Monkey Run January 2017 - The Rolling News

All the latest news and pictures from the ground on the first proper edition of The Monkey Run. 37 tiny bikes are weaving their way over the Atlas Mountains right now:

They're arriving thick and fast for the finish line shenanigans. 

Eight in so far. We have the Swedes and Monkey Junkie.
— Adventurist Kevin

That's at 1pm. Plenty of time for the rest to catch up. The best finish line quip so far:

MBJan17 - Day 8, %22Lost a game of chicken with a car. Not much skin left on knee.%22 From Sophie.jpeg
Lost a game of chicken with a car.

There's not much skin left on his knee says our source. 

7th January

It's Day 8 of the Monkey Run, and our runners are coming in for the finish: 

My name is Sheila and it’s been 7 days since my last drink.
— Sheila

We've got your back Sheila. 

6th January

This is almost impressive: 

I almost got my bike up to 70km/h.
— Bill

If that wasn't on a downhill. 

There's one day to go, this sounds like quite a good way to spend it: 

Coming in hot along the beaches tomorrow.
— Georg

6th January

It can't all be ski-lifts every day: 

Some total bawbagerry in the decision making from team Jocks Wha Hey led to an eventful Wednesday night.

Heading off road for a wee village over a mountain pass. Phrases like “nah it’ll be fine” and “I’m not stopping till we’re through the mountains “ even though it was dark when we set off led to us getting totally lost and we had to bivvy down at 1800 metres in sub zero temperatures to wait for daylight. Even then we managed to get further list on the way down, taking an even harder boulder streen route. It took us 5 hours to get off the mountain and find a road where we knew roughly where we were. And we got chased by dogs who grabbed the Scotland flag off my bike.
— Davie

It does look cosy:

6th January

What to do when you reach snow on a bike that can't handle sand?? Fly over it. 

That's the highest chairlift in Africa apparently. 3268m. We haven't got round to fact checking that yet, but Andrew sounds like he knows what's what. 

6th January

Tonight will be the Runner's last night on the road. What's the plan?

We’re going to sleep on the beach
— Bill


6th January

Our maps are shit and we got completely lost but we headed for Aoulouz. I can’t tell you the route we took because we still don’t know.
— Andrew

Andrew's got the right idea.

6th January

Looks like Sheila's engine troubles are behind her: 

Nothing like starting the day with a new engine purring away.
— Sheila, of Sheil's Wheels

Good news. 

5th January

View from the back of the truck heading up the mountain.
— Bill

You call it a view, we call it cheating. 

5th January

Bill's at the mechanic. What did he think? 

There’s nothing wrong with it. It’s just made for Chinese children.
— Moroccan Mechanic

That's settled then. 

5th January

Broken down? No problem, there are a fair few mechanics in Morocco:

5th January

It's been a quiet day so far. We're not the only ones to notice: 

Where is everyone today? We are still cocking around in the mountains.
— Håvard

We'll see them all on Saturday for the finish party. 

4th January

Vying for photo of the day - we have three excellent candidates: 

Have we mentioned lately there are seats in January 2018? While stocks last. One of them could be yours:

4th January

The Runners are raising their photo game for Day 4:

Double river crossing, stalled in centre island and spent half and hour trying to kickstart my bike on a patch of pebbles.
— Anton

Well at least you came out with a picture.

January 4th

“There are monkey bikes in that picture, I promise.”
— Runner Håvard


4th January

As Day 4 comes to a close, Bill and Sheila are travelling together, but are having a mixed journey so far:

4th January

A submission from runner Phillippa:

Nope, no idea what's happening here. 

3rd January

It's all tows. But at least it looks quite fun.

3rd January

Some fresh photos from the field. 

It seems our runners are big fans of their bikes. 

3rd January

I can’t believe the dirt doesn’t stick to the glamour.
— Sheila's Wheels

This is Sheila. Just for the visual:

3rd January

George is one of those positive sorts: 

If your fuel line leaks - you can warm your hands!”
— George

That's the spirit. 

3rd January 2017

Swede Peter has been documenting his run so far - and doing a rather fine job of it too:

2nd January 2017

Some fantastic shots of launch shenanigans from our Monkey Run crew and in-house photographer Sophie Bolesworth:

2nd January 2017

Someone's having engine trouble already:

New Engine being fitted on the 2nd day. These bikes ain’t the best.
— Graeme

True to our word then. 

2nd January 2017

Altitude of 2728m today. 2ft snow blocking the way to the dades.
— Jack, Dave, Dave and Charlie

Setting the bar quite high straight out the gate. 

We're following the Monkey Run on Instagram. You can too: 

1st January

They're barely over the horizon, and we've already had this back from the field:

Got to use my tow rope today!
— Bill

First day went well? 

1st January

Get the full Launch Report from our man Kev:

31st December 2016

A big thanks to our chums and sponsors at Minirig. A damn fine set of speakers. 

31st December 2016, 13.28

Meet Bill: 

He's a Pirate of the Sahara. 

31st December 2016, 13.26pm

As good a time as any to chat routes. Here's He-Man Hunters considering their options:


A word from our man on the ground: 

They are looking at Algeria right now. They haven’t got a clue.
— Adventurist Kevin

Keep it up lads. It'll be fine probably. 

31st December 2016, 13.04pm

They've had the bikes for four minutes, and the duct tape is out already: 

That's Davey from team Jockswahey.

31st December 2016, 12.17pm

Bike briefing has begun. Here's what that looks like: 

"Not before they all splooged too soon and started using them 2 minutes after they were told not to."

Good stuff. 

31st December 2016, 11.04

Might get The Call while I’m out in the desert. My wife’s due in 2 weeks.
— Jack from Monkey Junkie

How does she feel about you coming out we asked? 

I booked this before we knew so....
— Jack

Mrs Jack is a forgiving lady. 

December 31st, 11.30am

It seems some of this batch of Monkey Bikes, indicate the opposite way you want them to. Indicate left, and the right light comes on. 

Anything we can do to help the Adventure. 

December 31st 2016, 11.02am

Kev is taking an egg across Maroc. 

He reckons he'll get it there, and plans to eat it at the finish line. 

31st December, 10.49am

This exchange bodes well: 

Jack - your arse is where your bag is supposed to go.
— Dave to Jack
It’d help if I had ever sat on a motorbike before.
— Jack to Dave

Monkey Junkie look like they'll be quite a good team to follow. 

31st December 2016, 10.37am

An observation from the field: 

There are so many tall people here.
— Charlie from Monkey Junkie

It's the tall people that have the most fun on these machines. As well as adventuring, they get to test new ways of folding their limbs. 

31st December 2016, 10.07 am

Kevin from Fez Angels isn't having the best start. 

We’ll have to take the Fez Angels patch off when we get home.... we were told it’s not cool. It might upset the Hells Angels.
— Kevin from Fez Angels

You never know, they might see it for the compliement it is. 

31st December 2016 - 10.01am

Kevin has turned up sans luggage. He's wearing all white, a djellaba and a fez. Easyjet lost his luggage. 

He doesn't seem too fussed. After all, he's got the essentials on him. Less to carry, eh Kevin? 

We're covering the Monkey Run on The Adventurists Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.