Steaming to the Coast
Saturday 20th April 2024
Channel Events are super excited to be bringing you this brand new trail running event in 2024 that utilises the longest standard gauge steam railway line in the UK!
Steaming to the Coast will see entrants ride the steam train along this beautiful heritage line from the coastal town of Minehead to the lovely village of Bishops Lydeard which is located at the foot of the stunning Quantock Hills AONB.
There are three distances to choose from; 11 km, 11 miles or a full marathon. All entrants will take the train from Minehead to Bishops Lydeard taking in the beautiful West Somerset countryside. Marathoners will disembark at Bishops Lydeard to start their 26.2 mile trail run back to Minehead, cheered on by the 11 mile and 11 km entrants. 11 mile and 11km entrants will then ride the train back to their start points of either Williton or Washford before running back to Minehead (the gateway to Exmoor National Park) and finishing outside Minehead Station.
The full marathon route takes in the wonderful views from the main Ridgeline of the Quantock Hills before dropping down to Williton where the route follows section of the Steam Coast Trail and the England Coast Path.
After finishing this epic challenge you’ll definitely have earned a fish and chip supper washed down with a pint of Somerset cider.
Countdown to event start!
An Amazing Route
The full marathon route takes in the beautiful Quantock Hills AONB before dropping down to Williton and following actions of the Steam Coast Trail and the England Coast Path.
We’ll be using our Webscorer timing software to give you an accurate finish time. Your age category will be automatically generated using your date of birth when entering.
Please make sure you wear your bib number so it is visible at all times on the front of your person.
Please also stay in finish order as cross the finish line and make your way through the finish funnel.
Different Start Points
All entrants will ride the train from Minehead to Bishops Lydeard.
Marathon: 10:00 – Marathon entrants will disembark at Bishops Lydeard and start on mass on the platform next to the steam train.
11 Mile: 11:30 – Entrants for this distance will ride the train back to Williton and start on the platform od this station next to the train.
11 KM: 12:00 – Entrants for this distance will ride the train back to Washford and start on the Steam Coast Trail that parallels the train line.
Hopefully based on the start times, entrants will arrive at the finish much closer together creating the perfect opportunity to support each other and cheer everyone across the finish line.
Marshals will be positioned along the route where the event organiser deems it is appropriate. UK traffic laws must be obeyed when crossing or travelling along the highway, marshals will be checking this.
There will be multiple marshal points as well as checkpoints along the course.
C G Safety Cover will be providing medical services and you’ll have an emergency mobile number printed on your bib number should you get into trouble.
Checkpoints will have water and snacks available to keep you hydrated and sustained but we recommend also carrying water and snacks with you throughout the event.
Radio marshals will be present at Checkpoints to radio your times back to HQ for your safety.
There will be aid stations at all of the checkpoints along the course where you’ll find sweet and savoury treats and hydration.
Fully Waymarked Course
The course will be appropriately way-marked using orange arrows on a white background and small orange marker flags. Full details will be given in the pre-race information pack and pre-race briefing.
All of our route marking equipment is reusable, you won’t find any single use barrier tape on our events.
Route maps, GPX files and a route description will be available from our downloads page 2 days before the event.
Checkpoint Safety Crew
Taunton Raynet will be supporting our marshals at each of the checkpoints.
They will have a radio network set up and will be radioing your bib numbers back to HQ as you pass through. Please make sure you stop at each checkpoint and have your bib number recorded. This is for your safety.
Finishers Medals (optional)
As part of our sustainable approach we now offer finishers medals as an optional extra.
You can purchase a finishers medal at point of entry as long as you enter at least 4 weeks prior to event day.
Many of you love a medal as a momento so book early to avoid dissapointment.
Our medals are sourced and made in the UK supporting small local businesses like us. The £5 fee for the medal is the cost price, we don’t make any money on these but you’ll know you are supporting the local economy.
If medals aren’t your thing, that’s cool, you can just enter this ace event, enjoy the experience and know that you are helping us to reduce waste in the events industry.
Will we see you on one of the steamy start lines?
Everything you need to know…
Saturday 20th April 2024
West Somerset Railway – Minehead Station, Minehead, Somerset, TA24 5BG
11 km – Washford Start
11 miles – Williton Start
Marathon (26.2 miles) – Bishops Lydeard Start
11 KM – £34
11 Miles – £40
Marathon (26.2 Miles) – £55
Entry fees include the steam train transfer to the start lines (special event rate of £15 per person, RRP £30 per person)
+ a small booking fee
Entry terms and conditions can be found here.
Finishers Medals can be purchased as an optional extra at point of booking. Medals need to be purchased at least 4 weeks in advance of event day.
Registration Opens: 07:00
Train Departs Minehead: 08:30
Marathon Starts: 10:00
11 Mile Start: 11:15
11 KM Start: 12:00
Please use the various public car parks along the seafront and around Minehead. In an effort to reduce the carbon footprint of the event we would appreciate car sharing where possible.
The course is fully way-marked and timed for accuracy.
Route maps, GPX files and a route description can be found on the downloads page by clicking here.
We are in the process of working with local accommodation providers to provide discounted room rates for entrants. Details to follow.
Registration will be on the platform at Minehead Station and will open at 07:00.
Entrants will collect their bib numbers from registration on event day.
Please bring a means of attaching your bib number to your person. We no longer supply safety pins but you can purchase recycled and reusable bib clips at registration.
