Found the first 12 kilometres really tough, but then someone must’ve put something in my drink as I stormed up the hill from CP1 and down into a beautiful valley of dunes. Ran with a lovely 60+ Moroccan, Amine and had lots of laughs.
Crossing the dry lake from CP2 was “encroyable”! The ground was like an old elephant’s skin. A sandstorm blew across and I could barely see the runner in front. Quite exciting in a rather scary way…
A few toenails trying hard to part company with my toes, but other than that all good. Filthy and my hairstyle is something special – and would you believe it? Sand everywhere!
I finished today with Ahmed from my tent. He’s awesome… He caught me with about 1 km to go. I was giving all those in earshot a full rendition of “Les Mis.” 🙂
There are some French firemen pulling disabled children along on a wheelchair. Watching them finish each day is something very unique.
Love from a very dirty, smelly, but happy Harry. Big day tomorrow, steady as she goes! xxxx
A bit of cloud cover to start with lulled us into a false sense of security and everyone was going ‘guns blazing’ to CP1. A lot of folk, tired from yesterday, began to slow up and the first real dune field reduced a lot of runners to walking.
I love dunes. No stones and the sand is soft going down, and going up well, Jon would never forgive me if I didn’t charge up them. Each one was just a step-up session…
CP2 to CP3: Well that was something else… 6 miles across a flat, dry lake. It went on for ever and ever and EVER. Head down and just keep going. My feet felt like I had hot coals in them and at one point it felt like a blister exploded. (I have spent the last hour in “Doc Trotters” to have my feet mummified – all patched up for tomorrow).
CP3 onwards: Beautiful dunes. I popped on my iPod and a mixture of David Guetta and Nina Simone saw me through. Pipped to the post by an Italian as we tried to outrun each other! GRRR!
A new day tomorrow… Off to eat dried shepherd’s pie!
Stage 1 complete!
Phew, that was something! 46 degrees apparently and it is going to get hotter!!! But what can I say: it is simply magical and awesome to be back here. I did it in about 5 hours. Someone put in a massively long hill right before the finish in the heat of the day which never ended and then the longest 3km to the bivouac – not sure who measured that one. It was a beautiful day though, stunning to run through the oueds and jebels, urged on by many beautiful (but dirty handed) children at points. I ran with some great folk at variuos points and was 4th into my tent just ahead of Sam (539). The competition is fierce at the front and also with the female Brits… I think just finishing in this heat is going to be an achievement. All toes intact and so far blister free.
It is just incredible to be here again. Tiyanjane I can hear your voices. Catherine I carry your heart, wings and star with me. I love you all! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx