Kicking off on July 25, the 35th annual Swissalpine will have a lot of changes in Davos, Switzerland and will be a bit different due to the coronavirus crisis. The largest mountain running event in Graubünden this year takes place with a reduced program over two days. The new prime event, the K68 (68 km), and the tried and tested K23 (23 km) will be held on Saturday July 25th. The next day, mountain runners will have the opportunity to participate on the classic mountain marathon K43 (43 km) and the K10 (10 km).
The organizers of the 35th Swissalpine will benefit from the latest easing of the Swiss Federal Council’s coronavirus measures. Since the four competitions are assessed individually and are spread over two days with different start times, a maximum of 1000 participants can compete per run. Depending on the number of registrations, the start takes place in blocks and not in the usual mass start manner. This measure ensures compliance with the social-distancing rules: time measurement is triggered individually on the starting line by means of a chip that every runner carries. The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) generally attaches importance to compliance with the social-distancing rule, beginning with the start number issue. Furthermore, the committee appeals to participants to be personally responsible for their actions. Contrary to established practice, cloakrooms / showers, exposition, day nursery, large screen and catering will not be available in the Davos sports stadium this year.
The focus of the 35th Swissalpine is the K68 with its start and finish in Davos. The start of the new supreme discipline prime event is expected to take place on the Saturday morning of July 25th in two blocks at 7.30 a.m. and 8 a.m. The K68 leads over four passes (Scalettapass, Sertigpass, Fanezfurgga, Äbirügg), the unique panoramic trail between Scalettapass and Sertigpass and through no less than eight valleys: Landwassertal, Dischmatal, Val Funtauna, Val Sartiv, Chüealptal, Ducantal, Oberalptal and Sfertal. The varied and scenic route is 67.6 kilometers long. It involves a total of 2606 meters of altitude difference to be overcome. The Swissalpine gives most mountain running specialists the first opportunity to start after the coronavirus lockdown. Moreover, there is a pronounced line-up of top athletes from abroad. Fast Swiss orienteering runners have likewise already registered.
In addition to the new K68, the K23 will be the second competition on 25th July. It leads from Klosters over 24 kilometers to Davos with an ascent of 634 meters and a descent of 235 meters. The K23 is an insider tip for connoisseurs. It follows the tracks of the earlier Walser. The route leads through a wildly romantic gorge to the Wolfgang Pass and then along Lake Davos to the destination.
The K43 and K10 will be held on Sunday, July 26. This classic mountain marathon traverses the first and the final phases of the K68. On the 42.7 kilometers, 1324 meters of altitude have to be mastered. The K43 leads through the Dischma Valley, then follows the former mule track up to the Scalettapass, further over the panorama trail to the Sertigpass and then via the Sertig Valley to the finish in Davos.
Those who prefer a more relaxed atmosphere, yet still share the Swissalpine experience with the world elite, can take part on the K10 on July 26. The 9.3-km long route with 163 meters difference in altitude, leads to Clavadel and back to the Davos sports stadium.
Announcement from Swissalpine. For the very latest information on this race and registration please visit the Swissalpine website.
Editor’s Note: Be safe as we continue to navigate the uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic. Please continue to follow the recommendations and updates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including proper hygiene practices. Also consider reading iRunFar’s COVID-19: A Trail Running and Ultrarunning Community Guide.