Photo Diary: Running Around Monte Rosa – UTMR Race Route

What’s your ideal holiday? Mine is somewhere in the mountains… I like spending as much time as I can up there – running, fast-packing, hiking or just walking. Anything will do, as long as it’s up and down, on the trails and rocks.  The more days spent there, the better. 

Running the Tour Monte Rosa

Four days running around Monte Rosa (Tour Monte Rosa) sounded like the best holidays. If you can call it a holiday. I decided to join Lizzy Hawker and a group of eager trail runners to run the ultra race route which will be available in 2017. It’s harder than UTMB! So with minimal training in my legs but on 3 August I was sat on the plane to Geneva; nervous but excited.  

The Monte Rosa Tour (TDR) is a circular hiking trail through the Swiss & Italian Alps around Monte Rosa massif.  With around 170K (when you get lost a few times) in length and with the highest point of 3,301 m, it’s one of the finest long-distance hikes in the Alps. 

The stage destinations are well-known: Zermatt, over the Theodul Pass to Cervinia, Alagna, Macugnaga, and back into Switzerland via the Monte Moro Pass, to Saas-Fee and Grächen.

170K, the full Tour Monte Rosa route, 4 days, 12 hours every day! Magic.

Here’s my photo diary, full blog post coming soon. 

Day 1: Grächen – Zermatt

Running UTMR Route Day 1 - Grachen to Zermatt - the dream team

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - Breaking the rules with Lizzy

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grächen - Zermatt - bridge

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - Europaweg sign

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - feet up

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - food stop

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - Glacier

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - going through mountains

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - happy feet

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - Lizzy and Anders

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - mountain tunnel crossing

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - mountains

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - my signature pose with Zermatt

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - technical terrain

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - technical trail

Running UTMR route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt - OMG tshirt

Running UTMR Route - Day 1 - Grachen - Zermatt

 

Day 2: Zermatt – Theodul Pass – Cervinia

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - Glacier crossing in the snow

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - Glacier crossing

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - highest point

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - Long descent

Ruuning UTMR Route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Cervinia - full TMR route

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - Glacier crossing - highest point

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - Descents

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - descending

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - climbing

Running UTMR route - Day 2 - Zermatt - Theodul Pass - Cervinia - brueil -

 

Day 3: Cervinia – Alagna – Macugnaga

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - signature pose with Monte Rosa

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - perfect mountains

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - my mountains

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - Italian sign

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - me with Lizzy

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - Monte Rosa

Running UTMR route - Day 3 - Cervinia - Alagna - Macugnaga - mountains

Day 4: Macugnaga – Monte Moro Pass – Saas-Fee – Grächen

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen with Emma

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - with Jana

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - way down

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - lake

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - on the way down

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - descending

Running UTMR route - Day 4 - Macugnaga - Monte Moro Pass - Saas-Fee - Grächen - on top of Monte Moro Pass

 

Tough, wild, brutal but the most beautiful 4 days!

Thank You / Danke / Grazie / Dakujem / Merci Lizzy and the mountains

 

Lenka Istvanova

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