About Meråker Mountain Challenge
This page covers some of the background and history for the MMC, as well as information about how the MMC relates to UTMB (Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc) and ITRA (International Trail Running Association). If you don't find what you seek here, you can try our FAQ page for answers to some frequently asked questions.
The inaugural year for the Meråker Mountain Challenge was 2012. Since then, this iconic event has taken place every year - even during the covid-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021. MMC is truly a classic among terrain ultras in Norway.
MMC 70K hosted the Norwegian ultra-trail championship in 2018.
The driving force behind MMC has been Hallgeir Martin Lundemo. Hallgeir is well known both in the local community and on the Norwegian national scene. He has been the landlord of Petter Northug jr., and participated in a Norwegian reality show called "72 degrees north".
In 2014 he ran across all mountains in Meråker above 900 masl - a journey of more than 300 km, with +15000 meters of elevation! He completed the distance in 70 hours with no sleep except for a few moments of micro sleep along the way. He has also organized the '26 peaks extremity race' on a few occations - a race across the 26 peaks in Meråker above 1000 masl. See 'Lundemo specials' for more info.
The MMC has been a subsidiary of 'Meråker til Topps' - a non-profit foundation with a focus on making the Meråker wilderness accessible and attractive to the Meråker residents and visitor alike.
MMC cooperates with a variety of local businesses, organizations, private persons and govermental bodies. Among these are the municipality of Meråker, the sports organization Varden IL and many of the local residents of Meråker.
Most important for the repeated organization of the MMC events are the work done by the volunteers. Many hearty thanks to all helping hands and supportive friends of the MMC!
MMC and UTMB
- If you're not familiar with the Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc, or UTMB, you can read up on our 'About UTMB' page.
If you look at the headers for the MMC 21K, 42K, 70K and 100K distances, you see that they have associated UTMB Distance Categories like "UTMB 20K", "UTMB 50K", and "UTMB 100K". This is because the MMC 20K, 42K, 70K and 100K distances are approved and classified by UTMB as UTMB Index races.
Participants who finish one of these races will receive a UTMB Performance Index in the category of the race. The Performance Index is used in a similar way as the former ‘qualifying points’ to show a runner’s experience at different distances, and can be used to enter the UTMB World Series Events and, combined with Running Stones, to enter the UTMB Finals.
For many ultra-trail runners, the UTMB and sibling races represent the holy grail of ultra-trail running. If it is on your bucket list to do one of the UTMB races, the MMC will contribute to give you a valid UTMB performance index. In addition you will need UTMB running stones, which you can gather in any of the UTMB World Series events.
MMC and ITRA
- If you are unfamiliar with the International Trail Running Association, please consult our 'About ITRA' page.
All MMC distances from 21K and up are approved by ITRA and part of the ITRA race calender. For each distance ITRA has calculated and awarded the following:
- ITRA points: 1 for the 21K, 2 for the 42K, 3 for the 70K and 4 for the 100K
- Mountain points: 5 for the 21K, 42K and 100K, and 7 for the 70K
- Finisher level: 107 for the 21K, 295 for the 42K, 263 for the 70K and 352 for the 100K
Read more about what these numbers really mean on the About ITRA page.
In 2023 the MMC 21K, 42K, 70K and 100K races are part of the ITRA National League. As of January 2023, MMC is one of nine events that are part of the Norwegian National League. We expect that more will be approved as the year progresses. Participation in one of these four MMC races will contribute to the runners' final score in this years National League. Read more about the rules on the About ITRA page.