Ireland > Bay Run Half Marathon
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Spectacular views of the nearby Caha Mountains combine with the blue
waters of southwest Ireland's Bantry Bay to form the backdrop for the
annual Bay Run Half Marathon, a point-to-point race that saw just under
2,000 runners cross the finish line at its spring 2008 running. With a
course that takes participants from the village of Glengarriff
overlooking the bay's northern shore to Bantry along its southern side,
this race features much of the magnificent scenery for which this part
of the country is known -- high mountain ridges off in the distance,
mountain streams cascading down to the lower elevations, and hilly
green pastures, lakes, ponds and forests in between.
Formerly known as the West Cork Run, the Bay Run Half starts runners
off in the village of Glengarriff, which is perhaps most famous for
Garnish Island, a small island located just off the shore from
Glengarriff in Bantry Bay that is home to a world-famous collection of
plants, horticulture and Italian gardens. From the starting line in the
village, runners head out along the main N71 highway towards Kenmare,
though they take a quick detour through the Glengarriff Wood National
Nature Reserve in the race's first mile.
Filled with some of Ireland's largest and oldest oak trees (some are
more than 200 years old), the reserve features a nearly half-mile
stretch of road called "The Avenue" that those running the race will
traverse on their way through the reserve and then re-join the N71 for
the rest of the course toward the village of Kenmare. Runners stay on
this stretch of highway for the next 2 to 3 miles until reaching the
third mile marker, which begins perhaps the race's toughest hill.
The third mile begins a roughly mile-long uphill stretch that will no
doubt challenge even the hardiest of runners, followed by a stretch
that's much flatter, though it does have a slight incline. As runners
make their way through miles 4 and 5, they enter the portion of the
course that organizers say is its most scenic, as they run through the
village of Ardnatrush with views of the azure blue Bantry Bay over
The course remains at near sea level for the next couple of miles as
runners continue their way around the eastern shoreline of the bay,
through the town of Ballylickey and past gorgeous green golf courses
toward the home stretch of the race, which features a flat stretch and
a downhill toward the finish line in the village of Bantry, in Wolf
Weather & Climate
Located among the lush green pastures, mountains and lakes of southwest
Ireland's County Cork, the villages of Glengarriff and Bantry typically
experience relatively milder, warmer weather than the country's
northern regions, with often heavier rainfall and humidity than the
country's eastern side, thanks to its proximity to the breezes sweeping
in from the Atlantic Ocean. In May, monthly temperatures in Glengarriff
average around 15°C (59°F).
€50 for runners and walkers
To reserve your place in the spring 2009 running of the
Glengarriff-to-Bantry Bay Run Half Marathon, register online at the event website
or print out and mail in this downloadable entry form.
Your Race Story
Ever run in Ireland's annual Bay Run Half Marathon?
your impressions and read fellow runners' stories
and tips for the event.
Discuss it in the HalfMarathons.Net