Exciting MegaFest trail run at Naracoorte Caves

Runners: This year's Naracoorte MegaFest organisers have designed new tracks for its World Heritage Trail Run participants with the event to take place in November at the world-famous Naracoorte Caves once again.
Runners: This year's Naracoorte MegaFest organisers have designed new tracks for its World Heritage Trail Run participants with the event to take place in November at the world-famous Naracoorte Caves once again.

Keen runners from far and wide will have the chance to participate in the exciting Naracoorte MegaFest World Heritage Trail Run for the second year in a row.

The run will be on Sunday, November 22, at the World Heritage-listed Naracoorte Caves once again with the event being held to celebrate the fossils within the famous caves.

The inaugural event took place last year with the Naracoorte World Heritage Festival when crowds marked 50 years since the discovery of the fossil beds at the caves and 25 years since the caves were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

Organisers have re-invented the event this year to suit the COVID-19 social-distancing restrictions, with there being a firmer focus on the run, but organisers hope the MegaFest will return to its original format in future years.

There will be a similar set of courses to last year's Trail Run, with organisers designing the variety of tracks to suit all the participants.

Runners will be able to choose from four different tracks in the 23km Mega Fauna Run, 15km Stoney Point Run, 5km Dippy Run and the 1km Fossil Dash.

Organisers Charlie Legoe and Matt Drew explained what the event will also look to promote outside the history of the caves and why they originally decided to organise the run in town.

"We'll be promoting health and well-being - over the last couple of years there has been an increase in interest in these trail runs and we have just added one to the map," Mr Legoe said.

Mr Drew said that organisers have noted that the trail run phenomenon is an ever-growing community with people all over the nation competing in more trail run events every year.

"It's just becoming a bit more of an exercise pastime," Mr Drew said. "We figured that since we are in a world heritage area, we should hold one, too."

Organisers also stressed that participants can choose to run or powerwalk through the course, but special prizes and medallions will be presented to those who cross the finish line first.

The course has been designed to allow runners to appreciate the bushland and pine forest trails, the kangaroosn and other native wildlife, pass sheep farms, vineyards, as well as experience the unique limestone formations of the caves.

The run will include new sections, with organisers ensuring that the event is safe for all involved, introducing staggered starts for runners as one of the procedures.

Special caves' tours will be offered to participants, as they will be able to book a tour of the Victoria Fossil Cave or Alexandra Cave and experience a free tour of the Stick Tomato Cave and Wonambi Fossil Centre.

Promotional T-shirts will be available for runners, and the Naracoorte Lucindale Council and the Naracoorte Lucindale Business and Tourism Association are again supporting the event. More sponsors will be revealed soon.

To register for the run and to find out more information visit www.megafest.com.au and Facebook page www.facebook.com/NaracoorteMegaFest/