Friday, February 27, 2015

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 98 miles down and 1,701 miles to go

Tom Bombadil

I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” earlier this week by logging six more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged three miles on Sunday and three more miles today (Friday). So far, I’ve logged 98 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 1,701 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about five percent of the total trip.

In relation to Frodo’s journey, I’m still only on the fifth day of his trip. I left off last week at Mile 92, around 4 p.m. on Day 4. Frodo’s group had just entered a “fold” too deep to leave and followed it southeast to Withywindle.

Around Mile 93, Merry finds a path along the bank of the river. Frodo’s group follows it east through a patch of wetlands. Two miles later, around Mile 95, the group stops by Old Man Willow to rest around 5:30 p.m. The group is subsequently rescued by Tom Bombadil around 6 p.m.

Three miles later, the group reaches Tom Bombadil’s house, and they witness the stars come out around 7 p.m. It rains the next day, Day 5, which is Sept. 27 on the Middle Earth calendar, so the group spends the entire day at Tom Bombadil’s house before setting out again on Sept. 28. (My update next week will start at this point.)

For those of you reading this for the first time, I began this “Walk to Mordor” fitness challenge on Jan. 1. Using a book called “The Atlas of Middle-Earth” by Karen Wynn Fonstad, fans of “The Lord of the Rings” created this challenge by mapping out Frodo’s fictional trek to Mordor, calculating the total distance at 1,799 miles. They also used the original "Lord of the Rings" text to outline the journey, so you can follow their route by keeping up with your total mileage.

Those who worked out the nuts and bolts of this virtual journey have divided it into four parts. It’s 458 miles from Hobbiton to Rivendell, 462 miles from Rivendell through Moria to Lothlorien, 389 miles from Lothlorien down the Anduin to Rauros Falls and 470 miles from Rauros to Mount Doom. (Those locations should sound familiar to “Lord of the Rings” fans.) The hobbits averaged 18 miles a day, but if you walk (or jog, as I sometimes do) five miles a day, it’s possible to cover 1,799 miles in a year.

If you’re interested in learning more about the “Walk to Mordor Challenge,” I suggest you check out two Web sites, and Both of these sites provide a ton of details about the challenge, including how to get started.

In the end, check back next Friday for another update and to see how much closer I am to Mordor. I hope to knock out at least 13 more miles next week, and I’ll include all that in my update next week.

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