For those of a statistical bent, here’s some stats on my 2015 TGO Challenge, with a summary comparison with my 2014 Challenge.
The overall distance was just shy of 300km, 26.5km longer than my 2014 Challenge. In terms of total ascent, 2015 was very similar to 2014. My original plan was for much more climbing but I had to use my FWAs because of weather and snow.
In terms of time actually walked, I walked nearly 10 hours longer. However, my average speed was very similar. I walked a bit more off piste on this Challenge, so that’s not a bad effort. All timings are approximate and are actual walking time (subtracting an estimate for lunch/snack stops).
Just for a bit of fun, I’ve made some charts of key measures. Looking at daily distance, in the middle of the walk (days 4-9 inclusive), I was more consistent than last year by walking 23-26km per day. Last year, I had some shorter days interspersed. This section largely accounts for the greater overall distance. The daily time chart reflects a similar consistency. The ascent chart is remarkably similar.
This year, I definitely felt more tired, although I never felt trashed at the end of any day. I think I paced myself reasonably well. I put the tiredness down to the less benign weather, especially the sapping cold wind. It’s also possible that last year I benefited from the interspersing of short and long days, giving my body more time to recover.
Looking at the daily distance walked, it strikes me that my first three days were sensibly modest, giving my body time to adjust. I then put in some decently long days to break the back of the walk before having a more relaxed time from day 10 onwards. That strikes me as a nicely paced Challenge.
I had six days where I walked over 25km. Of those, four I walked solo. Overall, I walked seven days mainly or totally solo. I guess it’s not surprising that you tend to walk further when going solo. You can go at your own pace and lunch/snack stops tend to be shorter.
I don’t think there any startling conclusions to draw from these figures, but they will help with future planning. It’s interesting that my walking speed has been consistent between the two years. I might do a bit more analysis (for my own benefit) on how ascent affects speed, time and distance. On a higher level route, ascent would be a key variable.