Welcome to my blog. The title originates when my primary athletic activity was competitive walking, but now that I am back to running it also includes that.

Not all content is accessible from the main page: for example, the rogaines, racewalking, and ultramarathon pages all include content that is only accessible from those pages.


Ultramarathons are any event longer than the standard marathon distance of 26.2 miles / 42.195km. Standard distances for ultras are 50km, 50 miles, 100km, and 100 miles. There are also 12 hour and 24 hour track runs, and multi-day "stage races".

I have currently (September 2012) completed 30 ultramarathons, plus 1 DNF at about 66km at the Molesworth Run. Reports for most events are provided below.

See also


Rogaining is the sport of long distance cross-country navigation. Events can be as short as 2-3 hours or the standard 24 hours. Teamwork, endurance, competition and an appreciation for the natural environment are features of the sport. Rogaining involves both route planning and navigation between checkpoints using a variety of map types.

GN Phillips and RJ Phillips, Rogaining, 3rd ed, 2000

The two main umbrella organisations for rogaining in New Zealand are: My reports for selected events are provided below.

Hiking and Mountains

The Hiking, Trail Running, and Mountains pages are all inter-related, but with some subtle differences:
  • Hiking is not an organised race, and may include Coastal Adventures, activities in the Mountains, and hiking in other locations;
  • Trail Running covers organised events, some in the mountains, but others on local hills and trails; and
  • The Mountains category covers both events and hiking in various places that can be classed as mountains.

  • Racewalking

    Racewalking only has to meet two technical requirements:
    • no loss of contact, as judged by the human eye; and
    • the leg has to be straight from the moment of first contact until it is upright.
    More detailed rules are here.

    I'm not particularly good at racewalking, often falling foul of the straight leg rule. But I still give it a go and here are the results of my endeavours.


    This blog is primarily about my walking activities, but sometimes I do run. Here are reports for events where I have run.

    Shorter Races

    I classify events as ultramarathons, marathons, rogaines, and "shorter events". So a "shorter event" is just something that is shorter than a marathon and is not a rogaine. Consequently there's a mixed bag in here: running, racewalking, half marathons, 10k and 5k races, , etc.

    Saturday, December 4, 2010

    Kepler Challenge

    This was my 7th ultramarathon for 2010, and I hadn't trained properly since the 24 hour race in October so serious racing was out of the question. I had done a bit of running training, and the main plan was to get Heather round the course in her target time of 10h:30m or less.

    In brief, we ran the 5km to Brod Bay, and then walked the long climb up to the bushline. After a short breather for Heather we ran around to Luxmore Hut. On this section we saw Glenn Tachiyama, who was indulging in his passion of photographing ultramarathons.

    Behind Luxmore Hut there is another long climb around the flanks of Mt Luxmore. Early in this climb we saw Paul Charteris, who was also photographing runners.

    With most of the Mt Luxmore climb done the 7-in-7 runners caught and passed us. At around about the same time we passed a woman who was sitting in a yoga pose on a rock beside the track. The shot was obviously posed, for two photographers who are just out of shot.

    Heather running on the tops, South Fiord of Lake
    Te Anau in the background.
    Descending to Forest Burn Shelter
    Descending to Forest Burn Shelter.
    Starting down the steps.
    Starting down the steps that mark the beginning of
    the descent.
    We alternated running and walking along the tops, and were both very pleased when there was no more climbing to be done. A quick stop at Hanging Valley Shelter, then down the steps and then the long descent to Iris Burn Hut with two sets of interminable switch-backs.

    Not far down the track from Iris Burn Hut there is a clear area, and along here the TV helicopter did multiple flybys to obtain footage. After putting on a good show for the helicopter it was back into the bush and we started to walk. Heather's legs seemed to have run out of steam after the long descent into Iris Burn, and now we were walking a lot more than running.

    After a short stop at the Rocky Point aid station we continued on to Moturau Hut. Someone said it was 28 degrees - that seemed about right - it was extremely hot out in the sun, and still hot in the shade of the bush. After another short stop it was on towards Rainbow Reach and we started to run some more.

    Just 10km from Rainbow Reach to the finish, and seemed to run more along here than we had since descending to Iris Burn. The distance is split up nicely with a couple of extra drink stations, and then finally was the 1km to go sign. Out of the bush and a short, hot stretch in the sun, then across the control gates to the finish. 10h:31m:38s, so pretty close to Heather's target.

  • Race website
  • My photos on Flickr
  • Paul Charteris' photos on Flickr
  • Race report from Grant Guise (4th)

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