Romania 2018: Vladeasa Winter Trail, 25.02

Have you met the frozen heaven? That place where everything is so white that you can barely see? That place where at some point you are so numb that not even your thoughts sound normal? That place where you don’t walk on snow, you are walking on clouds? The place where the gender doesn’t matter, because everyone is wearing mascara? (frozen white is the new trend)

I don’t know about you, but that’s what Vladeasa Winter Trail was for me. It might not be like the Ultra Arctic race, but it’s surely close enough. -20*C ain’t no joke 😀

Let me start from the beginning: 

Vladeasa Peak is the second highest peak in the Apuseni Mountains, Transylvania, around 1800m. We started climbing 950m from Rogojel, 7.5km up, then down the same road. 

Did you know 0*Celsius feels way worst that -10? When we arrived at the start line, the weather was quite comfortable. The “knife” started to poke my back right after the first hydration stop. I kept the smile on my face, mostly to look as great as possible on camera. 

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The higher I got, the heaven was turning whiter. I couldn’t breath. You may think that’s because the views were breathtaking…NOPE. Only half-truth . The other half-truth, was the cold. It was my first time running in -20C. I wanted to scream and cry and never do that again. My feet deepened into the snow too much, causing me extra discomfort and slowing me down.

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Keeping the smile on was a challenge, but as I was getting closer to the peak it got easier. Why? My smile froze! 

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The good thing is, up that very end, the magical PALINKA awaited. You know, the 50% alcohol plum drink, made with all the passion Romania can have. When I first found out about the fact that they serve it on the top I couldn’t believe it. I had a shot, stuffed my pockets with dried apricots and off I went.

20180227-123422.JPGOnly 7.5km left! And no more climbing. Should have been easier…just that I forgot to take high socks, so my biggest fear through this whole experience has been getting frostbite in my ankles. And guess what. I DID :))

Was a hell of an experience.

Oups! I mean..heavenly experience! 

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Bottom line, it’s all well when it ends well, right? 🙂

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