Cappadocia (ultra) trail Turkey

Some events have something magical. You sign up, but you do not really know exactly what to expect. You have the feeling that it’s going to be special, but how special … you never know. The organization provides lots of information of the (ultra) trail. More than enough to properly align your clothes and gear for the trip. You are prepared for the distance and try to imagine the area where you’re walking. I can’t blame myself… This was impossible to imagine. What a beauty, what an experience and what a great organization with volunteers.

Awareness
Meanwhile, I’m finished. I’ve completed the whole the route. The realization of what I’ve experienced over there, comes to me regularly afterwards. I mean … just now I recognize how special the Cappadocia trail actually was. By seeing all the pictures, movies. All those great moments that came in like a rollercoaster in 20 hours of trailrunning.
The Cappadocia Ultra Trail … Definitely in my top 3 of memorable bucketlist trails. I went, experienced and I will never forget. What a special, very intense and unique trail with a huge variety of paths. The combination of the special environment elements, the friendly organization and international and colorful participants provides an unforgettable setting. This Cappadocia (Ultra) Trail earns for any lover of (ultra) trailrunning a prominent place at the top of his or her “to-do list ‘

The Cappadoccappadocia_ultra_trail_2016_chris_van_beem_-117ia Ultra Trail in 2016.
The Cappadocia region is in the interior of Turkey. You’ll find the basecamp of this trail in the old town of Urgup. This is a cozy, typical town, which suddenly gets quite a bit sporty tourist these days.
All athletes with the recognizable Trail-Gear to the body or the feet. During these days here in Urgup you’ll get directly confronted with these positive healthy energy that you can find is in the beautiful and special events. Together with the generosity of the local population, the ignorance of some of the participants and the tension for the race when approaching the starting time made this and unforgettable experience. All of this gives the participants some distinctive look and some certain we are about to start flow. And yes, then nationality doesn’t matter, because we are all human and traveled with the same approach here. All 41 nationalities that were represented, go for the same experience of the unknown. Some go for a fast time, others for the great experience and a good time, but all participants came for the same purpose; Complete the Cappadocia Ultra Trail with beautiful memories!

It’s all perfectly arranged by the organization. Friday night at the pasta party you can leave your dropbag. Sabine and I choose to do this Saturday morning around 6: 30h. In a friendly atmosphere the runners for 110 and 61km come together in the start area. A head lamp is not needed yet because the dusk slowly releases the bright blue clear sky. It’s cool but with arm-sleeves and a T-shirt it’s fine. A little before 7 o’clock we were ready to go. There is an nice atmosphere and the day will be long. These are those special moments. This is what you have chosen and trained for. This is it. This is why we’re traveling as a sports lover. The last choices have been made with regard to clothing to start the ultra-trail in the best possible way. Everything is controlled from food to the dropbag which is available at the 59km. Finally, you stand there in the start area with hundreds of other participants. We’re ready and under a loud shout the first runners pass the starting line, up to the first hill. We start a few seconds after the first runner .. with a big smile and the realization that the adventure for us in the unknown Cappadoicia has begun. It feels good, up to 110km trail paths in the interior of Turkey.

The environment
It’s always an open question; “What will bring the trail today. In advance you are informed about the route of the (ultra) trail with its possibilities and impossibilities. But in one way or another we are always dependent on the nature that leaves a mark in her own way during the day. Today we can be satisfied with this thick solid blue color in the sky. Only the bright sun interrupts the blue color and creates a temperatures around 26 degrees. What a day, what a setting.

I walked several trails in many places over the world. Mostly in the mountains such as the Alps, the Pyrenees or the Dolomites. Great different environments, each with its unique identity. You become captivated by the beauty and the environment brings a certain sense of purity and frankness. “I’m so small” is a typical remark of mine as I look around in such an environment. These are such strong feelings that makes me (and many of my friends) travel regularly to the mountains every year to experience this feeling again.

Initially it was that feeling that I was trying to find the Cappadocia Ultra Trail. The recognizable feeling of the mountains …. Only … it gave me a completely different feeling. Cappadocia is very different … I could say, Cappadocia is unique. During the route we are faced with many special places within a diverse environment. Lithologies formed by natural elements and time. Beautiful villages that are included within the scope of the rocks and lots and lots of culture. Beautiful pieces of green nature and the equally lovely residents who received us kindly. The pure nature of the particular routes left a lasting impression on me. Cappadocia is also known for its hot air ballooning. A wonderful way to see the area from above. Frankly, I praised myself lucky that I was able to walk the 117km. At the sharp end is different than hanging above.

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