This is how you run all the way around Africa’s ‘Mountain Kingdom’

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This is how you run all the way around Africa's 'Mountain Kingdom'
This is how you run all the way around Africa's 'Mountain Kingdom'

Africa-Press – Lesotho. Bagged’ read the very simple text message from Adrian Saffy, one of the vital support crew on the Navigate Lesotho project.

The text – which broadly translates to ‘conquered’ in mountaineering jargon – came through just after 1pm local time on April 27, 2022, some 16 days, six hours and 56 minutes after Ryan Sandes and Ryno Griesel first set off from Telle Bridge Border Post to circumnavigate Lesotho.

The pair, who have ‘bagged’ other big FKTs (Fastest Known Times) in the past, including the Drakensberg Grand Traverse and a section on the Great Himalaya Trail, overcame adverse weather conditions and navigated boundaries – both mental and physical – to successfully finish this challenge.

One that both men say was by far their toughest yet. “It’s pretty surreal to have circumnavigated Lesotho on foot,” said Sandes. “It was definitely a lot more challenging than we initially anticipated, especially the extreme weather we experienced in the mountain section – ice, snow and severe cold.

Having set off on April 11, the duo’s adventure took them to the most remote and untouched regions of the Mountain Kingdom and South Africa, putting their navigational skills, seasoned physical training and psychological fortitude to the test.

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