The Buffalo Stampede is an Trail Running Ultra Marathon held every year in Bright, Victoria.
The run is 75km with over 4654m in climbing it is one of Australia's toughest races. Beginning before sunrise to maximise the amount of daylight for the athletes, they must run in the pitch dark through the tricky terrain around Mystic forest before heading up the epic Big Walking trail to Mount Buffalo. After the 42km Marathon distance the athletes are up an altitude of around 1500m and the terrain becomes even trickier with tight tunnels and rock formations to scramble through, under and over. But this is only Halfway!
Fatigue begins to settle in and after hours and hours of physical effort, each trail runner now faces the tough mental challenge to descend the mountain and make the crucial cut off times at each checkpoint. Another 2 monster hill climbs up and over Clearspot and Mystic Hill are required before the finish in Bright.
Sam McCutcheon lead from start to finish in a time of 8hrs 22 minutes, while Christie Hopkins overtook Katherine Mckean to win in a time of 11hrs 29 min.
It was one of the more inspiring events I've photographed, a long day out shooting in the dark, rain and cold before relaxing in the sun at the finish.