In 2012, Darren, Deb, Craig and myself travelled to Queenstown for the highly anticipated return of expedition racing to New Zealand in the form of the GODZone Adventure Race. We had expectations of doing well – the team had previously done close to a dozen expedtion races between us and had raced numerous times together in the past.
The race started well with an iconic paddle through Milford Sound, a road ride up through Homer Tunnel and a paddle down the Eglinton River. Heading into the first night, we knew we had a big trek leg ahead of us – the first real test of route choice, navigation and cross coutnry travel for the race. It was at this point that the wheels fell off. In a leg that took longer than most races do in total, it felt like we were moving in slow motion with a couple of small navigtion mistakes, poor route choices and ill-timed sleep decisions costing us hours and hours. Definitely one of those legs I’d like to hit the reset button on and do over knowing what I know now.
Anyway, a lot of stories come out of a race leg like this. The video below should give you a taste of the journey we went through on that trek, as filmed by Darren Smith.