marathon, running, travel

The Big Five Marathon

May 22, 2012
Guys, I have found a new goal!

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The Big Five Marathon!

I’m not entirely sure how I stumbled upon this website over the weekend, but I did and now I am completely obsessed. Granted, I have yet to even run my first full marathon, but that’s really just semantics :) Besides, if I got to do something as awesome as this, I would go run 100 miles tomorrow!

The Big Five is a marathon/half marathon that is located on the savannahs in South Africa. It gets it’s name from the “big five” animals that are commonly found in the savannah, aka running course: leopard, lion, elephant, rhino, and buffalo!

Even cooler? Apparently the course literally runs right through lion territory! The directors assure participants’ safety by helicopter patrolling the course to make sure hungry lions aren’t chilling on the course. They also have armed rangers scattered throughout the course to ensure the same safety.

Of course, the thrill of this course has nothing to do with the 13.1 or the 26.2. In fact, I could see myself quitting the course entirely to sit down and chill with some giraffes. I mean, SERIOUSLY. How flipping amazing would this be???

********************
Have you ever done a destination race?

Would you do a race like this or not? Too scary? Does it take away from the running aspect of the marathon?

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marathon, running, travel

The Big Five Marathon

May 22, 2012
Guys, I have found a new goal!

Source

The Big Five Marathon!

I’m not entirely sure how I stumbled upon this website over the weekend, but I did and now I am completely obsessed. Granted, I have yet to even run my first full marathon, but that’s really just semantics :) Besides, if I got to do something as awesome as this, I would go run 100 miles tomorrow!

The Big Five is a marathon/half marathon that is located on the savannahs in South Africa. It gets it’s name from the “big five” animals that are commonly found in the savannah, aka running course: leopard, lion, elephant, rhino, and buffalo!

Even cooler? Apparently the course literally runs right through lion territory! The directors assure participants’ safety by helicopter patrolling the course to make sure hungry lions aren’t chilling on the course. They also have armed rangers scattered throughout the course to ensure the same safety.

Of course, the thrill of this course has nothing to do with the 13.1 or the 26.2. In fact, I could see myself quitting the course entirely to sit down and chill with some giraffes. I mean, SERIOUSLY. How flipping amazing would this be???

********************
Have you ever done a destination race?

Would you do a race like this or not? Too scary? Does it take away from the running aspect of the marathon?

You Might Also Like

35 Comments

  • Reply Shannon @ Tales from an Average Runner May 22, 2012 at 11:44 am

    Well, I guess you would be motivated to run fast! :)

  • Reply Christina May 22, 2012 at 11:50 am

    You want to run through a lion’s own territory and then in case she tries to attack you, have a race director shoot her down? That seems really really mean for the lions.

    • Reply Kayla Carruth @ kpLoving It May 22, 2012 at 1:50 pm

      I was just thinking the same thing….I hope that never happens.

    • Reply Heather @ Just a Colorado Gal May 22, 2012 at 6:23 pm

      Me too, valid point! I googled it to see if anything had ever happened and apparently there have been zero incidents since the inception of the race so maybe it’s not really an issue and they only want you to think it is to make you feel all dangerous? Or…think they possibly use tranquilizers?

  • Reply Christine May 22, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Oh my gosh that sounds amazing!! To run by lions and rhinos, elephants, etc?? I’m not sure if that would make me run faster or make me stop altogether and just stare.

  • Reply Heidi @BananaBuzzbomb May 22, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    I found this last yr and immediately put it on my Before I Die List. Hey! Why don’t we take a trip?! That has adventure written all over it!

    • Reply Heather @ Just a Colorado Gal May 22, 2012 at 6:24 pm

      SERIOUSLY. This one jumped right up to the top of my list….coincidentally, with Kilimanjaro. Hmmm, same continent…. it’s like a sign! :)

  • Reply Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run May 22, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    I’ve heard of this race. It sounds really cool but being in S. Africa, probably too hot for me. I can hardly do races in Florida. LOL With that said, I loooooooove destination races. I try to do at least one of them a year but I definitely try for more. I guess I like seeing a new town by running through it. :-)

    • Reply Anonymous May 22, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      It won’t be hot in South Africa in June! It’s their “winter” so it should be lovely weather!

  • Reply Leah @ Chocolate and Wild Air May 22, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Shut up – that looks totally epic!! I can’t wait to try out a destination race, and combine my loves of travel and running

  • Reply Kovas Palubinskas May 22, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    A good warm-up would be the San Diego Zoo Safari Park Half Marathon!

