Friday, June 12, 2015

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 210 miles down and 1,589 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 Sunday and three miles on Wednesday. So far, I’ve logged 210 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 1,589 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 11.7 percent of the total trip.


In relation to Frodo’s journey, I’m on the twelfth day of his trip, which is Oct. 4 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off on my last update on Day 12, at Mile 202, which is four miles after Frodo’s group reaches the eastern edge of the Marshes. From this point, the group can see the Weather Hills ahead and the land starts to rise. The land here is drier and very barren and there are few birds.


From that point, I covered eight more miles, and I’ve got one more mile to go before I reach the next significant milestone. The next milestone will come at Mile 211 where the group will camp by a stream among stunted alder trees as the moon waxes at the end of Day 12.


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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