This event is cancelled

Kokoda Ultra Marathon

Kokoda Track, Papua New Guinea
13 Jul, 2021 (Tue)
Event size: 0 - 99 participants

Trail running

96 km

About the event

A once in a life time opportunity for experience endurance runners, adventurers, trekkers to push their physical and mental limits and race across Kokoda.

Pay your respects and follow in the footsteps of fallen soldiers as you run through pristine jungle, climb mountains and cross the rivers of the Kokoda Track.

Races offered by this event

Kokoda Ultra Marathon

13 Jul, 2021 (Tue)
Trail running - Stage race
96 km
6500 m Elevation gain
Welcome to PNG! Now it’s real! Get settled in to your accommodation and then come and join us for a welcome dinner and drinks…but not too many! You have a big few days ahead! > Overnight stay in Port Moresby, Gateway Hotel

Today we leave Port Moresby and head to Kokoda. We’ll have our pre-race briefing and gear check and in the afternoon we will hold our memorial service on the Kokoda Battlefield and inspect the battlefields and war museum > Overnight at Kokoda Village Campsite

DISTANCE: 30.5 km

5.30am: Early morning breakfast and pre-race briefing
6.15am: Race start

Firstly we head to Kovello and then onto Hoi. We will begin our climb over the awesome Owen Stanley Range to Deniki, up to the Isurava village and then onto the Isurava Memorial. Isurava was the scene of a 4-day battle that has been described as the battle that saved Australia. There is a beautiful memorial here with the four Granite pillars inscribed with the words Courage, Endurance, Mateship and Sacrifice. We then continue our journey to Alola trek down to Eora Creek and up to Templeton’s > Camping overnight at Templeton’s Campsite


Today we cross over the highest point of the Kokoda Track, Mt Bellamy at 2190m. We have a pretty hard start to the day with a steep climb up to the Kokoda Gap. The Kokoda Gap was the area that Generals Macarthur and Blamey wanted to blow up and make it our own Thermopylae with our troops playing the 300 Spartans part. The down side to the plan is that the Gap is 12 km wide, and all the Spartans died! After climbing over the highest point of the track we make our way through the Moss Forest and an Ancient Arctic Beech Forest. We then descend down to Naduri before commencing a steep difficult climb up to Efogi 2 before an easy down into the main Village of Efogi.

We then head up to Brigade Hill. Brigade Hill and Mission Ridge was the scene of a bloody and ferocious battle during the 6-8 September 1942. 101 Australian Soldiers were killed in these battles. From Brigade Hill we have a long and tiring descent down to Menari before commencing our climb up to the Menari Gap and the steep descent down the other side of “the wall”. At the bottom of “the wall” is a short flat section before we cross the Brown River before spending a couple of hours ploughing through the thick sticky mud of the Naoro swamps. After the swamps we commence our climb up the “11 false peaks” of the Maguli Range to Naoro Villge > Camping overnight at Naoro Village

DISTANCE: 23.5km

We depart Naoro and continue our climb before reaching the highest point of this section of the track. We now have a long descent down to Ofi Creek. From Ofi Creek we have a hard and tiring climb up Iorabaiwa Ridge, followed by a steep descent down Iorabaiwa Ridge and begin our 22 river crossings of the beautiful and spectacular Ua Ule Creek area. We then climb up Imita Ridge, which was the Australians last and final stand, there was to be no further withdrawal from this area. We then descend down the area known as the Golden Stairs before crossing the Goldie River where we now have a short but steep climb up to Owers Corner. It is a great feeling as we cross under the arches and know that we have just completed walking in the footsteps of heroes across the Kokoda Track! We depart Owers’ Corner for Port Moresby returning to the Hotel for a welcome shower and some well earned celebrations! > Overnight in Port Moresby, Gateway Hotel.

