to a drinks station. Turn around, and do it all again, but this time in reverse!
Go back up to the open area of White Hill, run back along White Hill, find the dog leg (marshalled), and then run down to the huge flight of stairs down the side of the hill. Crossing the road (look out for yourself!) you willagain take the gate (now on your left) and run to the top of Juniper Top and back down again. Then turning left through the gate, proceed up the rustic and uneven track which steepens towards the top, over about 1.5km. Paying attention to the tape and signs, run back to the Smith and Western Bar and Grill (what used to be The Pilgrim's Rest Pub). There will be water at this point. Crossing the road (look out for yourself!), you will again descend all of the altitude you have previously gained, and at the bottom (now on the south side of the North Downs), turn sharp right and climb back up to the top of Box Hill on very narrow paths. At the top of Box Hill you will be rewarded with excellent views of Dorking, but now you have to lose all that height again, descending to the footbridge over the River Mole, running to the stepping stones (more water) and back up Box Hill ('the hardest run you've ever done') - keep left! At the top, the marshall will direct you to your left, where you will pass the grave of an eccentric gentleman of Dorking buried head downwards. Carry on straight, and DESCEND AND RE-ASCEND THE HILL. Once you've finished this final terrible hill, take a left hand turn back in towards the Old Fort, and finish. Congratulations - you've completed the Midsummer Munro, Britain's toughest half marathon!
WS = Water station. S/F = Start/Finish. HW = Half way.
Click on the map below for a larger version.
Midsummer Munro race profile - onward leg only. Please note: This is not a mistake. It looks bad and will feel even worse. Enjoy the views.
The course now starts and finishes at the top of the hill.
Although there will be marshals on the course, runners are responsible for completing the course correctly.