MMM 2023 Now Open For Entries

Girls looking at a map

The 2023 Mourne Mountain Marathon is now open for entries. Come and test your navigation and endurance skills at this year’s Mourne Mountain Marathon – 16th & 17th September 2023.

This year we’re delighted to welcome our new partner Mac in a Sac, a local company selling high performance packable outer gear for life on the go. This is following our long-term sponsor Dion Jackson from Jackson Sports, retiring this year.

What Is The Mourne Mountain Marathon?

The Mourne Mountain Marathon is a competitive event for teams of two, who can enter one of four categories, covering between 35km and 55km over two days, on rugged mountain terrain.

Competitors can either run or walk the race but must have a good level of fitness and experience of navigating in the mountains. Teams must make their way to the overnight campsite, carrying all their gear to be self-sufficient for the duration of the race. At the start of each day, teams are presented with a route card listing a number of control markers which are identified by six figure map references.

Teams must visit each control in the prescribed order but may choose their own route between each marker. It is very similar to orienteering and each control is identified by an orange and white flag on a stake. The top class is called the Elite class, which attracts fast mountain runners and has a longer distance and vertical ascent. The B, C and D classes attract runners and hill walkers of different abilities. An average day on the hill ranges from 4 -9 hours.

There is also a one-day score class. Teams have to collect as many controls as possible, in whatever order they think best, within a 6-hour time limit. Each control is worth a certain number of points and if you go over the 6 hour limit you start to lose points.

Which Class Will You Enter?

  • Elite Class – 55km over 2 days. For competent and experienced mountain marathoners, orienteerers and hill runners
  • B Class – 45 km over 2 days. For runners who have successfully completed similar events or done well in our C Class
  • C Class – 35km over 2 days. Runners with some mountain marathon experience or good hill walkers who want to stretch themselves
  • D Class – 35km over 2 days. Hill walkers who are new to this type of event and/or have limited mountain experience or endurance
  • One Day Score Class. No fixed course, collect as many controls as possible, within six hours, in any order

Overnight Campsite

A unique feature of the event is the overnight campsite.  On day one, teams must navigate to the campsite, which is not revealed until they receive their route card at the start of day 1.  It is usually in the middle of nowhere with basic facilities! Teams carry all their food and equipment for the two days in the hills and must share a tent.

Kit is carried by each competitor in their rucksacks. You should see the size of some of the rucksacks carried by the top teams! Small is an understatement, and you wonder how they cram all their stuff into such a small bag. They can’t leave anything behind, as all teams are subject to kit checks at the start to ensure everyone carries the mandatory equipment for the event.

For many, the campsite is the highlight. A friendly and convivial atmosphere awaits you once you have passed the final marker on day one. Sore feet and tired legs are briefly forgotten about once the tent is up, bodies are refuelled and teams are exchanging stories from the day.

Challenging course, amazing mountain experience

A competitive race must mean prizes! At the end of day 2 competitors receive the coveted MMM t-shirt (colour changes every year!) and car sticker plus much needed refreshments. The prize giving rounds off the event, applauding winning categories who receive prizes from our generous sponsors.

MMM 16th & 17th September 2023