Sunday, 23 January 2011

The Gurkha Trials

Nepal is not only famous for its incredible mountains, climbing and hiking but also for the incredibly tough and able troops they produce for the Gurkha regiment of the British Army; often recognised for their famous knives and wide rimmed hats. These Nepalese men have fought for the British Army across the world and are famed for their toughness and incredible fitness and determination; Prince Harry famously served with them whilst he was secretly in Afghanistan.

Gurkha hopefuls preparing for their final test. Photograph courtesy of The Times 

The Times Newspaper recently wrote about the incredibly hard test these young Nepalese men undertake to become Gurkha soldiers in the British Army regiment. Over 11,500 men apply for only 176 places in the British Army and 80 in the Singapore Police. The Doko Race is part of the final tests for these young men to become Gurkhas - they run 3 miles in hilly terrain with 25kg packs (shown in the picture above); this must be completed in 48 minutes in order to pass on to final testing and become a fully fledged Gurkha! The training is carried out near the beautiful Pokhora, a place I thoroughly enjoyed on my trip to Nepal, and are overlooked by the Annapurna mountain range.

As the article points out the wage received by Gurkhas per month is several times the average annual incomes of Nepalese people - they earn a good wage and become a part of one of the most famous Army regiments in the world, as well as one of the most capable! These men are absolute machines and once in the regiment embark on an incredible adventure.

2 comments:

  1. Took part in the UK Trailwalker last year http://www.oxfam.org.uk/trailwalker It's organised and ran between the Ghurka Welfare Trust and Oxfam. The Ghurka's do an incredible job and make the event a lot of fun. Took my team 24hrs, the winning Ghurka team ran it all in 9hrs something, in full combat gear. Lot of love for the Ghurka's and there mid point curry is epic.

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  2. Wow that's seriously impressive - they're fitness is on the next level to anyone else it seems!

    Thanks for commenting!

    Tom

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