The 2017 edition of the Mont Blanc 80K—which is held annually in Chamonix, France—took place on June 23. Each year, thousands of runners head to Chamonix for the events of the Mont Blanc Marathon. The 80 kilometer (50-mile) race is the longest and toughest of the weekend’s events; the race kicks off at 4:00 a.m., and the route’s 83.7 kilometers boast 5,960 meters (19,553 feet) of vertical gain.
At this year’s race, France’s Xavier Thevenard took first place overall, crossing the finish line in 11 hours and three minutes. Coming in first for the women was Sweden’s Mimmi Kotka, who finished in just under 13 hours with a time of 12 hours, 59 minutes.
Cristofer Clemente Mora (Spain) and Berger Romain (France) finished second and third respectively, while the women’s second and third places went to Australia’s Lucy Bartholomew (15th overall) and Russia’s Ekaterina Mityaeva (16th overall).
Check out these photos that capture the raw and tough beauty of the Mont Blanc 80K from start to finish.
Photos: Kirsten Kortebein