ITERA Expedition Race 2016 Ireland

The latest round of OpenAdventure‘s ITERA Expedition Race is about to kick off in Ireland on the 16th August. Steve is competing in one of the teams, The Jolly Adventurers, and I will be working for OA supporting the event, somwhere! As yet the details are still secret, even from most of the staff!

You can see details of the event here ITERA Expedition Race 2016 IRELAND

TeamFans Finish

The Journey: Statistics

295 miles

Miles travelled on bike, foot and kayak

56 Miles


36.6 Miles

Paddled on a Kayak

31,000 ft

Height gained during the race


Hours sleep snatched


Control points punched


Miles at the RUN

201.7 Miles

Cycling on an MTB



4 d 23:30

Elapsed time

The Journey Starts Here

Get out of my head

In an effort to sort out that which sleep was unavailable to do, the memories and experiences of the recent ITERA Expedition Race Wales, I’ve begun to write them down here. Enjoy them if you will or not, it’s a long read and rather like the race you may lose some sleep if you stick it to the end. The first few pages are available and I’ll finish the others over the next week or so.

Feel free to comment and poke fun, make it constructive. I may have got times and events completely wrong, sleepmonsters do that to your head.

Thanks to James and the team for putting on such a well organised event, and for Tom for the Journey of a lifetime (so far). For all the marshalls for the encouragement and good humor and of course for my teammates, we did it together and finished together despite the difficulties.

Read from here

ITERA14 Prologue Cardiff Bay

First cut video compilation of the Prologue from the recent ITERA Expedition Race Wales 2014. The Prologue was a early pre-race special stage comprising of a 5k run around the Cardiff Bay Trail to the National White Water Centre, a descent of the rapids, then a 5k run back to the start. The times of each team were used to seed a penalty-stop on the 1st day of the actual race, at the ZipWorld special stage.


Après Le Deluge

Well it’s over and the team have dispersed to homes and holidays, one to a new job, another to the same old but happy with that. All of us with some fantastic memories of what was an epic experience, the week long ITERA Wales Expedition Race was indeed the journey we were promised.

The full story will emerge gradually as each of us come to terms with what we’ve done; as the last week begins to sink in and the brain digests the events and emotions we all experienced, the intensity of which beggar description.

For now I’ll leave you with a couple of photos and to say a huge thanks to all my teammates Jill, Heather and Steve, love to you all.






If there’s one thing that Adventure Racers, or indeed any endurance runners, talk about more than anything it’s food and drink, or “hydration” as the marketeers would like you to call it. There’s more bollocks* talked about these two subjects than any other, indeed everything else put together.

Whether its running the Bob Graham Round, cycling the C2C In A Day, the UTLD 100 mile ultra or a multi day expedition race like the ITERA, it’s all about calories. How much, how many and how to eat and drink them without going into deficit or throwing them back up onto the floor, or your sleeping bag.

The award winning outdoor retailer Above & Beyond, based in Morpeth not far from TeamFans, is providing some of the food we’re carrying on the ITERA. The freeze dried rations from Extreme Food should provide tasty, easy to prepare calories when on the move.

Above & Beyond

Above & Beyond

Extreme Food Logo

Extreme Food

* apologies for the language but we did warn you.


Lighting II

Petzl - High res



PETZL came up with the goods today and box of Tikka arrived at the office. The RXP and R+ will be programmed for maximum battery life should last 20 hrs or so. With the spare batteries that should be enough for the whole race. The other Tikka are “aaa” powered but amazingly powerful and will be standbys.

Petzl Tikka RXP


Jill, Steve and Rob

Off we go

As you can imagine “kit” is a big topic of discussion and debate amongst all Adventure Racers, and our team is no exception. All of us are experienced to one degree or another with one day events but planning  for a 5 day non stop race where one is likely to be “off-grid” for most if not all of the time is something else. Heather and Jill have the advantage of some experience on the Sting and Terrex so we know what to expect. Lighting is a key issue, even if it is summer and daylight does stretch into the evenings we are going to moving in the dark, both on foot and on the bike, maybe even on the water. A good head torch is therefore a must, along with bike lights. I’d been given a Petzl Tikka RXP for Christmas this year and been extremely impressed with it during our night run over the Yorkshire 3 Peaks. The reactive lighting modes, rather than the gimmick I thought it was at first, turns out to be highly effective. The system takes care of the different levels of light you need under different circumstances. The difference between reading maps close to hand and running along a track for example. The system adapts the light output and the beam to optimise the system for both, and to max the burn time.

Tikka RXP

Tikka RXP

The good news is that Petzl have agreed to sponsor the team for the ITERA and provide the rest of the team with a range of torches and spares for the race. This is fantastic news, budgets are already very tight and this will make a real difference.

The torch need to be programmed to get the best out of it. The interface is a little unusual but once the thing is connected to your PC, in my case a Mac, its a simple process to set the torch characteristic or what Petzl call profiles. Depending on your need the profiles can be set as either constant lighting modes or one of three reactive modes. These reactive modes vary between light output and beam width and predicted burn time. In our case I’ve set them to the simplest mode which should maximise the battery life whilst still giving a good middle distance output for running.


The Torch Programming App