Matterhorn Ultraks EXTREME
25k 2,876m d+ d-
A very demanding, dangerous, but beautiful course that many skyrunners want to experience! Held in Zermatt. Zermatt is what you probably assume it is. Very touristic, expensive, but also, very beautiful. The Iconic Matterhorn, Toblerone, makes the village shine. Though you don’t really appreciate that it is car-free, since there are loads of mini vehicles driving nonstop here and there for delivery, taxi, etcetera. And you can’t hear them very well, so a couple of times we were very close to be mashed potatoes.
However. We parked the Pearl down in Täsch, 8 k down, and biked up to Zermatt to an apartment we had booked. We had to return several times to pay the parking since we could only pay for 50hours at a time, and came already on Tuesday. (Race was held on Friday).
It was nice to don’t have any stress, and we could run and hike on many trails in the area beforehand. Though we didn’t check the course. I had run it 2019 and pointed to Lina approximately how the course went from the trails we ran. I had a night mare run last time, with no energy at all, but the last 10k was a blast. I was tempted to once again try this extreme course with steep and technical parts and winding trails at the end.
We had a cozy brekkie at 5 am and felt pretty OK in our legs on the warmup at 7.20. The first uphill we both felt like mountain goats and lead before women like Johanna Åström, Hillary Gerardi, Iris Pessey and Stephanie Kröll. Though halfway up my tiptoeing on the little trail wasn’t as fast as the powerwalking with poles. Gerardi, Pessey and Kröll came like a team and passed me walked with big legs, not at all showing they are as short as I am. My first thought was I could keep up with my running. But after a couple of minutes I really missed my Leki poles..
The uphill got steeper and we went out from the trail into the scrambling section. A drone was following me by the side, but suddenly crashed into the mountain wall. Sorry, I would have loved to see the video though..
I took it easy in the very technical downhill with lots of loose rocks and small stones. Some guys passed and also two girls. I really tried not to lose the sight of them though. I had fun and enjoyed the time. Up to the first aid station by the hut was Okay, my legs weren’t out of energy as I had felt 2019, and after the hut on the traverse there were much more snow so easier to run. The glacier was also covered in snow, so we didn’t need crampons.
After the glacier I had a dip, and one more girl passed me. In the downhill I just tried to survive, I hold and didn’t push. Now I missed the flying feeling I had found 2019, I couldn’t find it and didn’t have any flow. By the second and last aid station I was 5 metres from one of the girls, since she stop by the station. I took my chance and didn’t stop. But she saw me and speed up. I had nothing more to give, and just finished the last k with a smooth run.
Lina came 5th after 4 very strong women.
We decided not to participate on the VK as planned. But hiked up to watch and cheer the others on. And had a magical run down to Zermatt again.