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Running of the Bulls

Would you participate in the Running of the Bulls if given the chance?  

  1. 1. Would you participate in the Running of the Bulls if given the chance?

    • Yes, I would for the thrill of it.
    • No, are you crazy?
    • Yes, only if they pay me to.
    • Maybe

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Romanticized in Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, the annual Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, Spain gives thrill-seekers (or death-seekers) the opportunity to outrun a charge of bulls behind their rear.

Would you ever participate in this event if given the chance? What are the chances of being outrun and getting hit?

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Few women have participated in the Running of the Bulls. However this woman did:


"...Fortunately, most runners have better luck. Dianne Galliano, a financial planner in San Diego, California, is one of the few women to have participated in the event. She came to Pamplona in 2000 to see her husband, Robert, fulfill his lifelong dream of running with the bulls.

Once in Pamplona, however, Galliano decided to join her husband on his quest. The marathon runner says she was delighted to accomplish the feat but feels once was enough. "I don't want to tempt fate," she said.

Donald Zuk, 66, a former amateur bullfighter from Los Angeles, California, said the experience of his uncommon hobby came in handy when he ran his first encierro last year. "You learn to keep calm and [not] panic," Zuk said. "To conquer your fear—there's no feeling in the world that's better than that."

Nonetheless, Zuk, an insurance-company president, considers himself "very lucky" to have made it through unscathed.

Dan Blumenthal, a chef, restaurant owner, and self-described "adrenaline junkie" from Jackson, Mississippi, said he chose to run because the experience promised to be one of a kind.

"It's a time-honored tradition," Blumenthal said. "It's a wonderful festival, and … it's a very singular experience that you can't get anywhere else."

The fact that the encierros make up only a fraction of the San Fermín festival activities is something first-time visitors often are surprised to learn..."

I think you will be ok as long as the bulls do not choose you as a specific target. There must be things on the side of the streets where you can climb over to escape the bulls while they are whizzing by. But that would not be called participating in the event. More like chickening out. :D

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Although I am Spanish, and a northener, I have never been to Pamplona. I have often thought of going for the San Fermín festival, but I would never dare run in front of the bulls. It is just too risky and I don't see the point.

People who are severely wounded are very often foreigners, and the reason for this is that they often aren't aware of the basic rules that the locals know, like what to do if you fall to the ground, where it is safer to move to one side, and so on. Because of that, the Pamplona locals who run every year rarely get hurt. I am not sure whether such a dangerous celebration makes any sense, but, whatever, I would leave it to the locals to do the running.

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After thinking this through, life is too short to risk endangering yourself just for the sake of running in front of a charge of bulls, with no benefit other than pure thrill. I would not do it even if I was offered a million dollars and knew I could do it safely.

It is a very interesting event though, and I wonder how the locals can participate in the event without endangering themselves. It is interesting to note that the last fatality occurred in 1995 when an American participant was gored to death. Other than that, there has been only 13 fatalities since 1924.

Why do they kill the bulls afterwards? If I ever visit Spain, I would like to attend the San Fermin Festival, excluding the Running of the Bulls.

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Sensible decision :)

As for the locals not being endangered, I think it is what I said before, that they know the basic rules on how to avoid being attacked by a bull. Also, they are familiar with the terrain ("does the street turn left or right here?", "are we very far from the end?", these sort of things), so they are less likely to panic.

Why do they kill the bulls afterwards?

The running of the bulls happens every morning during the festival's week, and there are bullfights in the afternoon. It is in the course of the bullfights that the bulls get killed.

Even if you don't like bullfighting or don't want to run in front of the bulls, the San Fermín festival attracts large crowds to Pamplona every year. In recent years, the authorities, worried about the bad reputation of the festival as a huge binge-drinking party, have tried to enhance the relevance of cultural events. Whatever your interests, visiting Pamplona during the first week of July will be a remarkable experience.

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someone sent me this in an email with subject

"The Last Photo I Ever Took" Contest...

I assume this is what you guys are talking about.

Those who said yes, care to change your mind?


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