Underberg – Trail runners and hikers took full advantage of magnificent weather conditions on the weekend during the two-stage Giant’s Cup trail run and the new Hiking Giants event for hikers.

The events use the fabled Giant’s Cup hiking trails and started at the Premier Resort Sani Pass on Friday morning, taking the participants on a 32km route that ended at Castleburn Farm on the Drak Gardens Road. The second stage covered 30km from Castleburn to the Bushman’s Nek Hotel.

The event also offers a short course option on both days and now caters for hikers as well as trail runners.

The intimate event sees runners and hikers overnighting in hotels along the way and lends itself to camaraderie and getting to know the other entrants.

The elite competitors took full advantage of the clear sunny weather and trails in pristine conditions after the recent Ultra-Trail® Drakensberg Festival of Trail Running to post fast times.

The men’s competition was won by Travis Green, with Anri Visser winning the women’s equivalent.

The beneficiary of the Giants Cup and Hiking Giants is the Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife branch based at the Cobham Nature Reserve. R500 per hiker was donated to this organisation and the work it does dealing with environmental challenges facing the Maloti Drakensberg Park.

These include alien vegetation, maintenance of the trails, funding of vital equipment for EKZNW staff and assistance with monitoring of critically endangered species such as the Bearded Vulture.

More information can be found at www.thegiantscup.co.za