Ernest Hemingway was a journalist for the
Toronto Star when he first visited Pamplona in
1923 and 1924.  Everything he experienced was
distilled into “The Sun Also Rises”.  He came
to Pamplona nine times to see the bull run,
participating once.  As his literary fame grew,
tourists from all over the world came to
Pamplona to see first hand what he put on paper.
(Historical action photo)
Runners gather every morning
for a week at the beginning
of July.  The origin of the bull
run goes back to medieval times
when bulls for the afternoon
bullfight would be driven
through the city at dawn to
the public square that served
as a bull ring.  Many young
men from Pamplona became
accustomed to running in front
of the bulls, a practice that
was repeatedly banned by
authorities, but continued to
attract huge crowds, until it
finally ended up being a
tourist attraction.
Mike giving it a go – the streets are narrow
cobblestone, and the storefronts all have
metal shutters or doors to protect their glass.
You gotta be one tough
hombre to try this baby.
Runners carry newspapers as the practice is to
hit someone on the shoulder with the paper
when it is OK to run.  Obviously, hundreds have
been injured in the process.  The run starts at
8AM each day for 7 days.  The drinking starts
much earlier than that.  Reportedly the greatest
danger is not from the bulls, but from
runners trampling each other.
The route is known as Encierro, and these signs
are posted along the 1/2 mile stretch.  In a 

moment of panic, running the wrong direction
could be fatal. 


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