An announcement regarding the UTMF/STY race courses
March 24, 2014
Ultra-Trail Mt Fuji Race Committee
We are finally able to officially announce the race courses for the 3rd edition of the Ultra-Trail Mt Fuji (UTMF) and Shizuoka to Yamanashi (STY). As the race director and head of the UTMF Race Committee, I would also like to take this time to explain the reasons for the long delays in getting this information out to you.
This year’s race was to run in a counter-clockwise direction using the same course as last year. However, in midst of our preparations, a number of issues came up requiring us to make significant changes to the course. This year’s race will now run in a clockwise direction (same as the 1st edition of the UTMF). Here are the reasons.
Certain divisions within the government of Shizuoka Prefecture asked us not to use the trails going through the “Fujisan Shizen Kyuyourin” (Mt. Fuji Recreation Forest) this year citing environmental concerns. In order to address these concerns, the UTMF Race Committee prepared detailed action plans and precautionary measures that would be put in place to minimize the impact to the environment. Unfortunately, they did not agree to these measures. As we are no longer able to use the trails within the Fujisan Shizen Kyuyourin, the course between MIZUGATSUKA and TAROBO has been re-routed to run along the “Fujisan Skyline” road.
While permission was obtained to utilize the “Fujisan Skyline” road, there were concerns regarding the impact on traffic. After multiple meetings with the police, an agreement was finally reached allowing the race to use the Fujisan Skyline road during nighttime hours where the impact on traffic would be minimal. In order to achieve this however, the race course had to be completely re-routed to run in a clockwise direction.
We realize that the delay in the announcement of the race course has caused much concern. However, this time was needed in order for us to work through some very tough issues to ensure that we can continue with the race in the future. We are moving forward and working hard in preparation for this year’s race and greatly appreciate your patience and kind understanding.