Reasons why I’m about to run my 3rd RTA tour!
Reviewed by: Dessa
I highly recommend a RTA trip. I knew I really enjoyed my first two tours, but it was after I did a tour with another organization that made me realize things that I hadn’t initially about RTA, but things they do that really matter to me: RTA is inclusive, caters to ALL runners in the group – no matter their age, talent, or speed. The guides create a supportive community of runners during the tour while at the same time they are flexible to adjust to each individuals needs in terms of distance, stamina, or injuries along the way. RTA tours are organized, scheduled, the guides are certified, they keep their clients safe, don’t put them at risk, and they do a great job communicating at night with what to expect the next day; all things that make a tour top-notch.
When I first called Run the Alps to see what would be a good adventure for my family (half who trail run and half who hike) they suggested we explore the Bernese Oberland area of Switzerland. We were so pleased with that recommendation and have found ourselves back there since our initial trip. The self-guided materials that RTA provided us were complete and gave us everything we needed to navigate the area. The accommodations they booked for us were wonderful. For two days we were able to meet up with a RTA group who was on tour in the same area, since my son wanted to experience a guided trip. With that group, we participated in the Eiger Trail series of races in Grindelwald. A couple years later I signed up for the CCC tour with Giles as my guide and it was an incredible experience. Giles could answer any question I had about mountains, villages, terrain and it was a beautiful week especially starting and ending in Chamonix, France and running through Italy and Switzerland.
If possible, sign up for a race while you are on your tour. It's as magical as you've heard, with shop owners on their roofs ringing cowbells for the racers and spectators all over the race course cheering you on. I did one of the Eiger Trail races in Switzerland and then one of the races in the Chamonix Marathon series and they are both some of the most memorable races I've ever participated in.
Our highlight of the Bernese Oberland tour was the Tanzbodeli plateau on the way up to the Obersteinberg Hut and staying at the hut overnight. As we hiked up, we spotted the helicopter with pallets of supplies, most likely bringing in our food. We passed cows where our cream came from for breakfast the next morning. There are no roads to the hut, and therefore running to this remote hut was memorable. The highlight of the CCC (Courmayeur, Champex-Lac, Chamonix) tour was running half of the TMB trail and climbing some incredible mountain passes. Plus the opportunity to run in three countries (Italy - Switzerland - France) was spectacular.