53km Ultra Trail Run Info

  • Date & Time: Saturday 18th August 2018
  • Registration: 17th August 2018 – 16h00-19h00 at De Hoop Collection
  • Briefing dinner: 17th August 2018 – 18h30 – 20h00 at De Hoop Collection
  • Prize giving dinner: 18th August 2018 – 17h30 – 20h00 at De Hoop Collection
  • Distance: 53km
  • Entry fee: R3,200 – Enter here
  • Prize Money: R17,500 each to first male and first female
  • Limits: 140 runners
  • Entries open online: at 18h00 on Sunday the 22 October 2017
  • Race Venue: De Hoop Collection on De Hoop Nature Reserve
  • Start: Potberg Nature Reserve
  • Finish: Koppie Alleen – De Hoop Nature Reserve.

Race Route

Date: The race is held on Saturday 18th August 2018 and will start at 07h00 at Potberg Nature Reserve.

Registration: Registration will be from 16h00 – 19h00 on Friday 17th August 2018 at De Hoop Collection, De Hoop Nature Reserve and from 06h00 at the start venue at Potberg for those staying outside the Reserve.

Briefing: Friday 17th August 2018 at 19h00 at De Hoop Collection. Those only registering at Potberg on race morning will be given the essentials briefing then.

Prize-giving: Saturday 18th August 2018 at 20h00 at De Hoop Collection.

Accommodation: There is a variety of accommodation available at De Hoop Collection. Please see the Accommodation page and contact De Hoop Collection directly for specials that will be offered for the event as well as alternative accommodation options further afield.

Dorm accommodation: Now available at the Potberg Enviromental Centre, where the race starts), for the Friday and Saturday nights at R 300 pppn. See details on the Accommodation page here.

Transfers: Competitors will be transferred on the morning of the 18th August 2018 the 30km from De Hoop to the start line at Potberg.  Competitors may deposit an official tog bag (to be issued at registration) that will then meet them at the finish area at Koppie Alleen.

Transfers will run from the finish at Koppie Alleen back to De Hoop Collection throughout the day (leaving every 45mins) for competitors.  Spectators are welcome to use this shuttle to get to and from De Hoop Collection and the finish area. No private cars will be allowed to travel the 17km from De Hoop Collection to Koppie Alleen.

Distance: The route will follow the well-established CapeNature 5-day hiking Whale Trail and is 53km with approximately 1900m ascent. The route will be marked only where necessary.  Deviations from the established hiking trail will not be allowed and it is mandatory to stay on the paths at all times. There will be two water tables along the route and various checkpoints.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE WHALE TRAIL IS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC unless booked on the hiking trail. No route scouting or pre-running is allowed.  Any runners found on the trail illegally will be banned for all future events.

Rules & Regulations: Please read the Whale of Trail Rules & Regulations here

Entry Fee: R3,200 per runner. Limited to 140.  Enter here

Entry includes:

  • Permit and unique opportunity to run this trail
  • CapeNature fee for De Hoop Reserve and the trail
  • Paramedic support with 4×4 vehicles (excludes helicopter evacuation, or any hospitalization transport, which will be at the athlete’s cost)
  • Tog bag
  • Transfers to and from race venue to start and finish points
  • Water tables with food on the route
  • Friday night briefing dinner
  • Saturday night prize giving dinner
  • Meal at finish
  • Complimentary leg massage at finish
  • Finisher’s medal

Entry fee does not include: 

  • Accommodation
  • Breakfasts
  • Drinks at dinners
  • Personal race nutrition.

Entries open at 18h00 on Sunday, 22 October 2017. A non refundable deposit of R960 will required to secure your entry with the remaining R2,240 being payable before the 28th February 2018. Please email should you want to make arrangements for payment in installments.  Enter here

Refunds: 70% refund (of total entry fee) possible up until 18th May 2018 (3 months before the event) following a written notification of withdrawal. Please note: Most of our costs for this event are incurred and committed long before you even start training. As such, it is to both our benefit that a substitute is found and we have a very fair substitution policy:

Substitutions: Substitutions are possible up to 12h00 Friday 10th August 2018 (8 days before the event) with a fee of R700. Substitutions will be offered to the wait list first. Should you want to make a substitution, contact the organisers.

Prize Money: Both the Male and Female first place winners will receive R17,500 cash. Although this is not dependent on breaking the record, know that the fastest winning times to date stand at 4h49 for men and 5h37 for the women.

Goody Bags: Tog bag and gift items included in race entry are only for those who compete in the event and will not be handed to third party recipients.

Runners Info: Runners must be self sufficient for the day. No seconding allowed. There will be cut off times along the way, after which competitors will be pulled off the route and transported to the finish. Times range between 5 – 11 hours. Runners must be fit and should have run a marathon or at least a 30km trail (as opposed to a dirt road run) run recently. Runners must stick to the marked trail. No short cuts are allowed. There will be a sweeper. There will be checkpoints.

Medical: There will be emergency services on standby but participants must under normal circumstances, be fit, healthy and able to complete the event safely without aid.  Should the race medic declare any participant unfit to continue, he or she will be forced to withdraw from the event. This is a serious challenge. EACH PARTICIPANT MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN SAFETY.

Compulsory Running Equipment: 

  • Water containers min 2 litres
  • WATERPROOF rain jacket
  • Base layer
  • Buff or head gear
  • Whistle
  • Space blanket
  • Cell phone – emergency numbers will be supplied at race briefing.
  • Recommended Equipment – Sunglasses, Sun block, Camera.

MISSING COMPULSORY EQUIPMENT MEANS NO RUN. THERE WILL BE KIT CHECKS. PENALTIES WILL APPLY FOR MISSING EQUIPMENT DURING THE RUN.

Event Schedule (Provisional):

Friday 17th August 2018:

  • 16h00 – 19h00 – Registration at De Hoop Collection
  • 18h30 – 21h00 – Dinner at De Hoop Collection
  • 19h00 – Briefing at De Hoop Collection

Saturday 18th August 2018:Whale of Trail 2015

  • 05h30 – Transfer from De Hoop Collection to Potberg Nature Reserve
  • 06h00 – Registration opens for non-residents of De Hoop
  • 07h00 – Start
  • 11h30 – 12h30 – Winners expected at Koppie Alleen
  • 18h00 – Dinner at De Hoop Collection
  • 20h00 – Prize Giving at De Hoop Collection

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