2018 Start Imminent: 8 days, 400km
The inaugural Cape Wrath Ultra™ in 2016 blew everyone away with a week of perfect weather showcasing the very best of the Scottish Highlands to the intrepid runners. Universally declared a bucket list event by the 2016 participants the biennial Cape Wrath Ultra™ returns for its second edition, starting Sunday 20th May in Fort William.
The 95 runners at the start of the 2016 Cape Wrath Ultra™ © Ian Corless
Staged by the same team that brought you the inspirational Berghaus Dragon’s Back Race®, the Cape Wrath Ultra™ is a once in a lifetime, 8-day expedition race weaving 400km through the Highlands of Scotland.
The route is based on the popular Cape Wrath Trail, which consists of a matrix of route choices leading to the spectacular lighthouse perched on the cliffs of Cape Wrath itself. After extensive reconnaissance by the event planning team, the Cape Wrath Trail route was modified so that the best running terrain and paths were linked together with the essential Overnight Night camp stops, and the Cape Wrath Ultra™ was born.
Race Director Shane Ohly says, “It’s not a route designed to cross or climb mountains, but to take the natural line through the mountains. It’s the logical route dating back to ancient times.” It will certainly be stunning with amazing mountain scenery and vistas as participants cross the most remote and wildest country in the UK. Trekkers take on average three weeks to complete the classic Cape Wrath Trail, but the Ultra participants will have just eight days.
Remote glens and long days await the runners this May © Ian Corless
The average daily distance is around 50km with 1400m of ascent, but the days vary in length from 37km to 72km with days six and seven being two of the longest and toughest for the runners to complete within the dreaded course cut-offs times.
The fact that the route follows the natural line though the glens means that river crossings are a particular concern – the valleys are after all where the water goes! Rivers, even small ones, can rise quickly and be fast flowing, and along the route there are approximately 100 river crossings.
Despite perfect weather in 2016 only 62% of the starters completed the route; it is immensely challenging and the cumulative fatigue of day upon day of racing quickly wears down even the most hardened of mountain runners.
There will of course be live GPS Tracking so that you can 'Dot Watch' all the action from the comfort of home.
Race Director Shane Ohly commented, “There is no doubt that the Cape Wrath Ultra™ is an extreme challenge and we have our fingers crossed for another week of great weather and high completion rate this year”. He continued, “I can’t wait to welcome the 2018 runners to Fort William this weekend!”
Entries for the 2018 edition of this extraordinary adventure sold out quickly - the next race will take place in May 2020.