Warning: the following words and images will allow you to vicariously see the world with the eyes of Sultan. Read at your own risk. The name Sultan has many meanings, but derives from the peak Sultan Mountain in Silverton, CO!

Friday, February 13, 2009

MdS Food Prep

Six weeks to go before I take off to Ourzazate, Morocco for the Marathon Des Sable (MdS). The MdS is a 7 day, 150+ mile (243km) endurance race across the Sahara Desert in Morocco taking place March 29-April 4, 2009. The race organizers website is (http://www.darbaroud.com/). During the race, you can visit the website and send me an electronic message, which will then be printed out and delivered to my tent each night of the race.

There are six stages over the seven days, with the first three daily stages set around 20 miles each. The fourth stage is around 50 miles; the fifth stage is always a full marathon of 26.2 miles, and the sixth (and last) stage is from 9-12 miles.
The terrain at the MDS is not all giant sand dunes. In fact, most of the course is run over salt flats, dried up river beds, rocky desert plains, and ancient, dried up lakes. And, it is not uncommon for the course to wander through a remote desert village. The course is usually well marked and all competitors receive a "Road Book" which provides an official course description for each stage.

Temperatures can be extreme, with possible daytime highs reaching 125°F and night-time lows of 38°F. Additionally, the occasional sandstorm can add to the mix. Thus, competitors should be prepared for anything.

The race is entirly self sufficient with the exception of water and a tent over your head. This means I will be carrying all my food for the entire 7 days in my backpack, in addition to all my gear, sleeping pad, and sleeping bag.

Today I layed out some of the food I plan to take. In this photo of food there is just over 13 pounds of food with a total calorie output of 24,050 calories. The peanut butter and the macaroni and cheese both by Mountain House packed the highest calorie per gram ratio at 6 calories per gram for the peanut butter and 5 calories per gram for the mac and cheese. I plan to take the food out of its packaging and repack it in freezer zip lock bags. I dont plan to take a stove and gas with me on this adventure, and just hope to utlize the 125 degree sun to cook my food!

More on the MdS later....


Paul said...

very nice you're blog
grtz from Belgium

Bryon Powell said...

Nice progress on the MdS food list. I ate a Backpacker's Pantry meal for lunch almost everyday last week so I could pick out my favorites. :-)

Mohammed said...

Bryon, thanks for the note! I'd be interested in learning about your Backpacker's Pantry analysis for the MDS. Mountain House seemed to pack the highest calorie/gram.

Bryon Powell said...

I haven't been and don't plan to be as scientific about choosing my dehydrated meals as I was/will be about choosing energy gels. I went with Backpacker's Pantry as I knew they had a large selection of vegetarian meals. I went through their list to pick out the vegetarian meals with relatively high protein content. I ordered one of each, have tried them, and will bring the ones that I liked the best! Pretty easy, huh? ;-) I should be posting more on my food choices in the next week or two.

Assim said...

Mohammed -
May God be with you!
I look forward in hearing about your journeys and stories. One day I hope to do this same race.