  • Reply Megan May 22, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    I heard all about this and at first would be terrified, but agreed… it’d be a great way to ensure I run fast! :) My first destination race will be October 2013 to Budapest. :)

    • Reply Heather @ Just a Colorado Gal May 22, 2012 at 6:26 pm

      That will be awesome!! My entire family is from Hungary (hence my weird last name) but I’m the only one that has never been :( My sis even lived there during her study abroad in college! Curious to hear about the run!!!

  • Reply Christi May 22, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    That race sounds absolutely fabulous!

  • Reply Kathy May 22, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Oh my gosh – that would be amazing!!! But I would constantly be on edge for the lions!

  • Reply Mom_2_Pippa May 22, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    Sounds great!! Makes my race course warnings of rattle snakes look low key though, lol!!

  • Reply Neon Blonde Runner May 22, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    I saw an ad for this marathon this weekend too!!!! It popped up when I was looking at the arctic circle marathon :)

  • Reply Laura is Undeterrable May 22, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    My friend ran this race last year. He said it was amazing. Then he went and climbed Kilimanjaro in the same trip. Because he’s crazy.

    I would love to do a trip like this. I really want to do the Great Wall marathon.

    • Reply Heather @ Just a Colorado Gal May 22, 2012 at 6:26 pm

      The Great Wall marathon is on my list too! And…. I think your friend and I would get along :) I just mentioned the identical trip to Heidi in the comment above!

  • Reply PavementRunner May 22, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    That looks AWESOME. I wonder if there is an option to say “if something is chasing me and it looks like I am running faster than normal, please allow the animal to continue chasing me (to increase my pace) until it get’s within 15 feet.”

    If that is an option, I’d be guarnateed a PR!

  • Reply Paulette May 22, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Wow this is sweet! I’ve never heard of anything like it. :)

  • Reply hiker mom May 22, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    This would be so amazing! I am with you though, if I saw some animals, I might just stop and gaze at them for hours:)

  • Reply dawnieslife.com May 22, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    Oh wow!!!! This would be an amazing adventure/experience! I had never heard of such a race! Incredible!!!

  • Reply Ericka @ The Sweet Life May 22, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    Had to comment! This race has been on my mind lately, especially since the latest Runners World featured destination marathons. I have it in my head to run an Africa marathon and this one is on top. Are you considering signing up next year? I don’t know if I could but I’m thinking about it. I’m about to go to Africa in two weeks (not South Africa) so I’ll probably have the bug even more after that. I’m dying to do it. If you decide to go next year, let me know. Maybe I’ll say what the heck and meet you there! :)

  • Reply Nathan May 22, 2012 at 10:34 pm

    That race is just epic…makes the Bolder Boulder look like child’s play. Sounds like we need to stir up some mountain lions, slap some meat on ala the Bear Grylls deoderant commercial, de-tranquilize Ralphie, and step it up CO!

  • Reply Charlotte (@Char__Latte) May 22, 2012 at 10:37 pm

    This has been on my bucketlist for a while now. Granted I haven’t run my first full yet either… But that’s completely beside the point!!! Its like all the things I love the most combined into one event. International Travel. New Cultures. Wild Animals. Running. Safari. oh man

  • Reply Kara May 22, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    Sounds cool, but I wonder how many animals you actually get to see. I would rather do a safari I think so I could take time to enjoy the animals, but I do like the idea of running a race in Africa!

  • Reply Marcia May 23, 2012 at 12:08 am

    Might just have to put this on MY bucket list! Very cool! Have always wanted to see Africa! I wonder if you can cuddle with the cute kitties?!?

  • Reply Lena @Fit on the Rocks May 23, 2012 at 2:35 am

    That sounds freakin awesome! My destination races have been to Orange County, CA and Portland, OR, so Africa trumps both! I do think it’s the best way to race though ;)

  • Reply Sierra May 23, 2012 at 12:38 pm

    I know you mentioned Kili before….there is a Mount Kilimanjaro marathon too. I looked at it a while back, I believe it’s in august. I wish our paths would of crossed earlier, as I would of loved to have a running buddy to tackle these with. Lions scare the SHT out of me, and if I saw a snake, I would lose my marbles…you are far braver than I.

  • Reply misszippy May 23, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    I think it would be fantastic! You need to go for it!

    I did a trail race in Australia a couple of years ago. Fantastic experience–I highly recommend designation races.

  • Reply Molly May 24, 2012 at 1:19 am

    NEW LIFE GOAL! Love this

  • Reply Heidi Nicole May 24, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    That looks amazing. Seriously, they were running along and had to slow down for the giraffes in their way! I want to do this, thanks for throwing out an awesome race when I’m all “ooh, what race should I run next” mode… :|

  • Reply Clarinda @ Enjoying the Course May 27, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    Wow. Now, I totally want to do this!

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