June 19, 2021

Tomorrow the Barkley Marathon begins

Tomorrow the Barkley Marathon begins


Tomorrow begins The Barkley Marathon, a resistance test that more than that, a test, is a savage: it is a 160 kilometers travel to complete in 60 hours through a wild and inhospitable terrain, full of rocks, branches, rivers and natural traps of the most uncomfortable. That land is the state park Frozen Head of Tennessee. There is hardly time for sleep and rest in the test and the meal is too long; It is an exaggeration, the culmination of the resistance tests made a reality.

Its creator is Gary Cantrell, a man who, in his day, many years ago, completed the tour and began to popularize it as a career. However, it is difficult to access it: the secrecy of Gary Cantrell is characteristic, since there is no e-mail or telephone contact to register for the test. In fact, to start the challenge, you have to leave when the creator lights a cigarette.

Nor does it have excessive economic benefit for this. To participate, there is only one toll: pay $ 1.60 (goes out to cent per kilometer of race) and deliver a country registration of origin of the corridor. In return, he receives his dorsal, its compass to be located and a Casio watch. Everything else is forbidden; there are no avituallamentos or insurance for the march or a control point more than the beginning of the section, delimited by a yellow fence that can be disastrous: when a competitor goes through it, Gary Cantrell asks if he wants to continue and, if he does not, a funeral march will sound in his honor.

Just 15 people they have finished the race in the 32 editions that have been organized. Without a doubt, a hard and difficult test, exhausting both physically and mentally. It is to take the human being to its most extreme limit. It is a race against pain and against despair; it is, in the end, a race against oneself.

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