Run under a midnight sun

Last updated: 20-Aug-18

By Elsa Trujillo

For those of you living in the northern hemisphere, the summer solstice is fast approaching. Whether you celebrate or not, on the 21st of June we will experience the longest day and shortest night of the year. From then on, the number of hours of daylight will start to wane.

If you live close to or above the Arctic Circle (66º 33’), from the time of the solstice onwards, you experience the midnight sun. This is a natural phenomenon, where a certain number of your summer days are 24 hours long.

In the most northern parts of Norway and Finland, the midnight sun lasts for months. If you are adventurous enough to pitch your tent in the actual North Pole, your sunny day will last 6 months! But the polar day, as it’s called, actually extends further south of the Arctic Circle. Places like Iceland, above a certain latitude, experience it too, even before that magical day in June.

White nights

If you live at 60º 34’ latitude, your sun drops just below the horizon but doesn’t go away completely. Instead of a normal day or a midnight sun, you get a white night. This is technically a continuous twilight where the sun is not seen directly, but it doesn’t go completely dark.

So, why not add never-ending hours of daylight, insomnia and bad moods to your list of challenges?

Find a race close to the Arctic Circle in the summer months to experience the midnight sun, white nights or just very, very long days …

Find a ‘sunny’ race

On RunUltra we have summer races close to the Polar Circle in Iceland, Finland, Sweden and Norway:

Above latitude 69º

The Tromso Sky Race: 45km in Tromso in Norway.

Above latitude 68º

The Ultra Norway Race: 160km in Delp on the Lofoten Islands in Norway.

The NUTS Pallas: 125km in Enontekio in Finland.

Above latitude 67º

The Swedish Alpine Ultra: 106km in Nikkaluokta-Abisko in Sweden.

Above latitude 65º

The NUTS Karhunkierros: 160km in Ruka, Kuusamo in Finland.

Above latitude 64º

The Laugavegur Ultra Marathon: 55km in Landmannalaugur in Iceland.

Have you run any of these races? Just go to the race listing to leave a review of the race and share your experience with other runners or comment on this article to spark a conversation about days with no nights with your fellow RunUltra members.

Photo credit: Swedish Alpine Ultra

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"why not add never-ending hours of daylight, insomnia and bad moods to your list of challenges?"

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