By Tayte Pollmann for the American Trail Running Association

Original article posted on November 7, 2018. Reported for posterity!

On October 27, 2018 I witnessed the 13th edition of the Annapurna 100 trail race, organized by Trail Running Nepal offering 50 km and 100 km distances with over 3,000 and 6,000 meters of elevation gain respectively.

The Course

The races started and finished in the small Nepalese village of Dhampus in the Annapurna region of the Himalayas. (link on map) and I hiked and ran over 25 kilometers of the course with the film and photography crew during the race. On course, I hesitantly walked across a shaky wire-bridge over one-hundred feet long, danced over technical rooty downhills in dense Oregon-like forests, learned new breathing techniques running to 3,500 meters at Mardi Himal High Camp, timed my foot plants descending quickly on ancient stone steps, smiled and said “Namaste” to every runner I could, received cheers from villagers, ate Snickers at aid stations and embraced the magnificent views of the 8,000-meter Annapurna and the holy Machhapuchhare (a.k.a. The Fishtail) mountains.

I was fortunate to have spent the night before the race at Mardi Himal High Camp, the race’s highpoint. I awoke on race morning before sunrise and was greeted to the unforgettable sight of more stars than sky. The silhouettes of The Fishtail and Annapurna were slowly filled with color by sunrise. The Annapurna 100 undoubtedly provided an experience of the Himalayas that lived up to my expectations and fantasies about these majestic mountains.

Read the rest of the article on the ATRA website.

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