If you want a real challenge, then attempt to get one of the coveted 50 places available for competitors taking part in the Antarctic Ice Marathon and 100k. This year it takes places in early November and is officially the southernmost marathon in the world.
There is a classic 26.2 miles (42.195 km) marathon, the Frozen Continent Half Marathon and the Antarctic 100k footrace to choose from. The marathon is run by completing a 13.1 mile (21.2 km) route twice. The weather can be extremely unpredictable and you can expect the temperature to be around -20C. The course will be completely snow covered but the terrain is relatively flat at an average altitude of 700 m (2,300 feet). The direction of wind determines whether the race is run in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction.
SIX CONTINENTS AND SEVENTEEN COUNTRIES
The 50 competitors in this year’s race are from seventeen different countries. A Chinese television production company will be there this year to make a documentary of the event and news will be broadcast worldwide throughout the event.
GETTING THERE, ACCOMMODATION AND COST
You will fly into Santiago, Chile and then catch an onward flight to Punta Arenas. If you are not enthralled already, you certainly will be with your onward 4 hour 30 minute flight from Punta Arenas to Antarctica where you will land on a natural ice runway on the Union Glacier. From there you will be driven to Union Glacier camp where you will be staying in roomy two-man double walled tents and sleeping in polar sleeping bags. Twenty four hour sunshine keeps the tents warm and cosy. Fresh food, meat, fish, wines and beers are flown in regularly from Chile. Special dietary requirements are always met as long as you inform the company when you book. Places are full for this year, but you can book for 2015. The 100k and the two marathons are now taking place at different times of the year so more people can compete. The 100k will be held in January 2015 and the two marathons will be in November 2015. The cost is €10,800 which includes everything except your flight to and from Santiago. Don’t forget to pack your reflective belts and reflective vests so you can be easily spotted in a blizzard.