Ireland > Donegal International Half Mooathan
Sunday, September 27, 2009
The tiny Irish village of Kilmacrenan, nestled among the hilly country
of the northernmost region of the country, plays host to the several
hundred runners and walkers who make their way there each year for the
Donegal International Half Mooathon, a 13.1-mile half marathon event
that's grown in popularity in Ireland in recent years and which will
also feature a full, 26.2-mile marathon and a marathon relay for the
first time ever at the race's 2009 running.
Challenging, filled with hills and run across a combination of paved
surfaces and gravel roads along the Lough Salt Road between Kilmacrenan
and Downings to the north, the race gets its name from one of its main
sponsors, the Donegal Creameries company, and the "cow" theme is in
abundance at the event. From the cow-themed finisher's medal to the
"milking stations" (water stations) along the race route to the
sometimes crazy costumes participants wear for the race, there will be
plenty of reminders what race you're at when you run the Mooathon.
As far as the course itself, the race follows a point-to-point route
that starts in Kilmacrenan and takes runners northward all the way to
the beach near the resort area of Downings, overlooking Sheephaven Bay.
There's plenty of gorgeous natural scenery along the route, from the
green and brown hills of Ireland's northern regions to the lakes and
streams runners pass by along the course. And also plenty of "wildlife"
along the route, including sheep and cows grazing in the rural
farmlands runners trek through during the race.
One thing it's important to know about this race: bring black-and-white
clothing to wear if you're planning on running it, because you could be
disqualified if you show up at the starting line in anything but. In
keeping with the event's unique traditions, this is a requirement for
every runner in the race -- of course, wearing horns, cowbells, black
and white body paint or any other cow-themed apparel is not only
permitted, it's encouraged!
Weather & Climate
Located in the northernmost region of the country, just over 45 minutes
by car from Londonderry in Northern Ireland and just over 10 miles from
the coastline with the Atlantic Ocean, the town of Kilmacrenan
typically experiences weather conditions much like those of nearby
Letterkenny, which is to say chilly and often rainy, misty conditions,
especially in the fall and winter. In September, the town's average
monthly temperatures range between 17°C (62.6°F) and
9°C (48°F), while rainfall totals average just over 8
centimeters for the month.
To reserve your spot in the early fall 2009 running of Donegal's
International Half "Mooathon," register online at MultiSports.ie.
Your Race Story
Ever run in Ireland's annual Donegal International Half Mooathon?
your impressions and read fellow runners' stories
and tips for the event.
Discuss it in the HalfMarathons.Net