KEYS AND BAGS
We will be providing a bag drop this year. Use the baggage tag attached to your bib number to mark your bag and then hand into the team in the bag drop tent!
For 2024 the briefing will mainly be delivered in the form of the pre-event information pack. All entrants must fully read and digest the pre-event information pack and be ready to roll on arrival at the event.
There will be a summarised briefing on each of the start lines, any last minutes changes will be briefed at this time.
Superbly marshalled along the route with clear and appropriate signage.
Please note; our marshals are not allowed to manage the traffic at road crossings or on road sections. It is your responsibility to cross when sage to do so and abide by the Highway Code when using the public highways.
We strongly recommend that you get some training done before event day. There are many online training plans and resources available but if you need that face to face motivation then why not have a chat with our friends at Start Running Stay Running.
You can also join our ‘Warrior Tribe‘ community group on Facebook to help with your training. See the dedicated page here.
This event is spectator friendly. Crowds make the event so please do bring your entourage and help create a great atmosphere. There are numerous points along the course that you can view the action from. Spectators could also book places on the scheduled steam trains on the day to get out along the course to support the entrants.
There will be a water/aid stations with some sweet and savoury treats at various points along the course . We advise carrying some snacks and water with you along the course so you ca stay hydrated and sustained at all times.
Dana’s food takeaway is situated on the sea front next to the Adventure Centre if you feel the need for well deserved ‘Fish and Chips’ after the event. The burgers are pretty good too!
You can purchase a finishers medal at the point of booking this event. To reduce our waste we now make our medals optional extras, you’ll need to book at least 4 weeks in advance to order a medal.
Hoodies, T-shirts and caps are available to purchase from the online merchandise shop linked from our merchandise page. You can also opt to have the year printed on your garments to help you remember when you completed this awesome challenge.
Paul Rubery from Blowfish Photography will be taking photos at various points along the route. A handful of images will be posted on our Facebook shortly after the event with a link to the online gallery. There will also be a link to the photos added via a button in the section above.
You can search for your images using your bib number or with a selfie to save the hours of scrolling.
High resolution versions and prints will be available to buy with 100% of the profits going to Exmoor Search and Rescue Team to help them keep their vital equipment and resources stocked.
If you share your images to social media, please tag, share and comment away to help promote the event for future years, thank you.
Provided by Channel Staff and C G Safety Cover. Channel Staff will have first aid kits at various positions around the course and C G Safety Cover will have a mobile first aid hub should you or another entrant need assistance.
The course will be well marked with appropriate signage markers.
Orange arrows on a white background along with small orange markers flags will mark the course.
All of our course markers are reusable. You won’t find any single use plastic barrier tape marking our courses.
Toilets will be available at the train stations where each distance starts and there are toilets at Minehead Station where you will collect your bib number and also finish the event. Other public toilets are available on Minehead sea front.
There will be water available at the event HQ at Minehead Station and at the various checkpoints along the route.
Please note: We are now a cupless event organiser so you will need to bring your own reusable cup or drinking vessel with you. We will have branded, collapsible, reusable cups available to purchase at registration.
Whatever the weather conditions, please make sure you are appropriately equipped to deal with the environment. The event will run in conditions deemed safe by the event organisers. Should the conditions not be appropriate the events team will contact you no fewer than 12 hours prior to the event registration. See terms and conditions for our cancellation policy and consider purchasing the optional refund insurance when booking your place.
Celebration is the key! As you sprint the last 100m to the finish line we want to see your arms aloft!
WHAT’S INCLUDED IN YOUR ENTRY
- Steam Train to the Start Line
- Amazing route in a stunning setting
- Bib Number
- Accurate Timing
- Warm Atmosphere
- Fantastic Marshals
- Aid Stations along the course
- Beautiful Wooden Medal (Optional Extra)
The event has three distances available. You can choose the full marathon, 11 miles or 11 km.
All runners board the train in Minehead and ride the Steam Train for the entire length of the line to Bishops Lydeard. Marathon runners disembark at Bishops Lydeard and will run back to Minehead via the Quantock Hills, the Steam Coast Trail and the England Coast Path. 11 mile and 11km runners will stay on the train and ride back to their chosen distance start points of either Williton (11 miles) or Washford (11 km) before running back to Minehead also.
All runners will finish outside Minehead Station. Once finished, there are plenty of options for food and drinks within the town of Minehead. Surely a fish supper on the beach has been well earned after that amazing run?
Can I borrow equipment?
No. We ask that all entrants are fully equipped and understand how to use their equipment prior to taking part in the event.
Is it possible to get lost?
The route will be fully way-marked with appropriate signage including distance markers. As long as you keep focused you’ll be fine. Marshals will be present at appropriate locations and sweepers will pick up behind the last entrants.
What if I want to enter with my mates?
If you want to enter and take on the route with your mates to gain a sense of achievement then that’s awesome.
Our events are just as much about inclusion, accessibility and participation as they are about competing so please do bring a crowd and share the challenge together.
Can I fill up my water at every checkpoint?
There will be water available at all checkpoints but we ask that you come with the aim of being self-sufficient for the day.
We are a cupless event so all participants must carry a drinking vessel of some description. We will no longer be suppliying throw away cups at checkpoints. If each entrant used a cup at each checkpoint we would be throwing over 1000 plastic cups into landfill in one day!
Branded reusable and collapsible cups will be available to purchase at registration on event day.