Part of Michael Hodson’s sick and twisted sense of humor involved making his ‘minions’ do bonus competitions during the Train Challenge.

Is he nuts? Or am I, for signing up for this? My overall goal is to kick his arse. So dear readers, if you can offer advice or help me keep track of this list as I go ape on a bunch of trains across Europe, Russia, China and Vietnam.

We’ll see how I stack up against Hodson and Ms. Dunn.

Scavenger Hunt:

  • Photo of Russian train attendant giving you a hug or kiss.
  • Photo of you with someone in a military or police uniform
  • Ticket to a museum.
  • Karoyke video
  • Video of you doing shots of alcohol with Russians on a train.
  • Video of you dancing a local/native dance with a local.
  • Menu printed in foreign language — multiples count in other languages/countries.
  • Hospital gown.
  • Business card from some government official — bonus for accompanying picture.
  • Picture of you in train engine car.
  • Bottle of French, German or Italian wine, bought in one of those countries.
  • Photos of you in funny hats, different locations, bonus for actual hat at finish line.
  • Pictures of cans of Coca-Cola in multiple languages.
  • Picture with a bride.
  • Picture of you riding an animal.
  • Russian nesting dolls — babushka dolls.
  • Postcard (points for every country you get).
  • Photos with locals eating meals in their home.
Part of the Ultimate Train Challenge is our commitment to raising $10,000 for charity, by partnering with the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation and the Da Nang Association of Agent Orange Victims. Each dollar will go directly to children at the center near Da Nang who suffer from the effects of Agent Orange to this day. You can help donate by purchasing Eurail tickets through my website or donate directly by going through the Ultimate Train Challenge site. I’d like to thank our European sponsor, Eurail for supporting this important cause.
Photo: Ryan Ruppe