News - Tue 23rd Aug 2016 - Salomon Mamores VK - Update - Skyline Scotland

Salomon Mamores VK - Update

23rd Aug 2016

With the Skyline Scotland™ weekend of Skyrunning less than one month away, we are providing these important updates and clarifications for participants in the first race of the weekend, the Salomon Mamores VK™ to be held on Friday 16th September. 


Updated Map
The final course map (shown above) has now been published on the website. We do not provide a map to participants in this event, and the course will be well marked and marshalled. 

Nature of the Course
The course is very challenging, even for a VK. The first half is on classically steep and rocky highland trails, and the final quarter is on a steep shoulder and spectacular ridge leading direct to the summit of Na Gruagaichean via an intermittent mountain path. However, the upper-middle section of the route, after leaving the track, strikes directly up the south slope of Na Gruagaichean. There is no path in this very steep section. It is classic grassy Scottish highland mountainside, and it might be wet ground depending on the preceding and prevailing weather. During reconnaissance we have got to know this slope well, and we will be marking the best possible line up the mountain that balances the following requirements:

  • Keeping the total distance at 5km
  • Embracing the quintessential Scottish Munro experience
  • Having a start at the Ice Factor, a course that is largely viewable from the Ice Factor, and a finish on the actual summit, that is also viewable from the Ice Factor.  

In our course design, we have not tried to replicate a European style VK - we have a very Scottish mountain experience that is very much in keeping with the ethos of the other races that make up the Skyline Scotland™ weekend. Yes, it is a tough course, but it is also the stern reality of the Scottish highland terrain!

Salomon Mamores VK (at night)

Last week Race Director Shane Ohly joined Course Planner Gary Tompsett for a nocturnal ascent of the steep and challenging Salomon Mamores VK... but only after completing Curved Ridge and the Aonach Eagach earlier in the same day!

Posted by Salomon Mamores VK on Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Course Closure Time
The course ascent closure time is 19:00 sharp on Friday evening. At this time, the course will be closed, and any participants that have not yet completed the course, will be turned around by our event staff (even if they are just metres from the finish!). This is important for ensuring that everyone is safely off the hill before dark. 

We believe that an average time for the ascent will be approximately 90 minutes, and that a good time will be anything under 60 minutes. 

Earlier Start Times
Bearing in mind the comments above about the nature of the course and course closure time, we have decided to allow participants to start up to 60 minutes earlier than advertised previously i.e. the starts will now be from 15:00 rather than 16:00 on Friday afternoon. To be clear we are not opening the race to additional participants, rather allow participants who already have an entry to start earlier. 

This means we now have a large number of start slots available between 15:00 and 16:00. If you would prefer to start earlier please email us ( and we will allocate earlier start times on a first come, first served basis. 

We hope that by offering these earlier start slots, we can keep the entire event as inclusive as possible, especially for the participants who may have been bumping up against our Course Closure Time.  

The Descent
Remember, the summit of Na Gruagaichean where the VK finishes is only half way… participants will need to descend back to the Ice Factor at Kinlochleven! We have reviewed the descent route options carefully and on balance have decided to direct all the participants back down the ascent route. We think this is best in terms of managing large numbers of people on the mountain, and for allowing as many participants as possible to be cheered on by their fellow runners. Because the route is very steep grass slope in places (you’ll need good studs on your shoes) and exposed to poor weather (you’ll need an extra layer to wear once you have finished), then we clarify again, the kit below. 

Footwear IMPORTANT - Mandatory Clothing and Equipment
We are not changing anything on the Mandatory Clothing and Equipment list already published on the website. However, we would like to emphasise that fell or mountain running shoes with good studs will be IMPORTANT AND BEST in both ascent and descent. Trail running shoes are not suitable and anyone in completely unsuitable shoes (like flat soled road running shoes) will not be allowed start. Please arrive in good time for the start as there will be kit checks in the minutes before your start time. Remember, “No Kit, No Go”.

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