Recce for RTP Georgia

16 May 2020 0 By Carlos Ultrarun

The first problem with him when dealing with RacingThePlanet designing a race in Georgia is my ignorance.
Apart from the “American State of Georgia” I did not know where the country was located, although I had an idea and the second was to realize that the total dimension of the country is 550km from East to West and my career had to be 250km, that is, half from the country.

With these wicks to start I started doing my preliminary work on the internet although I do not usually like the results for a reason: If there is a truly spectacular and easy to find site, it will be full of people and the places I want them to be. pass a RacingThePlanet race must be indeed spectacular but also as unpublished as possible, or better, known only to the locals who live nearby.

After a landing at a little unexpected hours, hotel and rest and the next day meeting with the local team, an essential part of the adventure since all logistics is much more practical to order from someone with experience, saves a lot of time and money.

The only problem is explaining to that team the needs we have since a 250km race in food self-sufficiency in 6 days is not a very normal activity.

The first objective is the desert of Georgia, which many people do not even know exists and whose greatest bulwark in terms of outstanding elements is the David Gareja monastery, on the border with Azerbaijan but as I immagine it is not the ideal for this race. The second problem is that the desert is incredible, but once there are two stages (maximum) there, you have to change your landscape and what surrounds the desert has a name that does not fit with a RacingThePlanet race: Civilization !!!.

After the high of getting to know the desert, the spirits are diluted greatly when verifying that this incredible landscape is too small and monotonous to accommodate all the race, we must look for more options and soon.

Here comes the part of extreme curiosity in which you have to start asking everyone about interesting areas of Georgia and then draw conclusions, something that is not done in Google.

Is more than accepted that the most spectacular part of the country is the Greater Caucasus mountain range, to the north, with Svaneti as an incredible region and Mestia its unofficial “capital”, but that brutal orography cannot be combined with a 250km race in food self-sufficiency where runners They carry backpacks of between 6 and 15 kilos with the necessary equipment unless our intention is not that they all die, or almost, the second day.

In Georgia there are also two regions with some political problems that we are not going to discuss here but they ostensibly reduce the surface area available. South Ossetia, in the north, central zone and Abkhazia in the west of the country.

This reduction in space was oppressing me quite a lot, used to big spaces and unless horizons like Mongolia or Islandia, there were really hard times, deciding where to go.

Good luck exists and I had it because thanks to a series of coincidences we found ourselves traveling again to the Javalkheti region, about 180km west of Tbilisi.

Initially it is a black spot on the maps, there is not much information so I like it, to begin with, and when I arrive I begin to enjoy the spaces I was looking for, spacious, sparsely inhabited and spectacular.

Interesting points follow one another and my Garmin is fuming, recording all the tracks and waypoints that I start to find.

That emotion, that feeling of tranquility for having found the right place begins to make itself felt and little by little the race takes shape. Logically I am not going to reveal here where it goes exactly nor am I going to upload the track, but I have to say that the result is more than optimal, a race worthy of RacingThePlanet and the very high standard that this organization has.

The race will take place from August 23 to 30, if Covid19 alow us.

More information here: RacingThePlanet Georgia