Saturday, June 3, 2017

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 1,281 miles down and 518 miles to go

The Gates of Argonath.
I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” during the past week by logging seven more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged two miles on Sunday and five miles today (Saturday). So far, I’ve logged 1,281 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 518 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 71.2 percent of the total trip.


In relation to Frodo’s overall journey to destroy the One Ring at Mount Doom in Mordor, I’m on the tenth day of the trip past Lothlorien, which is Feb. 25 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off my last update on Mile 1274, which was five miles from the point from where Frodo’s group camped at the end of their travels on Feb. 24. Four miles later, at Mile 1278, the group passes through a brief, but heavy rain.


Two miles later, at Mile 1280, the group finds itself in a wide ravine with great, rocky sides and a few trees. I’ve traveled one mile past this point, and the next significant milestone comes three miles later, at Mile 1284, where the channel grows narrower and the river becomes swifter. Four miles later, the group reaches the Gates of Argonath.


For those of you reading this for the first time, I began this “Walk to Mordor” fitness challenge on Jan. 1, 2015. 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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