Speyside tends to get noticeably quieter in terms of visitors during October. Most people are back at school or work, the days are getting shorter, and I guess most of us are starting to make plans for Christmas. With this in mind, a number of distillery visitor centres will soon start reducing their opening hours or simply close until spring.
However, there is one big event in October which, under normal circumstances, attracts over a thousand visitors: The Dramathon.
As the name suggests, The Dramathon combines a full-length marathon through some of the world’s most famous distilleries with samples of Speyside’s finest - to be enjoyed after the race, of course!
For obvious reasons, this year’s event, which takes place this weekend, is restricted to UK residents. I would recommend you visit Dramathon next summer to find out whether restrictions have been lifted.
Hopefully, the programme will be back to normal and we can all look forward to a full-scale event.
There are 4 lengths available, ranging from the full marathon to the more manageable 10k run along the Speyside way. Teams can also split the 42K distance (for anyone looking for a group bonding activity).
The full distance takes you past iconic distilleries, starting off at Glenfarclas and finishing at Glenfiddich - with Ballindalloch, Tamdhu, Knockando, Dalmunach, Aberlour, Craigellachie, and Balvenie along the way. For anyone less excited about distilleries than I am, there is always beautiful scenery to take in around the river Spey. Admittedly, I wouldn’t live anywhere else at any time of year, but I must say that Speyside in autumn is particularly spectacular and I can guarantee it won’t be too warm to run…
One tip from me, if you can spend a few days in Speyside, is to also consider the Moray Coast Trail . For historical reasons (mostly to do with railways), there are few distilleries on the coast but the trail will help you to view the area from a different perspective. It’s an equally fantastic, more open place to run; you might spot seals or dolphins from afar and there are malting facilities along the way for whisky enthusiasts to discover.
That’s it for today and I‘ll return in a few days to chat about oak trees and acorns.
Slainte Mhath for now!