In full: This was my first marathon (50th birthday present from my marathon running mate!!)and I absolutely loved it. The atmosphere of the whole weekend was brilliant, facilities were great including a welcome hot shower before legging it to airport for our flight home. The post race meal had a choice of risotto, chicken or STOVIES which were fab !! The race was well organised with a coach trip to the start along the loch and bagpipes to send you on your way ...emotional. The course threw up a couple of unexpected hills and undulations but the scenery and the support from locals along the way just kept me going and the welcome coming back into Inverness brought a tear to my eye ..or maybe it was the emotion of completing my first marathon but whatever it was a hugely positive experience all round. Date of review: October 5, 2013
In short: My favourite marathon to date. In full: Out of this world scenery, clockwork organisation with great aid stations, considerate finish area and brilliant technical t-shirt and medal. A race that seems to be organised first and foremost by people that know what it is like to run a marathon. The journey to the start was long but well managed and it was worth every second to start a marathon with the most amazing view and sound of pipers - spine tingling! We had been warned about 'the hill' and I was mentally and physically ready for it. What I was less ready for is how undulating the rest of the course was. If like me you are nervous about going off too quickly it is difficult to take advantage of the downhill profile, making it quite a tough run. That said, I loved every single second of it!! Chatted to more runners than ever before and the support in Inverness was quite overwhelming after 25 quiet miles.
This was my fourth marathon and despite the course being quite challenging, I still managed a PB and so don't be scared by the hills (was vey glad I trained for them though).
Great location for a weekend away and I can't recommend this race highly enough. It is a guaranteed memory maker! Date of review: October 3, 2013
In short: Dores Hill worries ? just 61 metres incline over 3 miles.....! In full: A fabulous race, unforgettable scenery, warm welcoming organisors, and pretty good food before ( pasta party) and afterwards food voucher is a welcome treat !
The whole city of inverness embraces the race, the atmosphere is brilliant without being intimidating.
The drinks stations are positioned just right on the route. The only heart stopping moments are the journey to the start....make sure you `go` before you get on the coach to the start...its a full HOUR before you disembark. The organisors did a great job, however the masses of runners formed 2 queues to the toilets, and one of them was a hot drinks station, so be careful not to join the wrong one ! - A simple laminated map of the start area could be on the bus to hand around...that way everyone could see where they needed to head to ( most people just jumped into the heather/trees when they saw the queue anyway !
And now THAT hill...its not steep, its just long and a shock to the legs after effectively a 17 mile largely down hill run ( A few hills within that 17 miles...but hey..its Scotland !!!) I have learned as a trail runner that runners dont like hills..especially marathon runners but dont let this hill put you off...actually there is another little gradient increase at 23 miles which hurts a lot more ! I measured Dores from mile 17-20 and its only 61 metres incline over the 3 miles...get it done and then enjoy the Baxters soup. `Happy Trails` Date of review: October 3, 2013
In short: A great race, brilliant scenery, great organisation, tough hills!! In full: This was my first marathon. Do not underestimate the course, although the profile looks downhill, there are rolling hills throughout the course. Dores Hill at 18 miles is tough. The hill itself isn't particularly steep but its a long hill and after 18 miles it really took its toll on me. The atmosphere throughout the run was amazing with good banter between runners and great support from the pockets of people along the way. Bigger crowds as you come into Inverness with fabulous support at the finish. A great medal, t-shirt, goody bag and food. Although I've never felt so much pain whilst running before (cramp at Dores Hill) it has not put me off entering next year where I plan to tame the monster that is Dores Hill. This race should be on everyone's to do list!! Date of review: October 2, 2013
In short: A gorgeous but tough course that requires hill training regardless of the apparent downhill profile .... In full: The course is challenging from start to finish, extremely undulating with some steep down hills and lots of up hills along the way. I did PB by almost 3 mins on the day but I had not hill trained, I really wish I had run some hills in my programme and I could have easily achieved the sub 3.30 I was chasing! Gorgeous views, brilliant organisation and my entry is already in for next year! Well done the organisers for getting it all so right! :) Date of review: October 2, 2013
In short: My favourite! In full: Went back to do this for the 5th time and have already signed up for next year :) Brilliant organisation! Lovely scenery! Friendly Marshall's! The whole thing from start to finish is superb :) Date of review: October 2, 2013
In short: Great course, excellent organisation would definitely do it again! In full: The course is mainly flat with a very high potential of a PB. The organisers have got it spot on. The weather was amazing today and it was great seeing so many spectators and supporters along the route. Will definitely be back next year! Date of review: September 29, 2013
In short: Stunning scenery, great organisation and a friendly feel In full: A well organised race run with the expertise of big city major marathons with out the crowds and hassle. A friendly feel ideal for beginners with the highlight being the stunning surroundings on a fast undulating course. Plenty of fuel stations, great medal, t shirt and after race food. The highlight was seeing some truly inspirational people pushing their body and mind to the limit, well done Loch Ness for a cracking event. Date of review: September 29, 2013
In short: Awesome scenery, amazing organisation! In full: This is a race everyone should do once! You catch a bus with 4000 other runners to get dropped off at the top of a hill above the Loch. Then you have stunning scenery and then once the endless hill finises at mile 20 you are downhill all the way to Inverness to be cheered and encouraged home by the very friendly locals. Date of review: September 29, 2013