This month we take you to discover the Tunisian desert, to the Ultra Mirage El Djerid, then to China with the Devil's Ridge race, to visit the incredible landscapes of the Gobi desert. Then we will come back to the North American Nut race which reveals the beauties of Oregon. Finally we finish the trip by the north of Spain with the Pyrenees Stage Run which offers a friendly stage race.
The Ultra Mirage© El Djerid (UMED) is the first 100km Ultra Trail taking place in the stunning Tunisian Sahara Desert.
A single stage race that takes runners across a wide diversity of terrains, ranging from soft sand, small dunes, rocks, dry riverbeds and oases.
Runners will have 20 hours to finish the race with very specific deadlines to reach at each of the five checkpoints which are between 15-20km apart.
This race is open to all types of athletes, from professional ultra-runners to anyone passionate about ultra-trails, who have done sufficient training of course!
Tozeur is the main city of the Djerid, a region situated in South West of Tunisia. It is very well known for its stunning surroundings with a mixture of rocky mountains, valleys, salt lakes and desert dunes and most of all for the generosity of its people. The area of the Djerid has been the background of famous movies including Star Wars & the English Patient just to name just a few. The diversity and the beauty of the Djerid makes it a major attraction for tourists from all around the world.
Ultra Mirage Bravehearts, the movie | A story by Malek Boukerchi
More about the previous edition:
Date: Saturday, 28 September 2019
Place: Ong Jmel / Mos Espa - Tozeur
Distance: 100km (distance may vary)
Category: Ultra Long-Distance Desert Race
Stages: Single Stage Race / 20 hr limit
Terrain: Salt Lake, soft sand, dry riverbeds
Weather Conditions: Expect hot dry weather (mid 30s C at that time of year)
Number of Checkpoints: 5
Number of participants: 300 runners
Current record: Mohamed El Morabity (Men, 2017, 08:48:11), Elisabet Barnes (Women, 2018, 10:12:12)
The previous editions of the Ultra Mirage race earnt participants a high rating in the ITRA Runners Quality Index. As runners noted the organizer took care about all aspects of the race organization on the highest level, from the security during the event, well provisioned aid stations, excellent communication with participants & a fantastic finish line atmosphere & animation.
If runners wish to come with friends or family the organizer allows them to benefit from the same transport, accommodation, hospitality and meals package. On race day, they will have the advantage to follow the race, as well as go on a discovery tour in the Sahara!
Is it not enough reasons to visit Africa next year?
Photos: Ian Corless Photographer
China Mountain Trails is a trail race organization run by, and for, trail runners. Each member of the team has previous race planning and organizing experience, along with many years running trail races in Asia and throughout the world. They are connected by a passion for mountains and beautiful places and a desire to host truly unique, memorable and professional trail races that bring teams together on an adventure.
They offer challenging, diverse running events. Runners take apart of this will travel through some of the most spectacular locations to be found in China. The organization is focused on creating the most unforgettable experiences for everyone: runners, volunteer, or spectator.
One of these events is Devil’s Ridge Race. The race offers an extreme endurance challenge in the southernmost region of the Gobi Desert. This place is full of a spectacular diversity of colors, vast plateaus and monumental mountains.
Devil's Ridge will take runners through stunning sand canyons, past an inactive volcano, straight towards the high snow-capped peaks in the distance. It might be made up for the relentless desert heat, continuous exposure of the terrain and technical sections.
Date: 7th September 2019
Place: Yumen, China
DEVIL'S RIDGE 25
Elevation gain: 781m
Minimum elevation: 1,740m
Maximum elevation: 1,964m
DEVIL'S RIDGE 60
Elevation gain: 2,154m
Minimum elevation: 1,757m
Maximum elevation: 3,316m
This race is only one from adventures proposed by the China Mountain Trails. To see more events organized by them, please check:
After a two year break due to damage to the course from a huge fire in 2017 the race organizer has made it possible to welcome back the runners to the NUT race on the North Umpqua River Trail in Oregon in 2019. After rebuilding of the touristic trails in 2018 organizers can again host a race on this gorgeous course.
These point-to-point courses run almost entirely along the beautiful North Umpqua River in the Umpqua National Forest. The 100K begins at Swiftwater Park and finishes at Lemolo Lake. The 50K near the Marsters Bridge and finishes at the same finish line as the first race.
The trail leads through old-growth forest Douglas Fir, Hemlock and Sugar Pine, with trees more than 800 hundred years old. Runners run through the moss-covered rock bluffs, fern-covered hillside and lush forest past several waterfalls. Both racecourses are really challenging and describing by runners as “brutiful”.
Would you try to get into this finish line in Oregon?
To know more about the previous editions' race, see:
As organizers explained the uniqueness of the race is that until this moment there was nothing like that in the Pyrenees. For people from abroad, the organizers propose this race as a great opportunity to discover the Pyrenees and then spend a few days in Barcelona. Sounds like a great plan for fans of Spain!
The Pyrenees Stage Run, a 7-stage race beginning in Ribes de Freser and finishing in Salardú with two stages in Andorra, offers the possibility to cross a great part of the Pyrenees following the classic GR11.
Competitors will run through places that they will never forget! In addition, the organizers want all participants to be part of the unique adventure. It's important for them to bring all runners closer to each other and make them as a one big family through the whole stages. To help that happen there is an event dinner after each day of running. The dinner gathering also includes the award ceremony and the briefing of the next stage plus a presentation of the photos and videos. The organizer offers two registration options, the BASIC without accommodation but including every day’s dinner (for those who want to organize the accommodation by themselves) and the FULL EXPERIENCE with the accommodation in hotels included.
The participation in the PSR is in teams (2 or 3 runners), a factor that the organizer considers very important both in terms of safety and they believe that sharing the adventure is much more valuable than doing something in solo. This allows to offer a different experience to the runners.
This stage race is an adventure where fellowship and shared moments are accentuated far beyond the competition, giving the opportunity to meet other runners across the world, to be told amazing stories or to hear about the new races to visit. Participants will visit villages whose inhabitants are part of the runners’ experience and where volunteers establish a unique relationship with the runners. For organizers the race represents a new kind of challenge as the preparation and management (for 7 days!) is very different than in a one-day ultra-race.
Pyrenees are waiting for you!
Photos: Lluis Toll, Guillem Casanova