Tourists from abroad are being invited once again to participate in this unique sporting event in which participants enjoy the pure thrill of running, either alone or as part of a group, along with the spectacular views of the Holy Land.
The Mountain to Valley Relay Race is an annual sporting event that has taken place for the last eight years in the north of Israel and organized by the Mountain to Valley (M2V) Association. Following the success of last year’s race, the relay will be open for the second time to tourists from abroad who are being invited to participate in this unique sporting event. Close to 10,000 people are expected to participate in this year’s Mountain to Valley Relay Race on May 18-20, 2016.
The event spreads over a 24-hour period with the 215 km relay run divided into 24 sections, from 5km to 14 km each. Groups of 4, 6, or 8 runners may register to enter either the competitive or non-competitive category. The race will be divided into two separate heats: the first heat will start on Wednesday evening and will finish on Thursday evening; the second heat will start on Thursday morning and will finish on Friday morning.
The idea is to give the participants the pure thrill of running, either alone or as part of a group, along with the spectacular views of the Holy Land. Most of the route sections overlay country trails, although some sections include paved roads. The trails combine views of historical importance to the three monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Starting in the north at the feet of the Roaring Lion statue in Tel-Hai, the route continues along the northern Jordan River Valley, passing the Hula Valley Nature Reserve and the northern section of the Sea of Galilee. The route then climbs and crosses the Lower Galilee mountain range, crosses the Jezreel Valley into the Mountains of Menashe – the northern leg of Mount Carmel – and finally ends at Timrat, just west of Nazareth.
The M2V Association provides the necessary support at the start and the end points, as well as supervision at the route sections exchange. Medical support is provided and medical staff available at all times. The race route is defined with clear markings, easily detected by day and night.
The Association is a non-profit organization, whose goal is to encourage long-distance running, and its connection to nature and environment. Its members, residents of Timrat, a communal village in the Jezreel Valley, engage in sporting activities, primarily long-distances running.