Competitors at the 2015 UltraTri Sweden swam 12k, biked 510k and ran 93k from the Swedish western coast to the Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, and while there was a winner, events like this are not so much about time, distance and placing. It is all about the experience, friendships and personal fulfillment and of course - experiencing beautiful places in this world.
Day 1: 9 km swim, 195 km bike
Day 2: 315 km bike
Day 3: 23 km run, 3 km swim, 70 km run
The magnificent 7 participants have no problem fitting on this tiny island. The island of Nidingen is a nature reserve and most of its inhabitants are birds. In older times there was always a keeper of the lighthouse on the island; the lighthouse though now now fully automatic.
The opening 2.5 miles of the swim towards the island of Malö feature difficult currents in completely open waters.
To ensure safety for all participants the organizers had 14 safety boats in place.
Once back on shore competitors head out on rolling terrain to cover the 195 km bike segment to Lake Vättern, and the weather gods approved.
No draft packs anywhere in sight, just stunning terrain and plenty of climbing totaling up to 1,800 meters of elevation gain.
Day 2 starts with more cycling, but less climbing is on schedule. Competitors have thus more time to appreciate the surroundings during this 315 km stretch.
The winds tent to be favorable on this day too, and that not only helps the cyclists.
Some of the roads are very narrow, but that adds on charm.
Over the water and onwards to the first run.
Competitors leave the small town of Trosa on day 3 of UltraTri for a 23 km run towards the days 3km swim.
Once out of the water athletes encounter a long stretch of hiking trails.
With directions in hand this athlete has a smile on his face as he is on the final 70 km running segment.
Balance and finesse are required on some of the narrow water bridges, but there are plenty of other opportunities to get wet feet.
The last 30 km of the run to Stockholm are mostly on asphalt, but there are some small dirt paths along the way.
When athletes finally reach the city, it is about 8km to go.
More beautiful scenery along the waterfront of Stockholm.
The final bridge to cross on the way to the finish in Rålambshovsparken.
A big hug after three very long days.
Erik Olsson covered UltraTri Sweden in 32 hours, 18 minutes and 55 seconds.
1. Erik Olsson 32:18:55
2. Olov Berg 33:17:50
3. Jonas Olsson 33:35:47
4. Håkan Terelius 34:04:04
5. Patrik Florén 36:47:21
6. Stefan Ericsson 36:58:09
7. Antonio Fonduca 51:22:16
Event website: ultratri.se and registration for the 2016 event opens September 1st.
Images © Daniel Gual Photography & Jenny Lindblom