I don’t actually remember being born, but I imagine it probably would have felt something like this.

It’s hot, dark and damp, and I’m covered from head to toe in a thick, gooey sludge. With sweat clouding my view, I’m sliding through a suffocating tunnel, crawling desperately towards a light which seems so very far away.

I’m desperate to gasp clean, crisp air, and my hair is stuck to my forehead in an unflattering blob of disgustingness. Claustrophobia is setting in as I will my knees and elbows to move faster; away from the stinky mire in which I fear I’ll drown and closer to what I am praying is the exit.

And then, suddenly, it’s over.

The tunnel plops me out into a disturbingly warm slurry of mud, and I devour the air as if it’s entering my lungs for the very first time.

Blinking in the splendid sunshine, I hear the over-excited cheers of my mates as I lift my weary body from the quagmire and wonder just how many kilometres of the Valley Stampede stand between me and an ice-cold beer.

This is by far the most fun I’ve had in a very long time.

When I signed up to do the inaugural Valley Stampede — a 5.3 kilometre dash through various obstacle courses at Glenworth Valley, just north of Sydney — I had no idea what actually awaited.

I knew there’d be mud and water and supposedly angry cows, but I had no inkling it would turn out to be one of the most fun Saturdays mornings in the history of ever.

Having a general soft spot for all things adventure, the Valley Stampede offered the chance to get a little bit dirty, have a half decent workout, and drink beer during the day whilst generally being feral.

But between electric shocks, hay bails, flying foxes, ice baths, giant slippery slides and mud buffets, it turned out to be even better than expected.

I could perhaps write about it some more, but I think the below video sums up the whole adventure quite nicely …

And, in addition to the fun above, the fact that 800 people (of the 6000-odd who stampeded) stayed on and camped at Glenworth Valley — partying into the wee hours, embracing the mud that was caught in every nook and cranny, trading tales around the campfire, and fending off the remarkably large possums that emerged after dark ­– will ensure that I’ll be back next year.

Most definitely.

Long live the Valley Stampede!

Claire’s a journalist, traveller and writer. This post first appeared on her blog.