European ultra-mountain-marathon festival announces 2010 event's Christmas registration

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The Independent Online

The North Face Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc 2010 will commence its pre-registration phase on December 23 for an outdoor enthusiast's favorite which offers a choice of four competitive hikes in alpine territory. Five thousand participants are expected to start the races which are designed as a combination of endurance testing, route finding and breathtaking scenery.

The six-day event, scheduled for August 24-29, 2010, sprawls over French, Italian, and Swiss mountains, and individual treks range from 98 km on the 26 hour 'Courmayeur-Champex-Chamonix' route up to 240 km and 18,000 m of altitudinal changes during the grandstand event, known as 'La Petite Trotte à Léon', a team-based ultra-hike on unmarked paths circuiting Mont Blanc itself.

Due to the potentially harsh conditions of the treks, mountain-racing enthusiasts will need to prove their ability based on past performance in other qualifying treks before paying the €50 deposit in order to book their place. Eventual race fees depend on the specific event, but enrolments start at €100 for the shorter races and rise to €510.

'La Petite Trotte' has a pre-registration closing date of January 8, whilst the 'CCC' and the two other treks, 'In the Footsteps of The Dukes of Savoy' and the original 'Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc', have a slightly later closing date of January 13.