Friday, July 14, 2017

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 1,346 miles down and 433 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 on Saturday, five more on Wednesday and five more today (Friday). So far, I’ve logged 1,346 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 433 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 75.7 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 third day of the trip past Rauros Falls, which is Feb. 28 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off my last update on 1331, which was two miles from where Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee stopped to eat around noon on Feb. 27.


Two miles later, at Mile 1333, the cliff begins to curve more to the east, and two miles after that, at Mile 1335, they enter another ravine, where the cliff is still too high for them to descend. Four miles later, at Mile 1339, they climb into another ravine and camp at dusk at the end of the day on Feb. 27.


They get up at the start of the day on Feb. 28 and leave at dawn. Two miles later, at Mile 1341, the cliff begins to curve much more to the north and the Wetwang curves south. Three miles later, at Mile 1344, they enter another ravine. I’ve traveled two more miles past this point, to Mile 1346, where they wind around a rough area, and are forced back away from the cliff.


The next significant milestone, Mile 1349, comes three miles later as they continue to travel through barren, rugged hill, where there is not even any grass. Here they stop to eat.


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 1,779 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 1,779 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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