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At the end of Kloppershoek Kloof lies...

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There is no pot of gold at the end of Kloppershoek Kloof.

There is however a slight conversation stopper.

The image below is the view looking back down the kloof. The route follows the kloof from the top of the image to where the photographer is standing, which is just after the 21km mark. 

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 At the end of the kloof lies that slight conversation stopper, the legendary Mavis Bank,

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Those small white dots on that low ridge in the middle of that ox-bow formed by the Kloppershoekspruit are runners about to start their run, or climb, up Mavis Bank to the photographer's position.

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Not sure where they are .... there they are ...

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The 4½ hour cut-off is at the top of Mavis Bank.

Next is the climb to Lesotho View. It is a climb, and there is a stunning view, clouds permitting of course!

 

Rhodes Run Buff® at MdS

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The Rhodes Run Buff® gets taken to some pretty amazing places.

The latest spot was the 31st Marathon des Sables.

Kevin Light (Snowflake No 1001) had a fantastic experience and wow)) buy celebrex 200 did exceptionally well. Knowing Kev as we do, he never has a down moment, Kev would have taken positives from every step, every dune, every grain of sand and relished every moment. Kev's Rhodes Run Buff® was his wash cloth, towel and Buff® through his Sahara adventure. 

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Congratulations Kev. Darn good show!

 

Kisch IP Wild Card goes to ...

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                                                      KischIP-WildCard-draw16
                                                       Rob Richardson (Kisch IP) draws the 2016 Wild Card winner
                                                      ...and the winner is ...
                                                      Jaco Jacobs (below finishing the 2015 Rhodes Run)
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                                                      Jaco will also receive a hamper from Llama Bar and a
                                                      limited edition 2016 Rhodes Run crew Buff®

 

 

 

First Choice Wild Card winner is ...

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AlexJeffrey-FirstChoice-WildCard2016

 

Looking back on 20 years

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This year marks the twentieth year Evie Raubenheimer has been at the helm of the Rhodes Trail Run. Evie has been involved with the run for 27 years in total.

Twenty years "wintering in Rhodes with a few hundred good friends, what could be nicer?" is how Evie describes it. The most common question asked of Evie over the years has been "Which year stands out most?". So that is what we asked.

 Without hesitation Evie replied "2002 and 2012"

"The road from Barkly East to Rhodes was a highway in 2002. Very few if any corrugations, the streams were clear and there was a little snow on the peaks. Things were looking good for the run.

It started snowing on the Monday evening. Great excitement, we were going to have some snow lying around for the weekend. Perfect.

By Thursday morning we had a lot more than just a little snow lying around. The phone was ringing  non stop and the same question was asked. Is the race still on? By mid morning the Kloppershoek road to Mavis Bank was a no-no. Some of our race requirements were stuck in snow outside Elliot. Then an ominous call. SAPS Disaster Management in East London advised that they strongly recommended that the race be cancelled. Time to take a trip to the Rhodes Police Station, and after much discussion on a suitable new course, Disaster Management was contacted and all seemed OK. More snow and www.ecomedia-europe.net still more snow fell.

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Crew accommodation turned into igloos - 2002 Heading out to Bobbejaanskop - 2002

On Friday morning two 4 x 4 vehicles travelled to Barkly to open the road from Rhodes leaving tracks for vehicles coming to Rhodes.

The recce team out on the road trying to plot a new course was having difficulty getting up Naude's Nek. It was only 14.5 km to the eventual turn point on Naudes Nek near Bobbejaanskop. With a loop to Mavis Bank Farm we had a route. Rather slippery underfoot but full of potential fun.

The 'Road Closed' sign was up outside Barkly and it had stopped snowing. Convoys of cars were coming into the village from Barkly – most of them ordinary sedans with very proud drivers who were totally pumped having arrived safely. Some 4 x 4's were tested for the first time.

