The vertical kilometer ascent to the summit of the Great Balkhan Range, Mt. Arlan, in Balkan velayat is this year’s second round of Turkmenistan Skyrunning Cup series. The races are organized by the mountain climbing clubs, Agama and Mert, under the auspices of the State Sport Committee of Turkmenistan.
The 6-kilometer serpentine trail wended its way against the scenic backdrop. The elevation difference between the base and the summit of the mountain was over 850 meters. The event finished in a juniper forest at the height of 1,800 meters above sea level. Although the climbers climbed the steep ascent on the northern slope, they had to withstand a high temperature of above 30° C in some parts of the route.
Yazgeldi Odeniyazov from the city of Balkanabat finished first in the race in 48.5 minutes. It was he, who had won this year’s first round of Cup series, ascending Mt. Dushakerikdag.
The team from Ashgabat took second and third places. Arslan Annamamedov, who came second, was two minutes behind the winner. Third place went to Alekper Ahmedov, last year’s Cup winner.
The race was hotly contested in the women’s group too. The team from the city of Balkanabat was a second-time winner. Gozel Ataeva, the favorite of the competition, was the first to finish the race in 1 hour 18 minutes. Alina Panova and Najiya Kostova, members of the team from the capital took second and third places.
The third round of Turkmenistan Skyrunning Cup series will be held along the trails on Mts. Harlasang and Markou (the Kopetdag), and the capital’s Health Footpath.
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