Experience the backcountry race of a lifetime in the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race

Posted By: The Ski Channel on February 16, 2010 7:46 am

Do you have what it takes to compete in the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race? You need a thick skin, adventurous spirit, and intense physical stamina. What is this race, you ask? The race website calls it a “true expedition”.

The race involves teams of four racing through the southern Patagonia region. They trek, climb, rope, kayak, bike, and explore the backcountry of areas previously unseen by human eyes. At times, hundreds of miles are traversed without interacting with another human.

Just to give you an idea of the kind of terrain racers can expect to encounter, here’s some more descriptions from their website: “Every edition features a unique route. Past racers have found themselves in the Southern Continental Ice Field, the Straight of Magellan, Torres del Paine, Tierra del Fuego, the Beagle Channel and Cape Horn. The land is diverse, the challenge real, the adventure untamed.”

Racers gather from all over the world, including countries like Australia, Canada, USA, México, New Zealand, South Africa, Denmark, Sweden, Russia, Spain, France, Germany, Turkey, Great Britain, Czech Republic, Colombia, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and Chile.

The winners this year hail from Great Britain. That’s right, the Helly Hansen-Prunesco team has become the first team in history to win the race twice in a row!

It took them seven days to reach the finish line on the Beagle Channel in Chile. They moved ahead in the second mountain bike section on the second day of the race. Here’s team captain Nicola MacLeod: “This is such a special race and it’s amazing to win it again – even more so because we have come back here with exactly the same team and beaten a high quality field. It has been tough, but we were well prepared and have had a great race. The route this year was challenging but also spectacular and it took us through some absolutely stunning surroundings. We race hard, but we still stop sometimes to take it all in and it is obvious Patagonia is at the tip of a continent – big wind, big weather, big sea and big mountains. Everything is extreme but also beautiful.”

Congratulations to team Helly Hansen-Prunesco! So…do you have what it takes to compete in the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race? Only one way to find out…