Grand Traverse Record Race
When you did your record of about 80 hours, how much running did you actually do. I mean, I know some people can walk as fast as others can jog, but did you and your partner actually decide ok, we're gana jog up this next hill, or did you just walk at a constant (and hectically fast pace) all the way?
Also, would be interested to know, how many of your 80 odd hours were spent sleeping/ taking breaks (does that exist on a supertraverse)?
@Stijn again "So, the question is, have you got something up your sleeve for the coming silly season?"
Sorry, did I read correctly? Are you sugesting I'm gana have a crack at it?? My names not yeti, nor Stijn, nor Intrepid... nor anything close to those!!!
The record itself:
Total time: 3d 9h 52m 52s
Total distance: 209km
Total ascent: 7810m
Total descent: 8515m
No running at all (alas)
Day 1: Sentinel – Easter Cave, 45km, 1885m ascent, 10hr 44min
Day 2: Easter Cave – Mafadi south side, 50km, 2345m, 14hr 45min
Day 3: Mafadi – Thabana Ntlenyana south side, 56km, 1855m, 16hr 8min
Day 4: Thabana – Bushman's Nek, 58km, 1730m, 15hr 23min.
Actual time walking (ie excluding all rest stops): 49hr 6min
Daily average walking speeds (excl. rests): 4.6, 4.1, 4.1, 4.2km/h
Total time lying down and trying to sleep: 19hr 30min
Training (since our decision to make an attempt, 10 Nov 2008):
Hikes: 10 (max 23.9km)
Runs: 1 (17.6km)
Total km: 154
Total Time: 38:42
Median speed: 6.1km/h
Background: Low mileage trail running and day hikes (mostly) for the last 6 years. Did a 2500km mountain bike tour last autumn which probably contributed a lot to endurance.
Hikes: 9 (max 41km)
Runs: 2 (max 5.3km)
Total km: 141
Total Time: 30:55
Median speed: 5.3km/h
Background: An adventure racing diet of hiking, mountain biking and occasional running.
Food consumed (Andrew):
Carried 5000 – 6000 kcal x 4 days, and used the following:
Pro Nutro (300g/day)
Powdered milk (mixed into Pro Nutro)
Banana loaf/fruitcake (2 slices/day)
Game (5 litres)
Maynards sweets (250g/day)
PVM bars (6)
Fritos (4 x 25g)
Dried pears (250g)
Cake mix (250g)
Safari bars (4)
Eat sum Mor (2 x 200g)
Biltong/droe wors (240g)
Jambos (2 x 125g)
I eat a lot when excercising, as you can see. This worked well in that I felt well fueled and strong right to the end of every day, escpecially late afternoon climbs. Still, it could be trimmed a bit, I suspect.
Salomon XT Wings (Stijn)
Salomon XA Comp (Andrew)
Both of us were satisfied with the shoes and would use them again for a similar trip.
Longsleeve shirt (wickdry/polyprop)
Lightweight waterproof jacket
Capestorm Helium jacket (Andrew only)
Light fleece top (Andrew only)
Down jacket (Stijn only)
2 x pair of socks
First Ascent Powerstretch tights
Other gear (we didn't both carry everything):
30 litre backpack, camelbak/waterbottles (1 litre capacity), sunscreen, headlamp, GPS, spare batteries, whistle, pocket knife, space blanket, water purification tablets, watch, dry bag, trekking poles (Stijn only), ziploc bags, toiletpaper, AR-X Sleeping Bag/Capestorm Wasp, compass, waterproof map case, maps, tent (sans inner), cellphone, first aid kit, duct tape, needle & thread, pepper spray, camera, Amarula Cream, cards.
How that all fitted in I don't know. Total mass per pack at start probably 10-11kg.
It is our belief that the record could be completed without Amarula or playing cards, but we weren't willing to take that chance.
ghaznavid wrote: Does anyone know if there is an official south to north speed record?
Not as far as I know. I don't think it's worth having a separate record since there are so few attempts on this thing anyway. But if you'd like an estimate, take the current record and add maybe an hour for the extra 700m ascent.
Andrew Porter, who took 20 hours off our time, ran hard on day 1, making it as far as Mafadi (95km) by midnight! We took 2 days to reach that point and that's where he saved the time. He hiked the rest at about the same pace as us.
Cobus & Ryno, who shaved 45 mins off Andrew's time, took a more consistent approach. I'm not sure how much running they did, but they only slept twice for about 2h each time. And their moving speed was faster than ours as well, which is impressive given the long hours and lack of recovery time they had.
plouw wrote: Thanks for the info Stijn!
keen to give it a go soon, not for the record attempt, but just because the conventional GT takes too long, regarding leave, commitments, etc.
I felt the same last year, but a GT is tough, to do it that quickly would be even more insane...
I have to say though, no matter how you end up doing it, a GT is really worth doing, all even partially serious Drakensberg hikers should do it at least one...
Fitness wrote: Considering the distances covered the time/ record is unbelievable,
I envy you guys for having the gumption of having a go .
What time of year is the best to try to a GT?
That depends, if you don't want the speed record, April is the most common month to go in, thunderstorms are mainly over, your odds of snow are low (well, unless I am in the group ), there is most likely no risk of rain or hail - your only real problem is strong winds. I have to say that by far the best way to do your first GT is in a hiking club, the only reason I joined Mountain Backpackers was to do the South to North GT this year and it was really worth doing, we had a really nice group, resupply was arranged by the more senior guys, learned a lot from the other members of the team etc.