Running on the toughest terrains of India is no ordinary thing. It's just not about running; it's about pushing your limits, testing your endurance and feats of daring while the adventure is a constant throughout. Yes, World's Highest and Toughest Marathon, Ladakh Marathon is back again this year to leave imprints on the souls of the adventure lovers. Scheduled for this September, Ladakh Marathon is a journey, not just a marathon.
After the traumatic flash flood in 2010, this marathon started in 2012 with a message " Ladakh is back and running " to encourage the people of Ladakh to live a healthy lifestyle and prepared for harsh conditions which might occur in the future. In 2012, there were around 1,500 runners. Since then, the numbers kept on increasing as a result of more and more participation not just from the home country but also runners from around the world.
City marathons have always been adventurous but running the highest and one of the toughest marathons in the world with the scenic views pumping your adrenaline is something we all dream. Well, you can stop dreaming as Ladakh Marathon is just not for the athletes but all of us.
Ranging from elevation, difficulty level and eligibility, Ladakh Marathon has four categories:
1. Run Ladakh for Fun
Being the shortest race in the Ladakh Marathon event, it is expected to draw good crowds as every fun-loving tourist to enthusiastic locals are bound to try their luck this short sprint. There are not multiple eligibility criteria for this event but just one, you should be 12 yrs or older. Sounds interesting?
11, 500 ft
NDS Memorial Stadium – Leh Manali Highway – NDS Memorial Stadium
Indians (except Ladakh residents): ₹1800
Serving Defence Personnel and Ladakh residents: ₹900
Foreign Nationals: $135
2. Half Marathon
Half Marathon it is not the same as 7 km race as the distance is thrice. The half marathon ought to be taken apart by physically fit people like competitors and regular sprinters, as it is hard to keep running at a stretch at extraordinary statures. While passing the route, you will see the lovely city of Leh, neighbouring villages, the residence of Dalai Lama and of course the magical blue sky above and lofty mountains all around. There might be a problem that you might fall for the beauty of the place you get to witness. Don't blame us that we didn't warn you!
It ranges from 10,568 to 11, 142 ft.
NDS Memorial Stadium — Saboo Village — Leh-Manali Highway — Choglamsar Village — Indo-Tibetan Border Police Headquarters — NDS Memorial Stadium
Indians (except Ladakh residents): ₹2500
Serving Defence Personnel and Ladakh residents: ₹1500
Foreign Nationals: $50
Running a Marathon is itself a challenge but running the LADAKH MARATHON (42.1km) is even a more significant challenge. At such a high altitude, Marathon is a level up than usual marathons around the world is not for the inexperienced but the ones who have invested several months for it beforehand. If you are Marathoner by both heart and body, this one should be a "must-do", and we're sure you'll remember it throughout your life. If not, you'll target for the ultimate event " The Khardungla Challenge".
It ranges from 10,715ft. - 11,100ft.
NDS Memorial Stadium — Stakna Road — Manali-Leh Highway — Church of Shey — Sindughat — Choglamsar Village — NDS Memorial Stadium
Indians (except Ladakh residents): ₹3000
Serving Defence Personnel and Ladakh residents: ₹1800
Foreign Nationals: $65
One marathon or two half-marathons within the last 1.5yrs.
4: The Khardung La Challenge
Spanning a distance over 72km, this marathon is called the "Ultra Marathon" for a reason as even the finest of Marathoner's body start to deprive and some also fall unconscious. It's the alpha of all marathon which tests the limits of participants. Beginning from Khardung village, the route goes to one of the highest motorable pass in the world, Khardung La Pass located at an elevation of 17, 618 ft above sea level. Though it is one of the most difficult one, it requires training and dedication for many years. But once it's done, you'll have stories to tell, or you'll become a motivation story for someone. Both ways, you have mastered your heart as well as the people around the world. Kudos!
It ranges from 14,000 to17,216ft.
Khardung Village — Khardung la pass — Leh— Nubra Valley —North Pulu
Indians (except Ladakh residents): ₹9500
Serving Defence Personnel and Ladakh residents: ₹4500
Foreign Nationals: $165
Either two full marathons under 5hrs or 2 ultra marathons over 70km within the last two years.
The last date to apply
for the world's highest Marathon in Ladakh or you can say "The Ultra Marathon" is 15th July
. If you always had a burning passion for running, this event will give you a sense of achievement and let you test your limits. Moreover, the view all around has always been a plus point of Ladakh Marathon.
If you are up for it, Shoes On Loose has a specially customised Ladakh package
for such passionate runners. Give us a call and let us handle everything while you train yourself to run on hilly terrains of Ladakh.