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2015_04_Rogue24 Adventuregaine

posted Apr 27, 2015, 4:02 AM by Guy O'Neill   [ updated Oct 14, 2015, 3:08 AM ]

25 April 2015

New Partner_ New Sport Glasses_Knee Pain_ Hypothermia_ Sugar Gliders_ and what a sunset!

The 24 is always destined to be an epic and 2015 certainly lived up to expectations.
My personal ride started even before the starting gun having gone through 2 race partners having to find my final starter only 3 weeks b4 the day. 
A beautiful setting was HQ at Camp Somerset, a grassy camp ground wedged between steep peaks right on the river.
Set-up camp was quick and easy, german sausages by the camp caretaker topped off an enjoyable & light-hearted Friday night, even squeezed in an ale.
New Partner_ a huge cheers to Christine Perry who came to my rescue and joined me for the 24hr. Normally partnering big Craig, Christine proved to be one tough competitor. She was ready to rumble from the word go. Although an obvious thoroughbred competitor, Christine proved just as accommodating when my knee pain surfaced very early in the race (damn injuries), right in the very first trek stage.
Stage 1 Kayak: our best leg of the event, proving that if you string together a good paddle you can scoop good points. In fact we should have spent more time on the water as we had very good paddle symmetry and powered down the river but leaving 120 uncollected points out there before coming to shore. Won't be doing that again.
Stage 2 Trek: so you've already heard, knee pain, yep starting popping pain killers before nightfall, not a good sign. Loved the trek! Terrain was absolutely beautiful and we were treated with a spectacular pink-fire sunset glowing under cumulus clouds.  
New Sports Glasses. Yeah! SO now I can see properly, and what a difference that makes! Highly recommend Oakley sport glasses, prescription lenses, not the clip-in's, and with bi-focal readers at the bottom, brilliant to refine the map reading. Not cheap but highly recommended to anyone else suffering ageing sight issues.
Stage 3 Bike: Holy Hills! Talk about hike-a-bikes where you slip backwards before moving forward, and multiple of them. Our only regret was not making it to the abseil section keeping to a strict time limit for each stage. We also missed judged carrying battery packs and both our bike lights died, relying then on our BlackDiamond hiking lamps for light to get us back to transition, where we were also eagerly awaiting our night gear of thermals and jackets. Sugar Glider... who sees sugar gliders? and running out on the ground? Other reported snakes and wild pigs... Us? Sugar Glider sighting. He was very cute.
Stage 4 Trek: Our one CP stage. But what a CP. A very steep spur was a very accurate description. And we nailed it. And the lantana nailed us as did the spurs. Sunrise and new energy surged inside, ready to complete this thing, and we found the gate only 30m to the left of the barbed fence we negotiated with little pleasure only an hour earlier. Ha! 
Stage 5 Bike part 2: Okay, another one CP stage, but we were on our way to clear the last kayak stage so no hanging around the hills, we had a dam to paddle.
Stage 6 Kayak: what a damn paddle this ended up being. Gale force winds blew up white caps right across the dam. Some teams seemd to be stationary or pushed backwards by the wind. Christine had left her gortex jacket on shore and soon enough was paying the price. At the last CP we collected we were both shivering uncontrollably. I was in better shape than Christine so donated my jacket to her as things were not looking good. Next I started stuffing the maps down my clothes to act as a wind block, then i remembered the survival blanket. i never thought I'd get to use that sucker, but now? Never leave home without a survival blanket. They work! I stripped down my clothes, wrapped myself with the survival blanket then pulled my shirt and pants back up over the blanket. I was cosy in no time. I crinkled a bit but came home far more comfortable than without it. Here's to mandatory safety equipment! Hypothermia averted.
A 24hr is always an effort, but boy you feel thrilled and accomplished when you finish them. Proud to finish and proud of every other competitor who did as well.
Looking forward to 2016 already... with a better equipped knee.

Distance / Time stats; 
Kayak 24km 5hrs 22min
Trek 41 km 8hrs
Bike 65.km 9hrs
Total 130km 22hrs 22min