Race on the Tibetan Plateau

If you’ve been searching for an excuse to travel to the Tibetan Plateau, or just keen on an epic running adventure, then look no further because on April 30th this year there’s an awesome new event being launched – The Yading Skyrun! Now, before I get too far into things I should warn you about something. This is not an event for the faint of heart. It’s a seriously tough challenge that combines technical trail, loads of climbing and high altitudes. Think 29km with 2,300m of vertical gain and a maximum height of 4,700m. If you’re still keen to give it a crack, then read on!

CMT Ya Ting 2015 3D4A6656 LBelcher PSThe location is in Yading, Shangri-La. It’s regarded as one of the most scenic and pristine of all the alpine environments in China. Crystal clear lakes, glaciers, rivers, grasslands and forests cover the mountain wilderness. It’s an incredibly spiritual locale too, with the three sacred peaks of Mount Chenrezig, Jampayang, and Chenadorje looming over the national park and the 800-year-old Chonggu Temple standing proudly at 4,000m altitude. Incidentally, the temple is the finish line.

CMT Ya Ting 2015 IMG_1603 LBelcher PSThe race starts at 2,900m. Yes, that’s correct, you’re kicking things off at an already ridiculously high altitude (By running standards anyway). It features stunning scenery, a 20 kilometer climb (Once again, yes, you read correctly) before a final 5km descent to the finish. It might only be a short race, but boy does it pack a punch. If the altitude doesn’t hurt ya, then the climb will! That said, such is the remarkable locale and the exhilaration of taking on what can only be described as one of the most epic running events on the planet, that you may well not even notice how much you’re suffering…

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