May 4, 2014

As you may already be aware, our team finished the Oxfam Trailwaker 100 km in 16 hours 23 minutes. It was good for 22nd place (not 21st as originally reported). Unfortunately, a couple of our team had to withdraw during the event – Paul with a torn medial ligament, and Richard with vomiting – but John and I managed to continue till the end.

The course was incredibly tough. The total distance was about 104 km and it included 2,450 metres of cumulative ascent. That’s over 8,000 feet of climbing. Some of the hills had gradients approaching 50%, and the downhills were as painful as the uphills. I was very pleased to complete such an arduous challenge on so little training. My quads are really feeling it now.

All in all it was a great experience, so thanks to Oxfam for the magnificant organization of the event. I would encourage anyone thinking of participating in a Trailwalker to do so. It’s very worthwhile and rewarding.

I’ll obviously be resting up for a little while, then I expect to start doing shorter but faster runs, perhaps leading to the City to Surf in August. I’m looking forward to testing myself against the clock again.


On This Day


May 4, 2012

Distance today = 46.36 km; Total distance = 6006.74 km; Location = Wellington (10 km south of) – 40 38.365′ N, 105 02.316′ W; Start time = 0849, Finish time = 1544


 Once again, I took the scenic route today; this time so could view historic old Fort Collins, as well as do some country running. I’m glad the rules are flexible and don’t require the most direct route between any two points, otherwise I’d miss too many things that are off to the side.

I started by running up into the first range of foothills of the Rockies, where I was told I’d have a great view of the town. It reminded me of the panorama from the lookout over Springfield in The Simpsons. There was no nuclear reactor in sight, however.

I then ran past the town’s huge stadium. It seemed out of proportion for the size of the town. I later saw a placard in a front yard, urging citizens to “Save Hughes Stadium”. I suspect the up-keep of such an enormous stadium is beyond the finances of the town.

From there I headed into the old part of town. As the name suggests, Fort Collins was established as a US Army fort to protect settlers. It was part of a system of fort towns that stretched along the eastern base of the Rockies in the 1800s. It doesn’t look like a fortified town anymore, but I’m sure its big university student population has it under siege a few times each year.

I finally hit a few trails that led me out of the town and on my way to Wellington to finish the day – back to some nice country running.

I passed 6,000 km in total for the world run just before finishing for the day. That means I’ve run 1,006 km in the past 20 days – right on track.


May 4, 2013

Distance today = 50.18 km; Total distance = 20,423.50 km; Location = Dragoman – 42 54.718′ N, 22 56.563′ E; Start time = 0819, Finish time = 1718


Reached my 16th country today – Bulgaria. I had a pretty good time on the road, through great countryside, and even managed about 10 km on a freeway that is under construction – no cars.

It was a day of total uphill, the first time I’ve had that since the Andes, though obviously not to the same degree. I thought the high point would be at the border, but it just kept going up.

I finished in the town of Dragoman, a nickname for Drago Radovanovic, known in English as Charlie Cugaly.

From there, we commuted to Sofia, where we met up with friends, Barry and Debbie. They will be travelling with us till the end of the European leg, in Istanbul. Must go now, as we’re heading off to dinner.

Tomorrow I’ll head back to Dragoman to run into Sofia.

PS The tracker will be behind the times until we get new Bulgarian SIM cards. Until then, I’ll only be able to update my position via wireless at night. My current position, as stated above, is in Dragoman, further to the east than what the tracker is showing.