WOW !

Nothing to do with running, ultras or the stars of ultras but every now and again you see something and go, wow!

This is the inhabited island of Aogashima.

One for the bucket list… it’s just incredible. Aogashima is a small, tropical volcanic island in the Philippine Sea, under the administration of Tokyo despite being located some 358 kilometers away from the country’s capital. It is the southernmost and the most isolated inhabited island of the Izu archipelago. The island itself is a giant volcanic crater, and within that crater there’s another, smaller volcano. Aogashima is still considered an active Class-C volcano though it last erupted in the 1780′s. When last erupted it killed nearly half of the island’s population and forced the remaining inhabitants to flee. It took just fifty years for the people to return. Today, some 200 brave villagers live on the island.

Aogashima is a submarine volcano that has emerged from the sea and is part of a large crater whose outer rim height ranges from 200 m to 420 m in height. It’s believed that the island was formed by the overlapping remnants of at least four submarine calderas. Aogashima consists of the rims of the inner and outer craters. The southern coast rises to a sharp ridge forming one edge of a caldera named Ikenosawa with a diameter of 1.5 km. The caldera is occupied by a secondary cone named Maruyama, which is still emitting geothermal steam around an area where no plants are evident. Otonbu, the peak of the rim of the outer crater at a height of 432 meters above sea level, is the highest spot in the island. It commands a panoramic view of the entire volcano in the Pacific Ocean.

Located in the Kuroshio region of open seas and known for tidal wave generation, the island is barely reachable except by boat. The island has no real habour to anchor boats due to the steep rugged cliffs of layered volcanic deposits that surrounds the entire island. The other option is to take a helicopter provided by Tokyo Island Shuttle Service. Both of them depart from Hachijojima, with the nearest island some 60km away. Before the helicopter service was launched in 1993, transportation of passengers, essential goods and food products used to be made by boat only, where people hardly knew when to expect arrival. The helicopter runs once a day and carries only a maximum of 9 passengers. Many times it gets cancelled due to heavy fog, depending on the season. This is why Aogashima is still a rarely-visited island.

There isn’t much to do on Aogashima though, except enjoy the serenity of a tropical paradise. In the center of the island lies a geothermal sauna. There is a public facility utilizing the geothermal power and gas and people use it to cook. This cooker using geothermal steam is available for free. Steamed fresh vegetables, potatoes or eggs are one of the specialties of Aogashima. The facility also features a sauna, a public bath, and hot showers.

Aogashima is the smallest village in Japan. As of 2009, the island’s population was 205 and it’s decreasing. The island has a primary school with about 25 students. When they reach the age of fifteen, they would to go to high school on the mainland and nobody knows if and when they will be back to Aogashima. The folklore songs that people here sing are mostly about stories of leaving the island and parting with their loved ones.

Information duplicated and shared from : amusingplanet.com

Web Page link HERE

Trans Gran Canaria 2013

Transgrancanaria

Transgrancanaria is a race that has been held on the island of Gran Canaria since October 2003. In the Transgrancanaria participants must cross the island on foot passing through several aid stations where they can replenish their water and food supplies, also giving the organisation a chance to monitor the competitors’ progress.

The Transgrancanaria is the pioneer of this kind of event in the Canary Islands. Arista, the organizer of the race, have placed Transgrancanaria as one of the main highlights on the national , European and now, the World stage.

The Transgrancanaria is held in the first week of March and has four different races, making accessible to everyone:

  • Transgrancanaria: DISTANCE: 119km. Elevation: + 7.000 m. 31 Hours.
  • South-North Transgrancanaria: DISTANCE: 83km. Elevation: + 4.700 m. 24 Hours.
  • Media Transgrancanaria: Distance: 42km. Elevation: +- 4.000 m. 14 Hours.
  • Transgrancanaria Starter: 24km Ascent: +- 1.800 m. 10 Hours.

Transgrancanaria Map

The first edition of Transgrancanaria in October 2003 had a total of 65 participants, and over the years has grown to more than 1400 athletes, walkers, joggers and nature lovers from more than 20 countries that have decided to take the challenge of crossing the island on foot in less than 31 hours. On this route participants can find rain, sun, mud, dust … but above all they will enjoy direct contact with nature. The course is the same for everyone and will be fully marked to avoid errors.

The Transgrancanaria not intended only to test the elite, but is an event for everyone, which is why you have 31 hours to do it. The first competitors will finish in daylight and the last will finish in darkness, however all will pass through the aid stations ensuring the competitors’ safety and comfort.

Copyright Protected - www.altissima.org

Copyright Protected – http://www.altissima.org

The North Face Transgrancanaria 2013 will be on 1st, 2nd and 3rd of March and will have four races: Starter, Marathon, Advanced and Transgrancanaria. The main race (Transgrancanaria) being one of the highlights in the national and European racing calendar.

The North Face athlete, Sebastien Chaigneau 3rd in 2011 and  winner in 2012 with a time of 12:54:19 will be returning in 2013 to hopefully dominate on this rough and tough course. He will have some competition though from Salomon athletes Ryan Sandes and ‘wonder kid’ Philipp Reiter.

The ladies race will have returning champ and The North Face athlete Lizzy Hawker (**updated 18th Feb Lizzy Hawker will no longer be racing, she is still recovering from a stress fracture) and Julia Boettger fighting for the win. UPDATE – Emelie Forsberg has now confirmed that she will be racing (17th Feb 2013)

Taken from http://www.corredordemontana.com link HERE

Although some elite runners are still to be confirmed , just over a month before the start of the race, some of the most internationally renowned professionals shave secured an entry for March 2nd in Gran Canaria. Sebastien Chaigneau and other runners such as Ryan Sandes, John Tidd, Zigor Iturrieta or Portuguese Carlos Sa, are favorites to win the test.

Also included in the participation of the race is ultra legend, Italian Marco Olmo, who at 64 is still running in the most demanding tests and competing at the highest level. Like other elite runners as Aitor Leal, Llorens brothers, Philipp Reiter, Armando Teixeira, Fernanda Maciel, Nerea Martinez, Lizzy Hawker (not racing)Julia Boettger and Emelie Forsberg.

Transgrancanaria 119k Profile

Published on Mar 20, 2012

Join us in celebrating 1st place wins for The North Face®athletes Sebastien Chaigneau and Fernanda Maciel at the 123km ultra-race of The North Face® Transgrancanaria – Gran Canaria, Spain, 2nd-4th March, 2012.

I will provide an elite start list for the mens and womens race as soon as possible. I am just waiting for this information from the race officials.

Check out the race website HERE

Registrations HERE

The North Face HERE