"

Over training is over rated, rest better so that you can train even more" - Nick Yster Bester


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Mont-Aux-Sources 50km Preview



The time has come and tomorrow morning we'll be leaving for the Drakensberg! The Mon-Aux-Sources 50km Challenge awaits!

I am super excited and even more after I received this e-mail from the race organizer this morning:


Good Morning Good Morning J

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He he he – some snow on the mountain this morning when we woke up – thought ill share it...just because I can and to make you a bit more excitedJ

Awesome! I won't mind cold weather for this one at all. Here is the route description:


ROUTE INFORMATION

Make no mistake, the Mont-Aux-Sources 50km Challenge is a "toughie". But it's one of those races that are worth it. The route follows a hiking path up the Mahai valley and past the Mahai Falls to Witsieshoek Mountain Resort, a climb of some 1700 metres over a distance of 9 kms, and the first of four refreshment points.


From here to the Sentinel Car Park, a distance of 9 kms, it's very rough undulating dirt road resulting in a further climb of some 300 metres with fantastic views all around on a clear day. From the Sentinel Car Park to the top and back, water must be carried. Assume that the Tugela River is not flowing well enough to provide water on the summit. A concrete path is followed for a short distance then back to a zig-zag hiking path past the Witches, the Sentinel, Western Buttress and Sentinel Caves to the Chain Ladders, a further climb of 450 metres.


The altitude will be affecting you by this stage, especially those runners who live and train at sea level. Everyone wears a safety belt and sliding device attached to fixed ropes alongside the ladders. Peak High Mountaineering and Mountain Club of South Africa helpers will assist you to get attached and detached to the fixed safety lines. The trick is not to look down, but to concentrate on moving one hand at a time up the two ladders. You'll reach the top in next to no time, a short scramble over rocky terrain, a skip over the Tugela River and a much appreciated run down a gentle slope to the Tugela Falls.


Now the hard part begins! Labouring up to the Sentinel Gully. There is a risk of loose rocks and stones being dislodged in The Gully. Make use of the fixed ropes as far as possible, they will give you stability and guide you away from the loose sections. You cannot run down The Gully. Just proceed carefully and cautiously and you'll reach the bottom soon enough.


You'll be back on the path which led to the Chain Ladders. Just follow the same route back to the Sentinel Car Park, Witsieshoek and the Finish.

I'll be back next week with an update. I will keep you posted on Facebook if possible.

Run strong everyone!

19 comments:

HappyTrails said...

That looks fabulous! Have a fantastic race Johann :)

Jill said...

WOW! I hope you have a fantastic race...can't wait to hear all about it!! Run strong, Johann!

Robin said...

Wow what an adventure. Looks like fun! A lot of hard work I'm sure but fun as well. Have a great time, can't wait to hear all about it!

Raina said...

Excuse me. This is a RUN? I think this qualifies more as mountaineering! This looks incredibly challenging and potentially dangerous, so be safe and HAVE FUN. :)

Black Knight said...

That is not a race but ... a war! You will do great. Great scenery.
And good luck to the Springboks.

Theia said...

Good luck!!!

Indi said...

Wow!! that is one hell of a mountain! Good Luck and be safe!!! Cna't wait to hear how it all went!

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Ladders and safety lines, sounds like an amazing adventure!

Karien said...

Looks AMAZING - can't wait for the recap! Enjoy!!

Kate said...

OH my gosh, oh my gosh, that looks SO cool! I want to do it!! :) I will definitely be stalking you on facebook to hear how things are going! Wow, it looks beautiful...and hard. I definitely know what you mean about staying focused on looking and moving UP.

Char said...

Good luck and enjoy the view from the top.

ajh said...

You are amazing. Have fun and run well.

Average Woman Runner said...

Wowee! I can't believe how rugged the terrain is in your area - not what I had pictured for your part of the world at all. I look forward to your recap and photos!

Average Woman Runner said...

And good luck, have fun!

Staci said...

Have agreat time Johann. Looking forward to your report.

coach dion said...

Maybe next year I should have a look at a little local holiday and aim at running it, it looks like fun.

Liz said...

Good luck! Looking forward to the race report...

Mark said...

wow! I think "toughie" is an understatement, that looks scary hard.

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