MdS Photos: A Race Tour

On May 15, 2009, in Racing, by Meghan

This is the long-awaited Marathon des Sables (MdS) photo post! Please enjoy this photo tour through the 2009 Marathon des Sables (And please take heart in knowing that this is, finally, my last post about this race.). Once again, I want to thank you all for your commentary and support before, during, and after MdS!

The Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, which I believe is the world's second largest worship building

This building is, indeed, massive, but more impressive than its size is the detail that went into its design. We visited this mosque on our first day in Morocco.

From left to right are Dan, Darren, Leo, and Bryon

Bryon and I made quick friends with an awesome group of 4 Canadians, pictured (mostly) above. Andy was the 4th Canadian, and he apparently escaped being photographed here. We’re wandering around a square in Ouarzazate.

My dream ride is the Super Moto.

One of the things that I liked most about Morocco was that fine detail was of importance in art, architecture, and pretty much everything. This is a random front door in Ouarzazate.

Then the rains began, and our caravan to the MdS Bivouac stopped. The whole desert coursed with water in a cool-but-eerie way. Eventually the flood receded a bit and our caravan continued.

Holed up in the Hotal Kasbah Tazini in the small town of Erfoud, unable to get to the MdS Bivouac, we watched the unceasing storm's slow passage.

Miraculously, after 2 days, it stopped raining. Dan, Bryon, and I went on a running exploration of Erfoud.

Note that the little boys are obsessed with the comings and goings of the 1000 or so white people in their little town. I’m carrying a roll of plastic that we bought from Erfoud’s open market to fashion into “rain gear” for a bunch of people because none of us had brought anything even water resistant to the Sahara Desert.

The next day, we waited with hundreds of runners at the belated, relocated 2009 Marathon des Sables race check-in at a hotel in Erfoud.

This was taken on race morning as we waited for a bus ride to the race's starting line. I look nervous, don't I (from Bryon Powell)?

Atop a typical jebel, or mountain, with another in the distance, hundreds of MdS runners string out across the Sahara Desert (from George Velasco).

Morocco's famous Erg Chebbi, a massive, red dune field that the race route crossed during Stage 1 (from George Velasco)

We ran through a few villages and ruins of old villages, the only signs of population in this wild place (from George Velasco).

This is a reg, a rocky plain. Notably, this is the last reg of the race, and you can see the finish line spread in the photo's background (from George Velasco).

Typical Sahara Desert dunes, we saw a lot of small dune fields like these out there (from George Velasco).

George Velasco photographed me as I passed him during Stage 3, the long stage.

Even though I look fairly ridiculous, this photo makes a good study of my MdS gear. You can see Moeben arm sleeves on my wrists, a Buff around my neck, and those silly looking Raidlight gaiters; the arm sleeves, Buff, and gaiters all provided protection from sun, sand, and heat. Other notable pieces of equipment include my beloved Inov-8 Race Pro 22 backpack and the shoulder strap Raidlight water bottles with straws; if it’s possible to love inanimate objects, then I loved these two pieces of gear (from George Velasco).

And, passing Tess a little while later (from Tess Geddes)

Tent 100 in all our dirty glory!

Back row from left, George Velasco, Ted Archer, Michael Wardian, Bill Henderson, and Bryon Powell. Front row from left, myself and Tess Geddes (from George Velasco).

The studly 3rd placing men's team, the Dreamchasers!

From left, Bryon Powell, Ted Archer, and Michael Wardian pose while I take their picture (from George Velasco).

The top 3 women pose for pictures.

From left to right, Luz Cabajo from Spain, Didi Touda from Morocco, and I (from Bryon Powell).

All races have sweepers, and I suppose it's fitting to end this blog post with a picture of the MdS sweeper. The sweeper was composed of 2 camels and a few Berber men (from George Velasco).

8 Responses to “MdS Photos: A Race Tour”

  1. Sunshine Girl says:

    Me likes the super-moto. I need one. I could transport random backpackers to the trailhead here in Banff for a fee, whilst pumping 2 stroke smoke into the mountain air!!

    Love that tight lipped smile. Geez. You are SO tough you are scaring me into submissiveness.

  2. Danni says:

    I love that the sweeps are camels. That’s awesome.

  3. Roslyn says:

    Thanks so much for this whole fabulous adventure!

  4. JeffO says:

    Thanx so much for those fantastic photos.
    I especially liked the Tent 100 photo. You and Bryon have some crazy-scary I-eat-desert-for-breakfast smiles. Were the others scared of you?

  5. Backofpack says:

    Those are some amazing knee-high gaitors in the last photo. Love the camel too – did you get to ride one? Great photo essay – thanks!

  6. Journey to a Centum says:

    Meghan – I was reading one of my old posts from last year. I had made a statement about a running buddy I have whose motto is “Go Big or Go Home”.

    Your comment on that post says: Go Big or Go Home… got it!

    I guess you did get it.

    Thank you for allowing us inside this adventure.

  7. Bob - says:

    So Awesome Meghan…love the pics!! and DAMN that is one HUGE Buckle- haha

  8. "e Brutto" says:

    Nice trip, buff looking woman.

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