Mike's Travel Blog for travel tips and best hostels around the world!

Friday, October 13, 2017

OCR World Championship 3km 2017

OCRWC 2017 in Blue Mountain, Ontario, Canada.
The Age group I competed in was 20-29. I believe I started off too strong as by the end of the race the platinum rig obstacles were one after another and my forearms were burning. I had to take a minute break after each of those rigs. I completed all the obstacles on the first try. It was a fun sprint. I really enjoyed all these upper body obstacles in the short course a lot. I'm looking forward to the next short course!
Fastest times were just under 20 minutes.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Toughest - Oslo, Norway Sept 2, 2017

This was my first Toughest race. Consisted of 8km of pavement/trail terrain, with 2 steep recognizable hills which concluded 790m in elevation gain. Let me say first, in these obstacle races there are regular lanes and fast lanes. With completion of the fast hard lane, one can continue running. If you were to complete the regular lane, there was a crawl or an over under section that follows, and then you were able to keep running. If either lane was unsuccessful, you were to do a 200m penalty lap containing a 25 pound sandbag, and then proceed to the crawl or over/under which then follows the running. The great thing in this race was that the ladies did everything the men did, including same penalties, same weighted jerry can carries, same distances. The obstacles were awesome. The fast lane rig was tough, and I did a penalty loop there. There was also monkey bars, or the flying monkey in the fast lane. Also a choice betwen a high rope climb or the salmon ladder. The greatest thing, and my weakest , was the water obstacles. In 2 separate occasions we were supposed to swim 50 meters. This was not my strong point and I felt like I was drowning. I definitely took the longest to get accross as I can see people swiimming past me. Lastly, the last uphill was 350m of ascent, up the norweigean ski jump hill. It was a great photo finish! To add, the weather was positive and warm. The venue had a great atmosphere. There was also booths, giveaways, and competitions throughout the spectator area. I would love to do a Toughest race again!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Granada to Sierra Nevada to Travelez - August 28, 2017

Sunrise I started my trek at 600m altitude in Granada. It took 30km and 6 hours to reach Sierra Nevada and the ski slopes. This point was at 2000m altitude. After having a snack I kept going with the goal to reach the peak and head towards the highest city in the Hispanic mountains, Travelez. Little did I know, this would take longer than I thought due to terrible weather conditions. Once I started the hike from Sierra Nevada, the weather turned really windy and misty. After every step upward, there was less and less vegetation. Soon I would reach 3000m in altitude and it was raining with very little visibility. My raincover doesn't cover my whole backpack so this doesn't help. Yes, I was hiking this whole trek with a 12kg backpack! The highest point I reached was 3300m, this was just past the highest point of the ski slopes where the chair lifts go. I couldn't see anything beyond 10 meters. I met 2 trekkers in a building that said they were camping the night. It was still sunny outside so I kept going, but little did I know I was in for a disaster. The winds were really strong, the temperature was really cold. The temperature dropped from 30 degrees in the city, to 8 degrees at the peak. The winds were so strong, there were some rock slides only a few meters away from me. It was pretty scary, so I began to pick up my pace. I was hit with hail multiple times during this trek. The 3rd time it hailed I had to cover my head because the size of the hail was hurtful. 12 hours has past and it became dark, and I was still above 3000m in altitude. There were thunderstorms with lightning on either side of me for hours with some breaks in between. The lightning was so close that at moments I had to stop and get close to the ground. By this point I'm all wet, carried wet clothes in my backpack. I have 3km left to get to Travelez, running almost blindly with my headlamp, following the streams of water. The shortcut to town lead through some farmer fields with private fences. I had to get my way around some barbed wire, mud slides, and bushes with thorns that ripped up everything. I slipped a number of times during this last leg of the trek. at 23:00 I managed to get into town, alive. This whole rekt took me 15 hours and 60km, with 3500m in vertical ascent!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Caminito del Rey, August 26 2017

Near the city El Chorro lies a historic site of transporting goods. It was onced named the most dangerous hike. This 8km hike is one to remember. The trail is alongside the mountain for 5km. It recently opened again for the public in 2013 as safety rops and barriers were installed. There was only 140m of elevation gain but the views were outstanding. It may be scary if you are afraid of heights. After the 2km walk you may enjoy the beachside where you can go for a swim, and even do some cliff diving!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Natural Park del MontGo - August 24, 2017

A hike that lies in Xabia, Spain near Javea. During the warm hot summers of Spain I recommend taking some water. The trail starts out in sand, and turns to rocky gravel. The peak is basically climbing rocks. It is only 3.2km but has an incline of 550m. A steady climb can be finished in 50 minutes. The views can be spectacular!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Kotor to Fortress to Lovcen National Park, August 13, 2017

This was a constant uphill battle. From The Kotor city laying just above sea level, it took 1km and 270m in ascent to reach the top of the fortress. From the fortress you crawl through a window and follow the trail 5km to reach the road. You stay on the road another 12km to reach the peak of Lovcen. Little did I know the google map points to the prohibited military zone instead of the monastary. The total hike from the city to Lovcen was 18km, with 1700m in elevation gain. It was really hot, and my tendons were stretching beyond my confort level. This took about 3-3.5 hours. Luckily I hitch hiked back down :D The road was also swirwing back and forth so the ride did take 30 minutes.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Srd Hike, Fort Imperial Trail, Aug 11 2017

A nice easy uphill trail from Dubrovnik to the peak where the Imperial Fort lies. The 3.2km hike is also a pathway for religion showing the stations of the cross. This is a great place to see the sunset. With a steady walking pace, this 400m elevation hike can be finished in 50 minutes or less!