6 August 2016
South Africa’s iconic five day Whale Trail hiking route is offered as a challenge to runners capable of embracing all 53km of spectacular mountain fynbos, technical rocky ridgelines, sandy beach stretches and endless, mind blowing, beautiful vistas in one day.
After an extensive review following the first race in 2014, CapeNature concluded that the impact was negligible and were happy to give permission for the following year, and now for 2016.
Just a 3 hour drive from Cape Town along the Southern Cape coast, close to Cape Agulhas, the route takes runners on a journey from the Potberg nature reserve to Koppie Alleen in CapeNature’s flagship De Hoop Nature Reserve. The first 26km winds through fynbos covered mountains with spectacular views of the Breede River Valley and then descends to the enchanting Noetsie Bay, turning west and winding along the rocky shores of the Indian Ocean, with a mix of sandy beach and coasteering trails.
Chaperoned by Whales
Bang on the peak of whale season, runners are left wondering who is watching who as scores of the annual migratory Southern Right Whales continually breach out the water, spy hopping and waving their fins at the passers-by, making the best and most enthusiastic cheerleaders.
Make a Long Weekend of It
Tuesday 9th August 2016 is a public holiday, making this the perfect opportunity to stay and explore all that this phenomenal area has to offer. Families and friends are well looked after at De Hoop Collection and welcomed into the race vibe.
The finish area at Koppie Alleen is a festive affair. Situated right above the beach, spectators may forget to look for their runners while mesmerised by the whales, exploring the dunes and many rock pools packed with prolific life – thanks to the long standing protection offered by the marine reserve – or enjoying the food freshly prepared by the caterers.
The historic and picturesque De Hoop Collection, situated alongside the Ramsar wetland vlei offers not only sublime accommodation but also excellent guided birding excursions, nature walks and boat trips, mountain biking trails, and soon a spa for the ultimate indulgence. Traffic in your way on the walk to dinner comes in the form of herds of eland, bontebok and the rare mountain zebra.
Keeping it personal and keeping it pristine. Just 175 runners will get the chance to run this route in 2016.
A waiting list will automatically be created when these places have been filled and any substitution requests will be offered to the next on the list.