19 March 2018

Jungle Marathon 2017

By Ewan

The Jungle Marathon is held every year, deep in the heart of the Brazilian Amazon rainforest. Competitors can choose between a Marathon distance of 42km/26 miles, a four-stage race of 127km/79 miles, or an excruciating distance of 254km/158 miles over the span of a week. Often regarded as the toughest foot-race in the world (and the only one we know of where hammocks are a mandatory part of the kit list!), the participants endure temperatures up to 40°C and 99% humidity, as well as risking encounters with venomous snakes, spiders, scorpions and potentially jaguars!

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As well as the runners, the jungle fills up with volunteers of all kinds – vital to the success and well-being of the participants. A team of doctors and paramedics had the opportunity to spend ten days living in the jungle supporting the runners, and Rhonwen Mansfield Thomas was one of them, with her DD Frontline Hammock and SuperLight Tarp.

Freshly returned from the 2017 edition, Rhonwen kindly provided us with some great photos of her trip and shared her experiences from hammock camping in the Jungle – luckily her medical skills were not put too much to the test!

 

As the race course progresses down the river so does the base camp each night, our hammocks and tarps are set up daily. The majority of the team used the DD Frontline hammock which demonstrated its strength as it was able to support everyone!

 

The Frontline Hammock is quick and easy to put up and most importantly is a really comfy place to sleep, keeping us cool in the extreme heat and humidity.

 

The SuperLight Tarp was another essential bit of kit, with plenty of attachment points the tarp was simple to put up utilizing the trees we had available to us. In relation to its folded size and weight the ultralight tarp offers plenty of space to camp under, often being able to suspend two hammocks beneath it keeping us all dry. This meant we had spare tarps to set up a communal and social space where we could keep dry! 

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The race itself was successful and all of the team were proud to have supported the runners to get across the finish line, a phenomenal physical and psychological feat!

 

Spending ten days in the jungle was an incredible experience, we were able to visit local villages, try the food and even got involved in playing a game of football. We saw some interesting wildlife, swam in the Tapajós and had a great boat party once the race had finished!

 

*****

Well done to Rhonwen and all the volunteers and participants of the 2017 Jungle Marathon from us at DD Hammocks! An incredible feat of endurance and skill from all who were involved.

Do you use your DD gear for adventure sports in extreme places? We would love to hear from you if so! Send us your stories via our website or Facebook, or tag your photos with #ddhammocks for a chance to be featured on our Instagram page!

All photos and captions from Rhonwen Mansfield-Thomas

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About the writer

Ewan

Growing up in the far Northwest Highlands of Scotland, Ewan is no stranger to the Great Outdoors. Now part of the DD Hammocks team with a passion for cycling, hillwalking and outdoor sports, Ewan is super keen to spread the joys of the outdoor lifestyle to all!



Jungle Marathon 2017

Medic Rhonwen Mansfield-Thomas reports back from her time volunteering at the 2017 Jungle Marathon, Brazil. Hammocks, tarps, humidity and spiders all feature in abundance!
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