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RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014 Blogs

Day 4: No More Sand! (At least for today)
03-Sep-2014 01:29:06 AM [(GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi]

Today’s battle was a ‘short’ 40K in the hills of Madagascar. We actually had the benefit of some cloud coverage through checkpoint 2 (aka it was only 100 degrees and humid instead of 110 and humid). It was mostly on dirt trails (thankfully not sandy trails) and weaved up and down hills, through some rivers. You could see miles and miles across Madagascar. Once again I tried to chase the top 3 guys (they lost me as I got too ‘social’ at checkpoint 1.

The clouds disappeared between checkpoints 2 and 3, so the heat returned big time. We were climbing up a long hill through a number of Malagasy villages. Things definitely slowed down for me in the middle. I did see a number of random animals on the trail (iguanas, snakes, and chickens that I was considering hunting to get some protein).

Checkpoint 3 was at the base of a monstrous hill. However, at the top of the hill you had a great view of a crocodile infested lake. There was also an awesome breeze up there that kind of woke me up for the final few miles. The last part of the day was through the biggest village so far. There was food everywhere, but of course I didn’t have any money (plus shopping is illegal). They clearly were there to mess with our heads, and remind us of the ice cream, soda and meat-on-a-stick we’ve been craving.

Tomorrow is the long day, so it’s off to bed for me. I believe it’s 48 miles tomorrow. My biggest concern is keeping myself together through the hottest part of the day. That’s all for tonight!

10 COMMENTS

Kathryn McNeal

Posted: 05-Sep-2014 04:45:48 PM

All this talk of the Madagascar documentary we just had to watch. Hopefully Alex the lion is watching out for you and you get to finish your race at the bar the zebra built. You are almost done!!!! Keep up the good work! Lots of love, Kathryn

Daniel McKinnon

Posted: 05-Sep-2014 02:27:54 PM

Great work buddy! Keep it up. (And stay away from the talking penguins... they look cute, but they are deceptive. I saw it in a movie that I am pretty sure was a documentary on Madagascar)

Evy EVY

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 11:51:44 PM

ralph. congrats. you are done by the time u read this. I hope the Long Stage was somewhat enjoyable! haha. riiiiiight

Dewey Crowley

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 09:07:16 PM

... I think Gray was trying to get you excited for the "hamburgers, beer & pizza" you will have after tomorrow??? Good luck in the final stage! 48 miles is your wheel house. Seriously. All those races you've been crushing from Vermont to Pittsburgh have prepared you for this moment! Finish strong!!THEN, you can have all the food. And most importantly, listen to Sarah's advice. It's not the crocodiles you should be worried about... It's those conniving penguins.

Grayson Palmer

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 08:50:03 PM

Haha that didn't work :( Sad. Good luck anyway!!

Grayson Palmer

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 08:48:00 PM

YAAAY RALPHIE!!! Good luck with the last stage - just think of all the loaves of bread and chocolate cereal waiting for you when you get home! (Does that help or not?) Anyways, I wish I could put some crocodile and chicken emojis in here, but instead! I'll just leave you with these happy little animals :) GOOD LUCK!! |\__/| / \ /_,~ ~,_\ \@/ (\__/) (='.'=) (")_(") .-^--. )\/ (( o\ )/'''''----' [0,0] |)__) -”-”-

Bippy Crowley

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 02:38:44 PM

Keep up the good work and good luck on the long day tomorrow! p.s. remember it's the penguins you need to worry about, so the crocodiles should be fine

Emma Fergusson

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 12:38:30 PM

GO GO GO Muppet! Almost the home straight. Keep it up superman! ps. you've still got time to hunt some chickens tomorrow... but please no swimming with the crocodiles. I need you back in one piece so we can plan our next epic adventure! I'm thinking snowman trek...

Andrew Espin

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 06:35:21 AM

Good luck for the long stage, give it horns almost done now.

Dr. Jon Pizza

Posted: 04-Sep-2014 03:00:56 AM

Good luck tomorrow buddy! That short 48 mile stroll is the perfect opportunity to reclaim your lead over this British rookie. I like that your malaria prophylaxis plan is going to bed early; its better than those fools taking pills who are having crazy dreams and not sleeping a wink. Perfect strategy!

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RALPH CROWLEY
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