Hidden Oasis Ultra

Sport & Leisure

Hidden in the hills.

Register for the race here.

An ultra-marathon brings racers to the rolling hills, with vast scenery, forested areas, and an array of landscape to view. Hidden Oasis Ultra is a 50-kilometre trek through lodgepole pine and aspen forest throughout Elkwater in Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park.

Event organizer Rita Pasiciel has traveled the world and continues to fly to races hosted hundreds of kilometres away. After she moved to Medicine Hat seven years ago, she planned and hosted Hidden Oasis Ultra with a small team of people that launched in 2022.

“Cypress Hills is as beautiful as any other place in the world. And the ultra-marathon showcases and introduces people to this hidden oasis we have in our corner,” says Pasiciel. 

Surrounded by flat prairie land, when driving into Elkwater people are suddenly immersed by rolling hills and green forest. It’s a place locals often refer to as “an oasis in the prairies”.

Hidden Oasis is the first ultra race hosted in this small part of the world, where experienced runners from British Columbia to Ontario have run the challenging and nature-filled marathon.

Wooden medals made of local trees and carved locally are given to those who quickly cross the finish line, a more natural, sustainable keepsake sourced from the place that’s home to the experience.

“This race has to be on your list. It’s a fun event, and it happens to be a race at the same time,” says Pasiciel. 

Justyna Kolodziej Gavrylov joined Hidden Oasis for the first time in 2023. Impressed by the food stations, amount of washrooms along the 50-kilometre trail, and feeling of being welcomed by organizers, volunteers, and racers, this runner is ready to return in 2024.

“You have everything — the open space on Horseshoe Canyon and a nice breeze with sunshine. Then you go into the forested area where it’s shaded. The landscape and scenic change is massively different throughout the whole race,” says Kolodziej Gavrylov, who moved to Medicine Hat in 2021. 

She says there’s a wholesome, local energy, with a main focus of coming together, running outdoors, and being in nature. It brings people through all the best spots in Elkwater.

Once the finish line is crossed, food and beverages from Medicine Hat Brewing Company await the racers, during the socializer for them to celebrate their accomplishments throughout the marathon, meet other runners who travel for events just like this, and to carry the day into the evening. 

Event Date: June 8, 2024

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