Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Member of the Federal Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, the inaugural Adventure HQ’s GCC Hiking Championship was held in Ras Al Khaimah on Saturday 26 March 2016.
Comprising six teams of 11 athletes from across the UAE, KSA, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and Kuwait, the Hiking Championship tested participants’ fitness levels as they made their way through the rough terrains of Jebel Jais, reaching heights over 1,000 meters.
The teams met the day before the competition where they were briefed on the day ahead and had the chance to meet their fellow athletes at a designated base camp by Wadi Galila Dam. Members of the public were also invited to take part in a fun day of music, traditional food, and folk dances and were also offered the opportunity to enjoy climbing, camping and cycling competitions.
The strenuous but rewarding hike finished at the top of Jebel Jais Mountain – the official finish line for the competition – where the United Arab Emirates team completed the competition in just 01:58:00 minutes. The winning team was shortly followed by Omani and Saudi Hikers who finished in 02:08:00 and 02:20:00 minutes respectively.
Haitham Mattar, CEO, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority said: “Ras Al Khaimah provides a beautiful backdrop for hosting a wide range of great outdoor activities. One of our goals for 2016 and beyond is to host a variety of exhilarating outdoor events, with a great deal of focus on sporting events in particular. The Hiking challenge is a great example of this. It is open to residents and visitors alike, and further positions Ras Al Khaimah as the ultimate outdoor destination.”
Yasser Sharaf, President & Founder of Sharaf HQ Investment, the founders of Adventure HQ said, “As an Emirati company, we are delighted to hold this GCC initiative in Ras Al Khaimah – it brings our community together and inspires people to stay healthy and discover the great outdoors in a beautiful setting. The competing teams are great role models of how our passion can bring nations together as one, and challenge ourselves collectively to reach great heights. The challenging route gave the athletes the opportunity to test their stamina and strength as they enjoyed a beautiful route through the UAE’s tallest mountain, Jebel Jais”.
Following the success of this year’s Hiking Championship, Adventure HQ plan to make the championship an annual event.
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