Depart Port Moresby for home…time to rest your legs and say goodbye to PNG, a place that will stay in your memory for a lifetime. Soak up that feeling of achievement, endurance and smashing your goal…it’s well deserved! Time to plan your next adventure??!
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Interview: Kokoda Ultra Marathon in Papua New Guinea

02 Mar, 2017 (Thu)

Credit : Wayne Wetherall & Anthony Thompson Hello, on July 26th 2017, you’ll be organizing the Kokoda Ultra Marathon. Can you tell us where it is located? The Kokoda Ultra Marathon will race across the spine of the Owen Stanley Ranges in PNG from the Village of Kokoda in the ORO Province to Owers Corner near Port Moresby. 96km of the most remote and spectacular running tracks on the planet. How old is the race and why was it created in the first place? The Kokoda Trail is more than 100 years old with a spellbinding connection to the legendary actions of our Australian Diggers more than 75 years ago. The race has been created to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Kokoda Trail Campaign. The courage, endurance, mateship and sacrifice of our Diggers in repelling a voracious enemy hell bent on taking our land and changing our way of life needs to be told to a new generation of Australians. §staticmap(77344,5,800,200) What kind of route have you set up for the runners? How would you describe it? The Kokoda Ultra Marathon route is across the original wartime Kokoda Track. We follow in the footsteps of heroes as we ascend more than 6000m and descend more than 6500m over rough, brutal and unforgiving terrain. The track crosses more than 35 rivers, some that we have to wade through some just single logs suspended above gushing rivers. Treacherous descents, energy sapping mud and a myriad of slippery tree roots and rocks. Nature has created the ultimate adventure track with breathtaking scenery and spirit sapping conditions. The event spans across two days. What is the program? The Kokoda Ultra Marathon is a two-day, three night stage race. The race commences early from Kokoda on the 27th July with a 30.5km run to the Village of Templeton’s Crossing. Day two will see the competitors take on more than 42 km before making camp at the Village of Naoro. The last day of the race is a relative sprint to the finish as the competitors take on the last backbreaking 23.5kms. Each night all the competitors will share the group meals prepared by the camp cooks. This is more than a race it’s about sharing an experience with like-minded individuals and feeling the spirit of the diggers that went before us. Credit : Wayne Wetherall & Anthony Thompson How many runners do you expect on Wednesday morning? What type of runners do you plan to attract? The race will comprise a small group of 22 competitors who have qualified for this event through other ultra marathon events or who have previously tackled Kokoda. We only want competitors that are prepared to compete in this event in the Spirit of the Diggers with the sole purpose of honoring the Legacy of our Diggers. At that time of the year, what kind of weather can we expect? The race is in the drier time of year with less rain and humidity, however the weather can turn quickly and engulf the competitors in a torrent of rain. This is one of great unknowns of running through near virgin tropical jungle…the weather is subject to the whims of the gods. Have you planned festivities around the event? Prior to the race commencing all competitors, staff and guides will participate in a moving remembrance ceremony on the battlefields of Kokoda. One of the entry criterias is all competitors must complete a written history questionnaire on Kokoda. The race finished, what advice would you give a runner who has never been to Papua New Guinea before? Expect the unexpected. Go with no preconceived perceptions; let the magic and warmth of the PNG people, their culture and spectacular scenery empower you. Take the time to read about the Kokoda Trail war campaign and appreciate the opportunities our Diggers sacrificed for us. In a single sentence, what would you tell the readers of ahotu Marathons to make them register for the Kokoda Ultra Marathon? Do you want to do something significant? Do you want to be empowered? Do you want a life changing experience? Do you want to race in the footsteps of heroes? Do you want to race through one of earth’s last great frontiers? Do you want to be a pioneer and compete in one of the world’s great adventures? Interview with Wayne Wetherall, Race director AKA “Bosso” of Kokoda Spirit and Kokoda Ultra Marathon. Wayne has personally completed more than 70 Kokoda treks, including a triple Kokoda crossing, a fast two-day trek and three Kokoda Coast to Coast challenges.
Ahotu event page:
3 min read