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As Mudders wade downwards in a sloping pit of water toward the sight a towering vertical tube, all they can hear is the daunting sound of rushing water. Once inside the claustrophobic tube, Mudders will have to clamber up the inside while fighting against a constant downpour of water. Imagine climbing up a waterfall inside a mine shaft. We did, so we built it.
Named after the greedy, pudgy boy in Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, this water-based obstacle will have you wondering if you’ll be shot out of the tube like Augustus Gloop. Unfortunately, you’ll have to use your own willpower to overcome this obstacle. To start, swim through icy water and quickly immerse your head to be positioned underneath the vertical tube. Here’s where things get really wet: using grooves along the insides of the tube, climb your way up as water is being poured onto your head. Continue climbing until you reach the top of the vertical tube (and the source of the water; be prepared for an even fuller spray as you get closer). From here, carefully climb down the opposite side to complete this obstacle. You might be soaked, but at least you didn’t get stuck.
How to train: Once again, pull-ups are your best bet here, but any activity that tests your upper body strength will help. Having the hand-eye coordination to match your foot to hand as you climb up and out of the tube is helpful. As for dealing with the water…don’t look up. Be sure to watch the training video at the bottom of this post.
Harder than it sounds? We asked World’s Toughest Mudders Stefanie Bishop, Ryan Atkins, and Nickademus Hollon how they completed Augustus Gloop each lap:
Atkins: “Wedge your back against the side of the tube, and use the steps to walk up. Don't freak out...you'll be done soon enough.”
Bishop: “There are two ways to do this. Regardless of how you do it, you'll want to find the lowest notches when you enter the tube and get your feet in them. (They are usually underwater.) You can either face out or face the other column of notches. I think facing the notches is easier. You can then climb up like a ladder. The other way feels a bit more clumsy. You pull up a little in order to then stand up, move each foot and then your hands up a notch and repeat. Keep your head facing a little downwards to minimise the water hitting you in the face.”
Hollon: “Put your back against one wall and climb it like a ladder. Look down, not up, to avoid getting water in your face.”