Runners on ice: Polar Circle Marathon
By Daeja-lee Conner
On Oct. 25-29, optimistic runners from across the world will line up across the vast ice sheets of Kangerlussuaq, Greenland to begin a 26.2 mile race in harsh cold conditions as a testament to their true athletic strength.
Albatros Adventure Marathons will host its 6th annual Polar Circle Marathon where they will host a 42.195 km marathon in Greenland for only the most equipt runners across the world. The which is open to all runners over the age of 18 costs 1,898 Euros, which is the equivalent to 2,185 US dollars. Runners will get a chance to meet others runners as dedicated as they are in the five day event.
On Oct. 25, runners will be flown out to Greenland where they will receive the tour of the route that they will be running. The day after participants will stay in the Polar Lodge and get a free day to explore the terrain or relax before the race.
On Oct. 27, the main event takes place with the marathon beginning at 8:30 am. Runners have a maximum of seven hours to complete the run before the race concludes. Any runners who are not finished with the race when the seven hour mark hits will be escorted by security to the finish line. Runners that complete the race in five hours or less receive the Polar Bear Reward and are held in high regard for being one of the top runners in the world.
On Oct. 28 runners have the option to participate in a half marathon race or hold back and relax for their final two days in the snow caps.
“The experience was absolutely fantastic and unique. Running the [marathon] was brutal and lovely at the same time! Sussane Elsel, a 2016 Polar circle runner stated.
Contestants experience running on ice caps and glaciers, overlooking a variety of sights along the route, and enduring extreme cold conditions with temperatures dropping below 7 degrees fahrenheit.
“I got all that I wanted: extremely cold temperatures, amazing landscapes on the ice cap and along the road, and end of the world feeling. The atmosphere between runners at Polar Lodge was very friendly, [and the marathon] is such a good idea [to participate in],” stated 2015 Polar Circle Marathon Finisher Nicolas Muller.
Although conditions may seem hard overall, runners are left with a sense of accomplishment and an experience of a lifetime. The Polar Circle Marathon provides runners a sense of challenge as they run against the harsh, cold weather of Greenland and trek through its snowy grounds.