Never be satisfied with what you achieve, because it all pales in comparison with what you are capable of doing in the future. (quote – Rabbi Nochem Kaplan)
In April I am going to pre-register for this – http://www.dragonsbackrace.com/
Taken from the website:
The legendary Dragon’s Back Race™ follows the mountainous spine of Wales from Conwy Castle to Carreg Cennen Castle. This incredible 5-day journey is approximately 300 kilometres long with 17,000 metres of ascent across wild, trackless, remote and mountainous terrain. It is not a trail race.
The original Dragon’s Back Race™ happened just once in September 1992 and ever since, it has been whispered about with a mix of awe and trepidation. Its reputation had reached legendary status with fell, mountain and ultra runners the World over by September 2012 when the second Dragon’s Back Race™ happened.
Many had considered the 1992 Dragon’s Back Race™ to be the toughest mountain running event ever organised. However, the 2012 route was harder still and included all the Welsh 3,000ft mountains on the first day, a number of additional summits on the other days and less road running throughout.
The Dragon’s Back Race™ is one of the hardest mountain races in the World.
- Day 1
Carneddau, Glyders and Snowdon area
Straight line distance and height gain: 30 miles (48 km) / 19,700 ft (6,000m)
- Day 2
Moelwyns and Rhinogs area
Straight line distance and height gain: 27 miles (43 km) / 14,700 ft (4,500m)
- Day 3
Cadair Idris and Plynlimon area
Straight line distance and height gain: 34 miles (54 km) / 16,400 ft (5,000m)
- Day 4
Elan Valley area
Straight line distance and height gain: 37 miles (59 km) / 11,500 ft (3,500m)
- Day 5
Black Mountain area
Straight line distance and height gain: 34 miles (54 km) / 11,100 ft (3,400m)
Totals = 162 miles (260 km) / 58,730 ft (17,900m)
(Map and details courtesy of http://www.dragonsbackrace.com/)
Steeped in history this race has captured my imagination ever since I first saw the details back in early 2012 and the announcement of the next race in 2015 has inspired me to try to get the necessary experience to be considered for entry. That may seem a little vague in commitment but as part of the entry process the prospective entrant has to have a certain amount of experience to even be considered for such tough challenge, at a minimum it is the following:
- Ultra Distance Races
- Multiday Races
- Mountain Running
- Navigation in the Mountains
The way it works is that you pre-register on 1st April 2013 and then have until 8th September 2014 to tick all the boxes, if deemed to have the necessary experience you are then eligible for consideration, with 50% entry’s going to those with the best/most comprehensive experience and the other 50% pulled from a hat at random (if deemed to have above the minimum experience needed), so as you can see just getting to the consideration stage is an achievement.
People reading this may think that I am insane for even considering this, given the sheer amount of experience that is needed and the difficultly of the challenge itself, but I want to aim high and set my goals to the limit of what is achievable (as per the quote in the title).
If nothing else, the journey in getting this experience for the next year and a bit will be an achievement that I will be proud of and if, with a lot of effort and a little luck I am successful in entry I will be set to do something very special indeed.