Who loves a winding route coupled with a great loss and gain of trail elevation?
Last Friday, March 8, the people behind Merrell brought us to one of the scenic and magnificent views of San Mateo, Rizal where a Camp Site stood near the previous dumpsite of the surrounding Metro – Camp Mt. Sinai in Pintong Bukawe (no, this is not the door going to Bocaue, Bulacan). The purpose was to check out what's in store for the 5K and 10K runners of the 4th Merrell Adventure Run.
The race route has some part of one of the favorite and secret training grounds of a few runners among the trail running community and of mountain bikers traversing from Sitio Cabading in Antipolo towards the trails of Timberland Heights in San Mateo, Rizal.
Consisting of technical terrains, rolling hills, rough dirt roads, crevices on single tracks, rocky boulders not just along the river but also along the slope of the trails going down, and varying elevations ranging from 240-feet to 1,433-feet, it will prove what the Race Director Thumbie Remigio said during the test run that “this is going to be the toughest yet among the previous trail races of Merrell Adventure Run”. Be not dismayed though as the views will surely stun you along the mountain ranges that you will come across the route.
All distance categories will begin at Mt. Sinai at 1,433-feet or 436-meters above sea level (masl) elevation.
|5K Route Map (click to download higher resolution)|
The 5K distance which is most advisable for beginner trail runners will have an approximate total elevation gain and loss of 207-masl with expected lowest elevation of 361-masl or a drop of 75-meters from the highest peak which is a few meters from the finish line. Albeit short, it will be enough to suffice your curiosity for the trails and sweat you out as you challenge the final slope going to the finish line.
|10K Route Map (click to download higher resolution)|
For the more adventure and heart-pumping trail seeker, the 10K participants will be tested twice the challenge as what the 5K runners have, but reaching much lower elevation of 354-masl or a drop of 82-meters from the highest peak towards a Wawa river traverse. Their strength will be tested throughout the route of varying terrains and hills gathering an approximate total elevation gain and loss of 593-masl.
|21K Route Map (click to download higher resolution)|
As for the more veteran on the trails, or those who are more elevation daring, and distance loving 21K participants, they will be dropping down to the lowest elevation of 73-meters, or 363-masl from the highest peak. There will be two river crossings as the runners will also traverse the Kasili River which is adjoining the Wawa River after the 3rd water station. The total elevation gain will be a winding 917-masl and loss of 914-masl that will surely test the strength and endurance of both your legs and lungs.
Enjoy some of the photos that I was able to capture before and after the test run:
|The view that greeted us early in the morning|
|The concrete tablet (not a touchscreen) atop Mt. Sinai|
|If the real stone tablet of the 10 commandments is this big, Moses could be a giant|
|The first entry-point from the starting line|
|Sirs Rene and Nonoy taking a short break at the cafe on a romantic and scenic background|
|Sir Thumbie attacking the final slope towards the finish line...|
|...so did Sir Rene and Kuya Nonoy|
|...at magpapahuli ba ako? :)|
|Julito Pauly and Sir Thumbie (and a dog) discussing some trail topics|
|That pointed peak is also part of the route (kidding!)|
|More views on the other side|
|Post-run boodle fight|
You may also check the JazzRunner's take about the sneak peak with some of his own test route photos. Other photos may also be viewed on my facebook album and registration details at the event announcement post.
Note: The race will be an eco-friendly event so each participant is required to bring their own hydration system (and trail foods as well). There are also a very limited public transportation available going to Pintong Bukawe, thus, if you don’t have your own ride or are not familiar with the race venue, it will be much better if you avail of the shuttle service upon registration.