Friday, May 22, 2015

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 173 miles down and 1,626 miles to go

I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” during the past week by logging eight more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged five miles on Saturday and three miles on Monday. So far, I’ve logged 173 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 1,626 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 9.6 percent of the total trip.


In relation to Frodo’s journey, I’m on the tenth day of his trip, which is Oct. 2 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off on my last update on Day 10, at Mile 165, which is where Frodo’s group came out of the Chetwood. Eight miles later, at Mile 173, the ground begins to become damp as Frodo’s group enters the western edge of the Midgewater Marshes.


The next significant milestone will come six miles later, at Mile 179, when the group will camp in the western part of the Marshes at the end of Day 10.


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.


The folks 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 very 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 10 more miles next week, and I’ll include all that in my update next week.

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