While I've been mostly occupied with the Raid the North Extreme this week, another event was taking place in Europe that is definitely worth a mention as well. That's where the Red Bull X-Alps 2011 was taking place, which is a very unique race that is a demanding test of endurance, skill, and nerve as well.
For those who haven't heard of it before, and I'm one of them, the X-Alps is an event that pits endurance athletes on a non-stop race through the Alps, starting in Salzburg, Austria and ending in Monaco. Participants in the competition, and there were 31 of them, must travel either on foot or by paraglider. Yep, you read that right, foot or paraglider. So, as a result, you have athletes running through the mountains, carrying their paragliding gear with them, while also scrambling to higher heights, so that they can launch themselves into the air and use their gliders to make progress.
The race got underway on Sunday, July 17th, and yesterday the first competitor crossed the finish line. That was Swiss athlete Christian Maurer who managed to glide the final 60km (37. miles) to the finish and land on a floating platform especially created for the event.
The rest of the competitors are expected to filter in between now and tomorrow, bringing a close to the race for 2011.
To find out more about the event, and see Maurer's winning ride, check out the video below.