What do sportsmen gossip about? What to take in your hands and where to go if you’re full of forces? After which kilometer do smiles disappear? And how to celebrate a self-conquest?

We discussed for a long time among Sporter runners about “scaling”the highest mountain in the Moldova – Bălănești Hill. Its height is 428 meters above sea level. And finally, in May 2014, we decided to do this. The event was organized by the brothers Croitoru Liviu and Bodesku Octavian. Octavian was born in Milesti, near this mountain, and this race was his childhood dream. Now his dream came true …

The Nisporeni – Bălănești half marathon takes 21 km, the climb – 420 m, the average gradient – about 2%. One of the features of the route is a sharp rise, beginning with 12 km and the last 2 km is a trail run in the woods!

We were 9 – all members of Sporter Club, with different backgrounds, but with the same burning eyes and a desire to prove ourselves.

Start!

The first 13 kilometres were beautiful. There was a great weather, smooth road and a wonderful company. On the way we met some locals. They seemed surprised to watch such strange guys in tight clothes, running down the highway.

One old man even offered us to take the hoes and to work in the field, once we have too much force :)

After the 14th kilometer began the hills and, thereafter, the smile vanished from our faces. It was difficult. No, not that … sometimes it was very fucking difficult, but we came here for it – we came to suffer.

The last 2 kilometres we ran through the forest, guided by the relief and car honks. Got into mud, were dirty and tired as hell, but still ran out on top!

Here we are, on top of Moldova, waving flags and eating the best delicacy after a mountain half marathon – ice cream!

We stayed on the top for half an hour, ate ice cream, chatted and went down to the village. There, in the church of the Milesti village, we were served with a delicious shourpa. It was right in time, thank you!

During the event we felt like we were in a different Moldova, with other people, other relief and another atmosphere. It was very cool and unusual!