The postman knocked on the door – he was wearing a policeman's uniform. This time it was a request from Disaster Management that we cancel the run. Sign with a witness and return. They advised that unfortunately SAPS would not be able to assist if anything happened as there were a number of disaster areas. Still the convoys came into the village. The pubs were filling up and the Rhodes Run vibe had arrived. The KZN guys were phoning every hour reporting on their progress. Others sent SMS's to say that they could get no further and were unfortunately, and with a heavy heart, turning back.

Decision made. We would run. We had a new route. We ran up Naudes Nek to Bobbejaanskop, then on the way back to Rhodes a loop to Mavis Bank Farm. Still an ultra distance, and more importantly safer even if a little shorter. New feed station positions were planned and yes it had not snowed for a few hours.

At 2am on Saturday morning the check in list was scrutinized. No word or contact from about 15 runners. Were they safe? had they had an accident? was their car buried in snow? had they listened to the incorrect radio reports stating that the race had been cancelled? had the police at van Reenen's / Kokstad / Ugie / Elliot turned them back? So many questions. So few answers.

Race day and the rest is history. The front runners encouraged the back runners, and visa versa. Oh yes, the snow saw to it that there was no electricity in the village. We had a marvelous event thanks to our runners, who were most determined to get to Rhodes and levitra online canada no prescription participate. Thanks also to the Rhodes SAPS who assisted us on the day.

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Frozen crew at the '3-Way Feed Station' - 2002 Postcard route - 2002

The Rhodes Run is certainly never boring.

And yes, it did start snowing again on the Sunday."

"Then ten years later we had another route change, and this time our runners ran in falling snow." 

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 Check Point & Turn #1 - 2012  Check Point & 'Original' Turn #2 - 2012

"We had created fall-back plans to ensure the race would go ahead no matter what weather was thrown at us. We had six route options available. Weather forecasts early in 'race week' indicated that the weekend would probably have severe conditions with rain and snow. Our team was fully briefed mid-week on the various route options and contingencies.

Darrell and I had very little sleep that week. We were up at 3am on Saturday and drove out on the route. Darrell was walking those frozen rivers at 4am, checking depth and safety. 
We drove up Carlislehoek past our planned runner turn-point. The drive was quite nerve wracking up the hair-pin bends towards the cement strip. The vehicle was slipping all over as the heavy overnight rain had turned the pass into a deadly mud track. At one stage we nearly slid over the edge.
 
We decided on our route option ‘F’  as it kept the runners off the high ground and accessible to our medical team and antibiotic drugs importantly that route option was designed to ensure a safe event for our crew and runners, while at the same time would give our runners a challenging and safe run.
 
Darrell outlined the revised course during the pre-race briefing, stressing that the intention was to have a safe route. There were a few disappointed faces that the legendary Mavis Bank was not part of the revised route, and some runners felt that a run that avoided hills and was only on the dirt tracks would be too easy. A thought that was quickly discarded when conditions deteriorated further." 
 
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Route Option 'F' - 2012  Finishing a memorable run - 2012
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Not an easy day at Rhodes - 2012 Running in falling snow is best in others photos! - 2012
 
Shortly after the start snow was falling on our runners. Magic!
A short while later the snow storm was hitting Check Point 2 at the Mavis Bank farmhouse with some force. Darrell, who had reached the Check Point as the 2nd and 3rd placed runners were heading back to the Kloppershoek T-junction, contacted me via sat-phone and said that as conditions were deteriorating he was going to start a ‘rolling Check Point’ to get the field back to Rhodes before anyone got hypothermic. A rather innovative and creative solution taken on the fly to look after our runners. The ‘rolling Check Point’ shortened the run by an hour and buy valtrex online uk more for every runner other than the front 17 who ran the complete route ‘F’.
 
Decisions taken during a run, especially in extreme conditions are always difficult calls, and only in hind-sight can decisions be evaluated. That bold and decisive move to have a 'rolling Check Point' proved correct, as no runner needed medical attention at the Finish.
 
