The Norfolk Coastal Path runs for 83 miles from Hunstanton to Hopton-on-Sea, travelling through the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). A stunning journey in its own right but we have added a couple of twists.
Firstly this event will be run in mid-December and while Norfolk may not seem that remote, when the north winds blows it comes directly from the North Pole, and with the flat and open terrain, conditions could be challenging. To give you an idea, in 2019 only 45% of runners completed the Full Sunrise. Norfolk maybe flat but this race has its own unique challenges!
Secondly the events will be run during the hours of darkness. As the sun sets in the west, you will be set off from the start in Snettisham. How far can you get before the sun rises in the east just before 8am, nearly 16.25 hours later? For the speedier runners amongst you, can you reach the finish 83 miles away by The Britannia Pier in Great Yarmouth?
If you would prefer to take a more leisurely approach, for the Full Sunrise you have until sunset on the Sunday to complete the course. There are enforced cut offs at the major checkpoint at Cley (38 miles) at 01:30 Sunday, Overstrand at 05:00 and at Sea Palling at 11:00.
Support is provided along the route but is kept to a minimum, to minimise the environmental impact of the race, avoid disturbing locals sleeping in their beds and to add to the running adventure. Three full indoor checkpoints are provided. You will have access to a drop bag at the first and also be provided with warm food and drink at each. Additional mobile checkpoints will be provided along the route but these will unmanned and limited to water and some snacks, so pack accordingly.
Some quotes from 2019 runners:
"It was fantastic! A definite life moment for me too, my first ultra."
"Fantastic people at every check point and start n finish couldn't do it without you guys Amazing all of you"
"The organisation and communication, especially pre race, was superb."
"Just wanted to do a little shout out to Giles and Mark for putting in an epic race, really well organised and the volunteers were all amazing."
"Wow! What an amazing, epic and super challenging event!! Thanks to all the organisers and marshalls for the fantastic support throughout."
"Sunrise Ultra was an amazing event & I feel very lucky to have been able to take part in in. The organisation & communication were second to none and the checkpoints at the event were just brilliant with supportive and friendly volunteers."
Half Sunrise: For those that don’t fancy the Full Sunrise, we will be offering the Half Sunrise. This starts from the half way indoor checkpoint at Cley-next-the-sea at 10:30pm and follows the same route to the finish in Great Yarmouth some 45 miles away. Indoor checkpoints are available at Overstrand and Sea Palling but no drop bag.
You have 15 hours to complete the 45 mile journey to Great Yarmouth, with the finish line closing at 13:30 on Sunday. There are no cut-offs along the route.
Medical coverage is provided throughout the event and each competitor will carry a GPS tracker, so friends and family can follow your progress.
Both should be an exhilarating pre-Christmas challenge and a great way to end the year.
Both events have been recognised as UTMB World Series Qualifier Events and part of the new qualification process announced in 2021.
As per UKA rules for races of these distances, you must be a minimum of 20 years old on the date of the event. No dogs are allowed.
We also require that Half Sunrise entrants have previously completed a trail marathon the Full Sunrise entrants have previously completed an ultra marathon of around fifty miles, in the two years prior to the event.
Full terms and conditions can be found at www.darkside.run/terms
This event offers the option to purchase Booking Protect, so that participants may be able to get a refund if they are unable to attend due to unforeseen circumstances.