Friday, December 18, 2015

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 441 miles down and 1,358 miles to go

I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” during the past week by logging six more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged three miles on Sunday and thre more miles today (Friday). So far, I’ve logged 441 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 1,358 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 24.5 percent of the total trip.


In relation to Frodo’s journey, I’m on the 27th day of his trip, which is Oct. 20 on the Middle Earth calendar.


I left off on my last update on Mile 435, which was three miles past a rest stop near the end of Day 26. Five miles later, at Mile 440, I came to the end of Day 26, where Frodo’s group camps where the road bends right to run down slope toward the River Bruinen. The group starts the following day by leaving early that morning, around 7 a.m., hobbling along toward Rivendell.


From that point, I’ve covered one mile. The next significant milestone comes six miles later, at Mile 447, where the road runs downhill, a place where there’s much grass on the sides of the road.


From Mile 441, I’m just 17 miles from Rivendell, and I hope to reach it by the end of the month. To do so, I’m going to have to log a little more than a mile a day to make it to Rivendell before the end of the year.


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

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