One of our runners, Paddy Cloete, celebrated her 40th birthday on race day and had a huge smile all day. Running in falling snow one of her best ever birthday presents.
Overall a good enjoyable Rhodes Run. Always an adventure!" 
 

After her run in 2012 Janine Mazery wrote "It is on a day like this where your body is overwhelmed with the elements around, that runners are reminded that winning isn’t about coming first; it’s about competing with your greatest competitor – yourself and never giving up. 

The 24th Rhodes Trail Run is definitely an event which will go down in the history books as something more than just a trail run.  The organisation of the event was remarkable, the complete dedication to the runners safety by the organisers was paramount and the first class support from the race volunteers, especially in such extraordinary conditions, was supreme. Runners would not have been able to have made such breathtaking memories had it not been for the race committee and volunteers."

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A Buff® was important for all crew ...  ... and every runner in 2012

And the stories of Evie sending her husband and one of her sons back home as they did not have their ID with them at Registration ... totally true!

 

 Photo credits: Craig Muller | Backyard Adventures and Rhodes Run archives

 

Closing Date

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The first Closing Date, for 2015 qualifiers and the first tranche from the Waiting List, was on 17 February.

The second Closing Date, which only applies to those who received invitations with the second tranche from the Waiting List, is today, 5 May.

If you have not received confirmation that your entry has been received, then it has not been received.

Remember no late entries will be considered. Period.

 

Substitution of accepted entries closes at 12 noon on 15 June.

 

Wild Card from Kisch Krew

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The team who will greet, sooth and look after you at the top of Mavis Bank has a Wild Card opportunity.

If you are keen to run the 28th Rhodes Run head over to the Kisch Krew Twitter page here

As a bonus your entry will assist Kisch Krew with their 2016 project in Zakhele.

Not only will the winner receive a Wild Card invitation to the Rhodes Run, he/she will also receive a hamper from Llama Bar and a limited edition 2016 Rhodes Run crew Buff®, all of which should make someone rather happy!

Enties close on 6 May and the draw takes place on 9 May.

Hey, it's a Wild Card, get in there!

 

Rhodes offers 'Wild Card' to Rhodes

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WILD CARD opportunity

..... be in this picture

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Craig Muller captures a 2014 runner cresting one of the (many) hills while snow falls

Image courtesy Craig Muller - Backyard Adventures

 

Rhodes  has made available a ‘Wild Card’ invitation for the 2016 run.

Really easy - all you need to do is send your name, mobile phone number and the name of your favourite Rhodes product to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

AND ... that's not all ...

The winner will also receive a hamper of Rhodes product

Closing date for entries Tuesday 17 May 2016
 
Brilliant news is that it is not only a runner who will benefit from this competition.
Rhodes will once again donate product to the Zakhele Rhodes Public School.
Thank you Rhodes.
 
Competition conditions:
• The ‘Wild Card’ invitation will be done by way of a draw. The draw will be monitored by PKF (Port Elizabeth).
• The prize is one (1) complimentary ‘Wild Card’ invitation to the 2016 Rhodes Run and a hamper of Rhodes product.
  All incidental costs such as travel, accommodation, meals, drinks etc will be for the winner’s own cost.
• The winner’s completed ‘Wild Card’ invitation/entry form to be returned to the organisers no later than 31 May 2016.
• All standard Rhodes Run entry criteria, as stipulated by the event organisers, will apply.
• Draw will take place on Wednesday 18 May 2016.
• Winner will be notified telephonically, and will be announced on the Rhodes Run website.
• Organisers decision will be final.
 
Zakhele Rhodes Public School 
Some of the contributions facilitated by the Rhodes Run for the Zakhele Rhodes Public School in recent years:
•  Wall panel heaters installed in every classroom
•  New school shoes and two pairs of mohair socks for every pupil
•  TVs & DVD players in every classroom
•  Sports equipment and sports team uniforms
•  Box libraries – which significantly increased the in classroom & after-hours reading by pupils
•  Educational material for all Grades.
•  Winter clothing for pupils
•  Internet access
 


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