At the final dinner of each trip we like to ask everyone about their favorite and least favorite runs, meals and places, and we’re always struck by how diverse the answers are. One person’s “best day ever!” can be another person’s most challenging run of the trip, and someone who couldn’t get enough of the roast lamb in Patagonia will be countered by someone who will never forget the beautifully prepared salads from another meal. So, we thought it would be fun to play the same game on a wider scale by interviewing some of our “experts” - those who have traveled with us multiple times - and hearing about the experiences that stand out most to them from various corners of the world:
Describe your most memorable day:
I have two! I couldn’t decide which one is more memorable.
My first one was on our first run in Morocco. I was very nervous for the trip. Would I be a good enough runner, could I keep up, would people be friendly, was I crazy signing up for a trip knowing nothing about the organisation or anyone on the trip? Five km into that run I knew I had stumbled onto something special.
My second memorable day was in Patagonia. It was the day after my favourite run (see below). We started the day bright and early with a 8 km run along a spectacular lake. This was followed by a catamaran ride across the Blue Lago Pehoe. It was breathtaking! We then started out on a 12 km hike towards Grey Glacier. We finished the hike climbing across suspension bridges with amazing views of the glacier. The day wasn’t done there! We then went kayaking right up to the Glacier. I remember sitting down for dinner physically exhausted from the most spectacular day of running, hiking and kayaking and feeling so amazed by everything we got to experience that day.
Describe your favorite run:
One of my favourite runs was on the Patagonia trip. This run is on part of the Ultra Fiord Ultra trail race course. Makes you feel hardcore! You start with a breathtaking views surrounded by tourists. You quickly leave the tourists behind as they are enjoying the scenery from afar surrounded by buses and other people, while you get to run with views of multi-coloured lakes and the breath taking mountains. You finish with a nice single track descent into the Rio Serrano valley and end at a lovely eco friendly, locally owned accommodation. We even got to run with the owner! We iced our legs in the glacial lake while taking in the spectacular views.
Your favorite meal?
I’m vegetarian so I am always nervous traveling to foreign countries. Morocco’s tagines were amazing! I’m signed up from the Croatia/Slovenia trip so I’m sure my answer will change in May.
What was your most challenging moment or day?
I was scheduled to go back to Morocco in March. I couldn’t wait to go back! I remember getting home from work at 900 pm the night before I was supposed to leave to find out due to a storm in Boston my flight was cancelled. After multiple hours on hold (3-4 hours) I found out that due to a storm in Europe and the storm in New England they couldn’t reschedule my flight for 3 days. I made the tough decision to cancel my trip as I would have missed a large chunk of it. Gabe and Allison were supportive and amazing to work with. They made a very difficult and frustrating situation so much easier.
Which place or experience exceeded your expectations (or just surprised you)?
Morocco (and Rogue Expeditions)! I chose Morocco simply because the dates worked with my vacation time. I thought I’d enjoy the trip and I figured I’d do one trip and be done. I didn’t expect I’d fall in love with the Morocco or Rogue Expeditions. I’ve made lasting friendships (had 3 Rogue friends travel to Toronto to run my first marathon with me!) and countless memories. I’ve done 3 trips and am signed up for 2 more.
What’s the most important item that you pack?
Gabe and Allison have been running these trips for years now. They have the packing list perfect! I always bring exactly what they recommend. They haven’t steered me wrong yet. I’ve never been on a trip and thought I should have brought x y or z.
The one thing you shouldn’t leave home without is travel insurance. My cancelled trip due to weather was 100% covered by insurance. They recommend World Nomads who are incredibly reasonably priced and amazing to deal with. I hope you don’t have to use the insurance but life happens and it helps lessen the “pain”.