Friday, July 10, 2015

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 257 miles down and 1,542 miles to go

I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” during the past week by logging 15 more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged five miles Saturday, four miles on Monday, three miles on Wednesday and three miles today (Friday). So far, I’ve logged 257 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 1,542 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 14.3 percent of the total trip.


In relation to Frodo’s journey, I’m still on the fifteenth day of his trip, which is Oct. 7 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off on my last update on Day 15, at Mile 242, which was one mile beyond where Frodo’s group started the day, the first from Weathertop. Nine miles later, Frodo’s group crossed the Great East Road and entered the thickets on the south side of the road. At that point, the land begins to slope south.


I’ve logged six more miles since this point, and I’ve got three more to go before Frodo’s group camps in a thicket at the end of Day 15. In all, the group covers 19 miles on Day 15.


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 13 more miles next week, and I’ll include all that in my update next week.

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