New Klipspringer 2018 2-day stage format:
Following on from the overwhelming success of our first couple of years we have listened to our Klipspringer fans and have added MORE!! More trails, more desert, more blood, sweat & tears, more exhilaration, more fun….
The weekend of 28 & 29 April 2018 will see the introduction of our brand new two-day stage race format opening up even more of the magnificent Augrabies Falls National Park and incredible Kalahari. You will be running in places that very few humans have even seen!
The last few details of the new routes are still being finalized but this is what we can tell you now – the unbelievable trails that made up the original Klipspringer Challenge & Klipspringer Lite remain to thrill and kill you on Day Two, while Day One will be made up of spectacular brand new trails that in all likelihood have never seen a human footprint. Overall approximate distances will be as follows:
Entries open 1 October 2017! Space is limited.
In the heart of the spectacularly desolate Northern Cape lies one of the continent’s true wonders of nature. As the mighty Orange River makes its way inexorably to the cold Atlantic Ocean, it winds its way through the scorching desert and the lunar landscapes of Augrabies. Forcing its way through a narrow granite gorge, it tumbles 56 metres in one of world’s biggest waterfalls by volume of water before continuing along through the spectacular sheer-walled canyon carved out of golden rock over hundreds of millions of years.
Long a favourite on the South African calendar, the renowned but challenging Klipspringer Hiking Trail has provided intrepid and tough hikers the unique opportunity to experience this unspoilt desert wilderness first hand and close up.
Now you can run the Klipspringer Trail!
Recognising the love and passion that trail runners have for the natural environment, and appreciating the increasing role that they play in conservation initiatives around the country, SAN Parks and the management of the Augrabies Falls National Park are thrilled to invite a very limited group of runners once a year to test themselves against the magnificently gruelling canyon and desert environment that is home to the Augrabies Falls Klipspringer Challenge.
Showcasing the very best of desert trail running, the 40km Klipspringer Challenge provides runners with a fantastic balance. The race starts with some tough technical up-and-downs in the early sections as runners make their way along the canyon top, followed by a steep rocky climb down to the bottom of the canyon and some spectacularly brutal boulder hopping along the banks of the river as they make their way through the magnificent granite cliffs of the ancient Orange River Canyon. Runners will then be greeted with energy sapping desert riverbed sandtraps leading out of the canyon, and exhilaratingly fast Kalahari trails to take them home, through the foreboding Swart Rante with their exquisite Quiver Trees and Camelthorns, over the unforgettable Moon Rock to the Finish. Although the Race Weekend has been chosen carefully, desert heat could always be a factor and Compulsory Equipment and Water requirements are critical. In addition to some of the best and toughest trail running conditions on the planet, runners will be rewarded with unbelievable scenery and very possibly sightings of the native Springbok and Gemsbok that make the Park their home, as well as, of course, the race namesake, the awesome and agile Klipspringer. Those runners that take the time to enjoy a quick dip in the cool and mighty Orange River (recommended!) are likely to do so to the unmistakable haunting cry of the resident Fish Eagles.
The 21km Klipspringer Lite provides runners with a spectacular and challenging taste of true desert trail running. The course essentially follows the route of the Challenge for approximately 9km, throwing up some tough technical ups and downs in between some great running trails along the top of the canyon. At this “midpoint” runners will be greeted by the very welcome sights of a fully stocked hydration station and some of the most incredible views over one of the world’s most dramatic sheer granite river canyons. Here the Challenge continues down into the canyon while the Lite turns away to join the wonderfully fast trail heading home, taking them through some exquisite indigenous Kalahari Camelthorn and Quiver Tree landscape, up and over the unforgettable Moon Rock towards the Finish.