‘Crazy’ new challenge – Margaret River Running Festival


'Crazy' new challenge

Margaret River Running Festival

It’s the staircase so extreme; it has its own name.margaret river running festival crazy steps

So when organisers of this year’s Margaret River Running Festival (taking place Sunday 18 October) went looking for a new challenge to offer participants, it went without saying that “The Crazy Steps” would take centre stage.

“I’d heard about these so called “Crazy Steps” for years,” says event director, Neil Fox.

“I knew that the local trail runners used them as part of their course but it was only recently I was actually able to find them. They are literally out in the middle of nowhere which also just happened to make a perfect half way mark for this years’ new addition to the festival.”

The steps, all 183 of them, will be one of many challenges facing participants in the new 15 kilometre Trail Run section of the festival.

Runners will head south from Surfers Point along the beaches of Prevelly and Gnarabup before hitting the long straight Boodjidup Beach and it’s there they’ll come face to face with the steps.

“From there, assuming they make it up the stairs, runners will link up with the Cape to Cape track for a distance and finish back where it all began at Surfers Point,” Mr Fox says.

“It’s an exciting new addition to the existing courses on offer and will definitely appeal to anyone with an interest in trail running.”

“There is quite a healthy trail running scene in Perth and it’s certainly well represented in the South West.”

Trail running itself has seen a significant spike in interest over the years and Mr Fox says it was hoped the addition would breathe new life into the festival.

“The feedback we have been getting over the years is that runners are looking for a new challenge,” he says.

“There is quite a healthy trail running scene in Perth and it’s certainly well represented in the South West.”

Coordinator of Margaret River Trail Runners, Rod Bennet, says trail running offered a challenging combination of physicality and endurance coupled with a chance to take in some scenery along the way.

“For starters, you really get the feeling of being outside in a way running on a road just doesn’t offer,” Mr Bennet says.

“Sure, you might come back with a couple cuts and bruises but at the same time, that’s half the fun of it.”

He also says the region is tailor made for trail running and that the iconic Crazy Steps would test the mettle of anyone up for the challenge.

“They’re our equivalent of Heartbreak Hill in Sydney or Jacob’s Ladder in Perth,” Mr Bennet says.

“But they just so happen to be located on one of the most beautiful beaches in Margaret River; not that that makes them any easier!”

About Margaret River Running Festival Read: 5 great running trails to get stuck into


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