As one of the best known mountain marathons in the world, Jungfrau Marathon leads runners up the Bernese Oberland section of the Swiss Alps, with panoramas of the famous Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau peaks. The race was first completed in 1993 and quickly became one for the marathon runner’s bucket list soon after.
Beginning in picturesque resort town Interlaken with a lap around the town centre, the full Jungfrau marathon of 42.2 kilometres finishes on the Kleine Scheidegg mountain pass.
The deceptively flat start makes way for an almost constant uphill climb, as runners reach their highest elevation of 2205 metres towards the 40 kilometre mark. The last kilometre of steep downhill towards the finish line is both a relief and a test of the quads.
Held every year in September, registration for this route opens in February, and the 4000 available spots are known to fill almost immediately, with a long waiting list for those who missed out.
Completing a marathon such as this is never going to be easy, regardless of running pedigree. Although it’s definitely made easier when the air is clean and the vista majestic. The Jungfrau Marathon track passes through charming villages, past waterfalls and up above the tree line in places.
Post-race, it’s time to further explore the Jungfrau region, soak in some thermal pools and discover what makes Swiss life so special.
WORDS OF WISDOM
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