Race: La Mision Race Argentina 160km – 8000m+ Fully Self-sufficient, semi self navigation.
Runner: Anouk B
Race Date: 12/13/2018
Location: Patagonia Villa La Angostura Argentina
Results: 1st Lady – 5th Overall
Strava Activity Link: https://www.strava.com/activities/2020924082
3 Bests – What aspects of the race did you like the most?
- That is was extremely remote, no villages, no shepherd huts or anything of human traces to be seen except for the actual vague trail.
- Afterwards I did feel like I had been Rambo on steroids, even though during the race I was cursing non-stop it was a very satisfying feeling finishing and having gone through that (snow storms, hail, rain, 150x at least glacier river crossings and all that without aid stations or help).
Not so much – Aspects of the race that didn’t do it for you
- Because there where no aid stations at all and it’s such a long race – it did get very lonely out there.
- It is very expensive for a non-chilean (non-south american) participant. They make you pay almost triple and you don’t get much in return (food, aid wise).
- I didn’t like so much that if you downgraded during the race you still would still be eligible for podium. The girl for example that had originally signed up for 200km race dropped to the 110km race and crossed finish line first. To get a finishing medal is one thing but to be on the podium to me should not have been allowed.
Weird factor – What’s the weirdest thing about this race?
The race is self-sufficient, so part of obligatory equipment was: sleeping bag, bivi bag, heavy rain jackets etc etc but also you had to carry a helmet!! This could be either a mob or a climbing helmet (this was for head protection as it’s very technical terrain). Luckily it wasn’t mandatory to wear it at all times.
Highlights of your race – What did you do well and enjoy about your race in particular?
- Getting to fishing line 1st lady and spraying for the first time a bottle of bubbles. Pretty cool feeling.
- I wish I could say I enjoyed it but I mainly enjoyed the post race feeling. It was a very hard race and I was just cursing and pushing hard the whole way just so that it could be finished earlier! It did give me a boost to the engine when I heard 3/4 into the race I was top 10 overall.
Lessons for others – Share your pro-tips on the race to help the next runner
I was very silly to carry 25x of the same cliff bars to eat – by the end and for the year to come I will not eat another cliff bar. Should have taken a variety of foods. I just thought it would make my race simple in not thinking about food. Bad choice. I also took a couple of self heating hot meals, but that was quiet a hassle – a sandwich would have been better.
At 45km there is a little stand that makes hamburgers – I bought a couple…that cold burger at 130km in was the best meal ever.
Be prepared to have wet feet during the WHOLE race – its unavoidable.
Lessons you learned that will help you next time around
Food choices as mentioned.
Most important course specific knowledge to know about the race
Download the course (mandatory) and study it as you will be so tired during the race, and especially at the end there is some need for proper navigating .
Aesthetics – Is it a pretty course?
It’s pretty, but due to the snow storm I couldn’t look around much at a couple of summits and then the other two big ones were during my evenings….so kinda bummed about it. But yes, it certainly is pretty.
Difficulty – Is it a tough course?
Organized and well run – Did it feel like a well-oiled machine or were they flying by the seat of their pants?
No, not well organized, did only see one medic at 15km in and that was is. It is so remote so even if you wanted to stop you had to hike out for a few hours.
Competition – Is there a strong field?
No, not that strong, some strong runners from South American continent but not many from outside South America (probably because of the fee).
Logistics – Does it require a special handshake, registration a year in advance, hotels all booked? Give us the low down on the nuts and bolts of making the race happen.
No, no need to apply far in advance. Villa La Angostura is a great little outdoors village, with great restaurants and shops. Definitely worth visiting.
Aid Stations – Standard fare or anything special to know about the aid stations in terms of what’s available or when?
No aid stations….fully self sufficient.
Weather and typical race conditions
It does get cold and windy but this year and somehow last year apparently were extreme.
Gear – Did you need anything special or is there anything you’d recommend for the next guy?
Proper waterproof pants/jackets/and gloves – no lightweight stuff
Spectators – Is this a friendly course for your friends?
Not at all, impossible. It is so remote.
How’s the Swag?
Terrible. An oversized t-shirt. But the podium prizes were cool.
The Overall Score – How many stars do you give this race and do you recommend that others run it?
Not many stars. Definitely do it is you are in the neighborhood and want a long race. There is an 110,160 and 200km option. Otherwise keep your money and run some of the course on your own. Hiking around there is beautiful!