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Xtreme Survival ‘Insane like a hurricane’ 2018


Last week, Saturday April 14 was the big day ! Xtreme Survival took place on that specific day, although preparations for this day had started weeks before this date. Hikings had been organised every weekend for some teams, like the “veterans” who knew how tough this event is every year. Other teams knew they would be fit enough because of other forms of training during the whole year. But some others had under estimated  this activity and of course they  would have the worst during that 14th April.

It was to be expected that lots of trails would have been gone because of Irma. The hikers could confirm this because they had tried all possible trails. Indeed the usual 10 activities to be qualified had been skipped this year because of this reason. Maybe it was insane to organise this Xtreme survival this year, but everyone was happy that the gym team had insisted to make it work.
Xtreme Survival started 14th April at the Belair Community Center at 06.00 a.m. All teams  had to sign up before 06.15 and received a mini first aid kit and zip locks for their phones. At the start signal all teams had to run up to Fort Hill. At the top pictures were made of every team. Instructions were given and the real race would start from now. A race indeed, because every hike or other assignment had a target time, which was not always easy to achieve. Sometimes you really had to run. Experienced runners therefore always have an advantage. But the spirit of the game is to reach the finish line. That is the most important achievement and the fun of it all: surviving !

The teams had to climb over the Sea Wall and go over the ocean blocks towards Philipsburg. They had been warned for the high waves, which indeed made this hike a very wet and slippery one. Once arrived at the post there was a swimming race and a kayak race. To fill time in between, games were played to get some extra points, like mastermind, jumping from one side to another, climbing stairs, collecting objects etc. A real running race took place before starting the nexts hikes which passed through Point Blanche, Geneve Bay , Natural Pool and finally Guana Bay where the teams had to ride a rocky tour on mountain bikes. In between there were posts  where snacks and drinks were handed out; where games took place; and posts where teams could rest for a short time.

The bonus hike consisted in going up the Naked Boy Hill. That is such a steep trail which would have cost lots of energy and its target time was very short. Therefore many teams skipped the bonus hike to save energy. But it made the difference, as most of the teams that ended up in the top 5 had done this bonus hike.
The last hike to the finish wasn’t really a hike, but a long walk along Suckergarden Road towards the Boardwalk. One could be tempted to take a shortcut, but everyone had been warned for the “spies” who would inform the staff and it would have cost a lot of points. So everyone kept on walking according the instructions given.

The finish line was at Nazca’s, Bert van Driel’s restaurant which was kindly made available for this event and which had been a post also during a former hike. It looked like a navy camp and indeed it was! Marines were waiting for the teams for the last efforts, which consisted in running on the beach, crawling under nets and trucks, jumping over a truck, doing push ups. It was “killing” everyone and the Marines gained a lot of respect. It was their daily job and it became clear that it is a real tough survival job. These well trained men in uniform were very kind, supporting and motivating. They taught everyone that you can still do a lot although you think you are without any energy left.

The final assignment was more relaxing. Each team had to  construct a kite that could really fly for a while. Not as easy as one would think though. “We must be insane to participate” , but knowing that the following year many would subscribe again.
“Insane like hurricane” was the 14th Xtreme Survival. It was a huge success, well organised and FUN. We are all waiting for number 15.
Renée Urgert (teacher at MPC and participant for the fifth time with team Resilience)

At last the barbecue. Everyone was hungry after that long -almost 12 hours taking - exhausting,  but wonderful event. Happy to have made it -again for some- and repeating those famous words
“We must be insane to participate” , but knowing that the following year many would subscribe again.

“Insane like hurricane” was the 14th Xtreme Survival. It was a huge success, well organised and FUN. We are all waiting for number 15.

Renée Urgert (teacher at MPC and participant for the fifth time with team Resilience)

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