I'm not a natural blogger and I'm no techie. I'm an ultra trail runner by passion, and a journalist by profession - in that order of priority.
In this blog I use the one to talk about the other - my trail thoughts, musings and meanderings about running mountains and trails.
I call it rockhoppin', just because... well... that's what we trail runners love to do!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Recipe for a cool adventure in Iceland


Take 300 well-seasoned runners from +50 countries, equip them with packs weighing between 7 and 13kg, each containing -5ºC sleeping bags, sleeping mats, medical kit, mandatory gear, and enough freeze-dried food, powders, bars and gels to live off for one very hungry week.

Spice with generous scoops of enthusiasm, determination, guts, perseverance and adventurous spirit.
Drive to western centre of Iceland, and place in freezer at extremely cold temperatures varying between -2ºC and 14ºC.

Turn up wind to maximum strength, and sprinkle liberally with icy rain at regular intervals.
Geothermal pools at 80-100ºC
Langjokull glacier with glacial lake & flag
Freeze in 6 phases over 250km for 7 days, watching carefully and adjusting placement in freezer when temperature and moisture conditions drop too low.

Sprinkle with generous handfuls of glaciers and geysers, lava fields and lakes, volcanic craters, dust clouds, shifting land plates, faults and fissures.

Stir regularly to reduce strains, twists and tears, treating and strapping whenever necessary to avoid swelling or seepage. Take out runners who fall off freezer tray.

Warm temporarily on 6th day by removing from wet freezer, then return on 7th day for short final blast of icy wind and rain.

Once fully refrozen, immerse in world famous Blue Lagoon geothermal spa, smear with deep cleansing silica paste and hydrate generously with cool Icelandic lager.


Laugh at fat feet, forget all pain of past week, and enjoy lavish buffet at awards banquet, while planning next self-sufficient 7-day stage race in remote region.
John & Caryn Kennedy, Andrew Espin, me








The South African contingent was strong!















at the top of a long lava field climb on Day 4


food + kit for a week


Our tent clearly had good taste in trail shoes


finishing the final stage with Lia Farley and Andrew Espin

Winner: Mo Foustok 23:04:08                                  Ladies winner:  Lia Farley 27:12:26
2nd place:  Justus Meyer 23:26:56                             2nd place:  Linda Doke 30:07:23
3rd place:  Tom Flummerfelt 25:31:20                         3rd place:  Virginie Goethals 31:38:25
4th place:  Ville Tuominen 25:35:57                            4th place:  Caryn Kennedy 31:39:13
5th place:  Ralph Crowley 25:40:19                            5th place:  Donna Nice 34:57:41

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