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Merrell Whale of Trail

26 July 2024

Treat yourself to a premier race event this year

South Africa’s iconic five day Whale Trail hiking route is offered as a challenge to runners capable of embracing all 53km and 1900m elevation as a TRAIL RUNNING ULTRA, packed with spectacular mountain fynbos, technical rocky ridgelines, sandy beach stretches and endless, mind blowing, beautiful vistas all in one day.

It has become a must-do for those who have already tackled the more conventional runs out there and bragging rights on this one are substantial!

The Merrell Whale of Trail event is the only opportunity each year for a limited number of nature loving athletes to run hard on this trail while treading lightly on the earth.

Just a 3 hour drive from Cape Town or George along the Southern Cape coast, close to Cape Agulhas, the route takes runners on a journey from the base of the Potberg mountain to the beach at Koppie Alleen in CapeNature’s flagship De Hoop Nature Reserve. The first half winds up and along fynbos covered peaks, past the Cape Vulture colony, with spectacular views of the Breede River Valley, and then descends to the enchanting Noetsie Bay, turning west and winding along the rocky shores of the Indian Ocean, with a mix of beach and coasteering trails.

If this is just a few steps too far, there’s now also a 35km route starting and ending in the same glorious places, with a well designed cut through that still gives you a taste of everything that the area has to offer. Perfect for those not quite ready for an ultra distance but wanting to be a part of the incredible race atmosphere.


26 – 28 July 2024


De Hoop Collection on De Hoop Nature Reserve.


53 km




  • Permit, entry and unique opportunity to run this trail
  • CapeNature fee for De Hoop Reserve and the trail
  • Paramedic support with 4×4 vehicles (excludes helicopter evacuation, or any hospitalization transport, which will be at the athlete’s cost)
  • Transfers to and from race village to start and finish points
  • Four well stocked and staffed water tables on the route
  • Friday night briefing dinner
  • Hot meal at finish
  • Saturday night prize giving dinner
  • Drop bag and complimentary items
  • Transfer of drop bag to finish
  • Complimentary leg massage at finish
  • Finisher’s medal


  • Accommodation
  • Drinks at dinners
  • Personal race nutrition
Imagery Credit to Peter Kirk Media