Some important mountain running dates in 2015:
31 May – Australian Mountain Running Championships, Brisbane;
4 July – World Long Distance Mountain Running Championship, Zermatt Marathon, Switzerland (http://www.zermattmarathon.ch/);
12 Sept – World Masters Mountain Running Championships, Wales;
19 Sept – World Mountain Running Championships (up/down courses), Wales (http://wmrcwales.org/).
Starting in St. Niklaus, situated in the lowest-lying mountain valley in Switzerland, and ending on Riffelberg by Gornergrat, the highest-altitude finish line in Europe at 2,585 m.a.s.l., the Zermatt Marathon is the supreme alpine racing challenge.
This event will be the most exciting and ambitious marathon competition in Europe. On the first 20 kilometres of the race from St. Niklaus to Zermatt, the course continues through the valley floor, mainly along the left bank of the Vispa River. The half-marathon distance will be reached at the Zermatt Bahnhofstrasse. From there, the course winds along an alpine road up to Sunnegga. The next leg of the race is via Gant, and after a stretch of flat land, competitors will reach Riffelalp at 2,222 m.a.s.l. Here is where the heat is really on! Because over the remaining kilometres an elevation of almost 400 metres has to be overcome before finally reaching the finish at 2,585 m.a.s.l. on Riffelberg by Gornergrat.