The Fan Dance!

So a very quick update from me here. This coming Saturday I will be taking part in what is variously described as “the toughest endurance challenge yet”:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/active/10944512/Is-the-Fan-Dance-the-toughest-endurance-challenge-yet.html

or alternatively is just known as the SAS training course which ‘beasts’ the nation’s fittest special forces soldiers:

http://outsidetimes.com/adventures/the-fan-dance-a-run-through-a-slice-of-british-military-history-2387/#sriuMHYS4Av88Twq.97

Basically the Fan Dance has been used since WW2 as the physical and mental determinant of whether special forces troops (SAS and the like) and parachute regiment troops are up to task. Fail this and you’re out, in short. It is about 24km in length, has about 5 or 6 thousand feet of ascent, and covers the highest mountain in south Wales, Pen Y Fan, twice.

The Fan Dance has received notoriety in recent years as a few members of the armed forces died on this particular course for being ‘yomped’ a bit too hard. It has now been opened up to the public as an event for people who think that Tough Mudder is a bit easy. I’m not one of those, I have to say, and having done Tough Mudder last weekend, I presently think I am a bit mad, but hey ho, as they say!

Pen Y Fan from Cribyn

Pen Y Fan from Cribyn

The challenge is further ‘complicated’ by the fact that you need to carry between 35lbs and 45lbs of weight on your back, PLUS your food and water. There is also a cut off time of four hours. I have calculated that the two and a half litres of water than I plan to carry (two litres is mandatory, and they weigh everything before you start), plus food, will weigh about another 7 pounds, so I am looking at potentially 50 lbs on my back.

Like I said, maybe I am a bit mad 🙂

I’ll update this on Sunday all being well, and let you know how I get on. I’m not aiming for the cutoff time, just to get through it. I’m thinking 7 hours will be good, but maybe that is ambitious too, especially as the weather is supposed to be hot, at 20 degrees much too hot for this sort of thing for me.

Wish me the best of British…………..:)

The Brecon Four Peaks

Well this could be my shortest blog post ever, if only as I don’t have time to write it up. This is because, having just got home from work (it’s 8.20pm on a Friday evening), I’ve decided to do the ‘Brecon Four Peaks’ tomorrow.

I decided to do this because a.) I’m looking for somewhere to go over the weekend and I need some proper hills, b.) there are proper hills there, c.) they are about the closest proper hills (about three hours away) to where I live, and d.) I’ve never been there before. Oh, and e.) I’d like a recce of Pen Y Fan before I go and attempt the Welsh Three Peaks in two weeks time. Finally f.) Pen Y Fan itself is only about a three hour walk, and so I thought I’d combine it with something a bit longer 🙂

I’d never, until about 12 minutes ago, heard of the ‘Brecon Four Peaks’ before (I suppose that should have been point g.) above), and having just google the Brecons, it came up with this as a suggestion.

http://www.walkingbritain.co.uk/walks/walks/walk_b/2074/

It is 11 miles, and consists of Pen Y Fan, Corn Du, Fan Y Big, and Cribyn. Doesn’t sound too taxing, but “why not” is all I can say. I’ll be off at about 6 in the morning, probably.

Oh and there is a place near the top of Fan Y Big called “The Diving Board”. Best not get too close to the edge :O

The Diving Board, Fan Y Big..

The Diving Board, Fan Y Big..

That’s all 🙂

Have a great Bank Holiday Weekend.