Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Saroma Lake 100km Ultramarathon

The Saroma Lake 100km Ultramarathon
Held every year in late June.

100km and 50km divisions.

One of the most popular and celebrated ultra-marathons in Japan.
Run with close to 5000 others around the beautiful Saroma Lake.

Apply by March 11, 2011

Date: June 26th, 2011
The last Sunday in June.

This is a fantastic event and I can't say enough about it. There are so many people on the course that you are almost never running alone. That alone helps a lot. There is either a water stop or a water and food stop every 2.5km. The support of the other runners and of all the volunteers on the course is phenomenal. This is one of the most famous and well attended ulras in Japan for good reason.

People who have completed this ultra 10 times get preferred treatment. If you are in Japan for the long haul, why not give it a try in 2011 or 2012?

Official Homepage

City of Kitami - in English


Please click on the Saroma label for the most up-to-date information on this race.  Also be sure and check the comments.


Basil said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Basil said...

Hi, I am looking at potentially making this race my first 100km attempt but not until 2012. However, I am finding information on the race (in English) very difficult to come by. Who is the best person or where can I go to get reliable information on the event? Kind regards, Basil (Melbourne, Australia).

Clint said...

Great that you are looking to try this wonderful event. I did it in 2006 and it was a great experience. I think you will find plenty of English information from users on Dailymile or is all in Japanese but there are groups dedicated to English and to this race. Dailymile is in English and there are many people living in Japan on Dailymile who have done this race.
You can also ask me any question that you have here and I will do my best to answer them.

Basil said...

Hi Clint

Thanks for the reply. I apologise for the double entry but it was my first time logging in and wasn't sure my message had gone through the system.

Thanks for the information. I think that aside from the race itself, the biggest challenge will be getting information. Even the links you gave me are light on (or in Japanese). Oh well - all part of the fun I guess.

I may get the opportunity for a business trip to Tokyo later in the year so might try and take the opportunity to do some more research on the race through my customers.

I have thousands of questions but will start with just the one. Is it feasible to plan to fly into (and stay) in Sapporo and drive up for the event either the night before or on the morning of the race?

Thanks again.


Clint said...

It is probably over 5 hours by car from Sapporo. You would be a bit fatigued from the drive.

A better plan is to take a train to Engaru and then take a bus from there to the start. You could also fly into Ohotsuku Monbetsu or Memanbetsu and take a taxi from one of those airports. Ohotsuku is much closer, only 30 minutes away. (jpns)

I drove up there with my mother and father in law. He drove and my MIL and I ran the race. If you have support like that then it is easy. We stayed in a Ryokan close to the start the day before and in a hotel in Kitami the day after. My FIL drove us to the start and then met us at the finish. Many people drive to the start and then take a bus from the finish back to the start to get their cars or they bring along support like my FIL.

Basil said...

Thanks Clint

That's good information to know. I think I need to talk someone from down here into doing the race as well; then we can both share the logistics pain!

Thanks again for your help so far.


Clint said...

I don't think there are a lot of international competitors. I know that Yamada H. and Henrick W. on Dailymile both ran Saroma this year. Yamada H. ran it in Vibram Five Fingers! Their memories of course would be much fresher than mine. I ran it in 2006.

Basil said...

Thanks mate - I have set up a profile on Dailymile and requested to become freinds with them. This is a great start. Thanks again. Basil.

hkrunner said...

Hi, I am looking at the official website of the event 2011. However, they are all in Japanese, any idea how & where I can get the information in English? Pls help!!

Clint said...

hkrunner, I would encourage you to join and look for people there who have run the race or who are planning to run the race. There is no official English site and there are not a lot of foreigners who run the race. There are a few who run it every year though.

There is a little more information here:

But not much. It does have some basic Japanese that would be useful to know.

Read the past comments and do what Basil did, join Dailymile and make some new friends there.

However, if you are having trouble finding people in the know on, comment here again with any questions you might have.

Limited information is included in the calendar entries. For more information, leave a comment. I try to post the deadlines for the races. The place where the race is held is also included. You can see where it is by clicking on the map link.