Damn you Luc! You beat me, and get better footage!
In truth, even after the rain let up late on the third day I kept the camera stowed. Didn’t have the will to get much with it, sadly. These things never come close to doing what they’re meant to, but this one is table scraps from a meal that was never eaten.
So, onwards to the nuts and bolts, before I tackle the thoroughly intimidating task of really writing about the last two weeks.
First, I created an updated list of actual gear taken. You can look at it on BPL. In summary, next year (yes, next year!!) I’ll bring a small tarp rather than space bivvy. A tarp would also keep the rain off, perhaps reflect the heat of a fire better, and allow the fire to dry clothing while you sleep. This last was the biggest downside by far, and both Paige and I ended up using them as blankets for this reason. I’d also take rain pants, and warmer clothes. As an extra safety margin, and because a few days in your metabolism and heat production became a little idiosyncratic. A fleece vest, light puffy, and light fleece pants would be good. Of course, on warmer years like 2009, this would go mostly unused.
Next, our footwear worked out very well. I wore Injinji Coolmax mini-crews, Hydroskins, Dirty Girl gaiters and LaSportiva Crossleathers. Paige just wore Hydroskins and LaSportiva Fireblades. We got one blister between the two of us, one in the metatarsal crease next to the ball of my right foot, very late in the race, likely due to macerated skin. On the last bivvy we slept in our shoes, and thus had them on with no breaks for something like 27 hours. Paige suggested a shoes-off break on the soft tundra at the top of the final pass, and my demurring was a tactical error borne of impatience. We both got abrasions around our ankles from the back edges of our shoes rubbing them during all the sidehilling and uneven terrain, and I think the rolled edge of my low liner socks made this worse. Not sure what would have cured this problem. Overall, our feet got sore, but never close to debilitatingly so (even during the 8 miles of ATV trails at the very end).
Next, food. The above is what I actually brought, minus the olive oil. All the candy, coffee, soup mix, jerky, sesame snaps, and granola got eaten. Most of the cheese did too (the romano I brought was too hard). The halvah (bottom center zippie) never tasted all that good, neither did the almonds. I ate most of the chips, but other things were usually bettter. I had quite a bit more food than Paige, who finished with none (and ate two snickers of mine on the last day). I liked having a bit of a buffer, as on the last morning I had a hard time staying warm if I wasn’t stuffing my face. Overall a success, I’d bring more of some stuff and less of others in the future. If it had been warmer the salty stuff probably would’ve been in greater demand. Having a stove was vital. My cartridge was almost totally empty by the end, though more than half of that was likely using it to start fires. As a team it might be worth having one Jetboil for fast brewing, and one normal stove as a backup and primary fire starter. Perhaps.
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