Sky Run Zim Trail and Information
Wake up 4:00 to the trusted alarm on your phone, silence, rub your eyes, one leg out and then the other, get the shorts you have waited to wear for so long on, your SkyRun Zim shirt and your trusted shoes. Make your way up from your tent to the Far and Wide dinning hall, where nervous chat and anxious sky runners await. Breakfast is ready, lets get some fuel. Finish breakfast, go psyche yourself up and do a last check of your equipment, ready for the trail that awaits you. Hear the ten minute call, look up, everyone is making their way to the start. Waiting at the start, last minute instructions are given, you feel the nerves. Your senses are suddenly alert to the birds and the wind in the early morning cold mountain air. You hear the horn sound and you are off.
The trail starts at Far and Wide boarding the Mutarazi falls National park.
STAGE 1 – THE PUNGWE GORGE
Run along the Honde Valley escarpment enjoying the morning sun from one the many views. Wind your way to the start of your first descent to the base of Chikorokoto Mountain. Cross a few streams and begin the first major ascent to the top of the Chikorokoto ridge. Stop and take in the pungwe gorge turn left and summit Chikorokoto run along the ridge to the descent into the Pungwe gorge. Once in the gorge run along the pungwe river down stream to the first food station at confluence. Those who are doing it as a relay will pass the baton onto the next runner.
STAGE 2 –
Leave confluence and cross the Pungwe river. You will come to one of the hardest climbs of the run, out of the gorge up to Nyazengu (this is the shortest but probably a very close second when it comes to the toughest section of the race due to the nature of the climb). Run along one of the most unbelievable escarpments you will see before coming to the end of stage 2 at the base of the intimidating Mt Nyangani where you will find the second nutrition station. THIS IS THE START OF THE LITE!
STAGE 3 –
Undoubtedly the toughest section of the run, but probably the most rewarding. Imagine running on the top of the highest mountain in Zimbabwe. Leave Nyazengu and run towards Mt Nyangani past golden pools. Reach the base of Nyangani and begin the hardest climb of the run. Once you have summited Mt Nyangani run along the plateau to the sumit! Then back until you begin the descent Towards the Eastern Highlands tea plantations. From here you will have a spectacular view of Mozambique and the cascading tea fields below you. Run through a beautiful spiny tree fern forest down what seems like a never ending montane forest until you come to the beautiful Nyamingura river. Cross the river and it is all down hill to the finish line which you will find on Aberfoyle’s 9 hole golf course.
There are three different legs to the SKY RUN Ultra Marathon, that begins at Far and Wide Zim- babwe, (1843metres) and finishes at Aberfoyle Lodge (828metres). The total distance of the SKY RUN is 51.3kms. The light will end at golden pools 2nd food station.
Runners must bring all necesities for a self sufficient run, however there are three food station along the trail.
These have been put in place for a number of reasons:
1.Check on runners.
2.Check runners equipment.
3.Give runners a short break to take on fuel and water.