8 truly Napier experiences on your Patat Fest run & cycle
Athletes: You’re prepped and ready for the 2019 Napier Wine & Patat Festival races. (Remember, we’ve got trail runs, road races and mountain bike races).
But even if you’re not quite ready for the events (if you ran out of time to complete your training), don’t worry. While taking on some of our sporting events, there are a number of moments that will take your mind off any tired legs, and will undoubtedly make YOUR RACE unique.
Sights and sounds you’ll see during your race
Here are our favourites to keep you focused on our country landscapes.
1. The best views come after the hardest climb
And that’s also true for your Napier Wine & Patat Festival races. You’ll be doing some climbing during your trail running, road racing and mountain biking. But the views at the end of the climb make it MORE than worthwhile.
2. King Proteas – of every size (and even colour)
South Africa’s national flower, the King Protea (Protea cynaroides), is a spectacular sight on the Napier mountains. Right now, you’ll see them covering much of the Fynbos landscapes (especially on your trail run and on the 21km and 10km road race). Look out for the different sizes, and even the different colours.
3. Fields of Erica
In particular, you can’t miss the landscapes of Erica coccinea, lighting up the Fynbos in yellow. You’ll also see Erica sessiliflora, and a few early-blooming Erica caffra. (PS. These mountains are also home to Erica recurvata – thought to be extinct, but found in 2007. It’s known ONLY from this one population).
4. A race above the clouds
Well, we can’t guarantee you’ll be above the clouds during your race. But it’s a common occurrence while running and cycling on the Napier mountains. And it makes for some wonderful sights of both the natural Fynbos, and the green agricultural lands below the clouds.
5. The wildlife – both in the Fynbos and the agricultural lands
Look out for many special species, like the Vulnerable Blue Crane (the Overberg is home to many of South Africa’s national birds). Some species you may not see during your race include porcupine. But chances are you’ll see loads of signs of these and other animals that live here. The small mammals here are pretty and special – so keep your eyes peeled.
6. The stone walls – packed in past centuries
In fact, these stone walls right on top of the mountain were placed there in the 19th century. Back then, the farmers here used them to keep their livestock on their property (today, you won’t find livestock that high up on the mountain sides).
8. That darn hill
OK, so this is not a pretty sight. In fact, it’s a pretty daunting one. It’s that final climb up to the Agullhas School of Skills. But it’s a sure sign you’re NEARLY there. “Vasbyt” – knowing that the end, including a hearty meal, and creative market stalls are in sight.
7. The crowds, welcoming you home
The town gets involved in the Wine & Patat Festival. And many locals (and visitors) line the streets to welcome athletes home after the testing race. We pride ourselves on a community that enjoys getting involved in this truly-Napier event.
If you’ve not entered yet, then here are your options:
Trail runs: 18km, 14km and 8km fun run/hike
Road races: 21km and 10km
MTB races: 55km, 45km, 30km and 15km
FOLLOW THE ACTION
Let us know if you have any questions.