Last Desert Race, Day One – Deception Island

(first published on the Last Desert website on 4 November 2014)

Day 1 is done and dusted. Today’s stage was held on Deception Island – we were given just over 7 hours to run a 4.5km course.

The terrain was tough – half of the course was covered in a layer of ice, and with each step you went through the surface, and the other half was soft snow which felt like running in a dry riverbed. On top of this, the wind was very strong for most of the day, which made things even more challenging and very cold. Wind is most probably the single biggest challenge when running in Antarctica.

However, despite all this I completed 10 laps and feel very pleased with my performance. For someone who could not stand up straight on Monday due to sea sickness this is not too bad.

The landscape was truly spectacular – the course was next to active volcano and located around an old whaling station. Also saw penguins, seals and many bird species. Antarctica is really beautiful – more so than expected – and I feel very blessed to be here.

My feet are ok, and despite a freezing cold last hour during which my hands took a pounding, I feel strong and ready for tomorrow.

We have set sail for our next destination but will only know on Wednesday morning where the next stage will be held.

Thank you for all the blog comments and e-mail message. Please keep them coming.

Also remember to support my Greenpeace Africa fundraising campaign – http://www.greenpeace.org/africa.

Best wishes

David

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About David Barnard

This blog site covers my runs through the deserts of the world in support of social causes and campaigns dedicated to development issues in Africa. My next run is the 250km Big Red Run in Australia from 24-29 June 2017 in support of the Hippo Water Roller.
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