Contestants carry wives through obstacle course

Tuesday, October 9, 2012 - 8:34pm

In case of an emergency, could you carry your spouse? How about carrying her over a log, up a hill, through a mudhole, and over a sand hill? It's the North American Wife Carrying Championship held at the Sunday River ski resort in Maine. Though there are a couple of newlyweds, you don't actually have to be married. You can pretty much carry or drop anyone.

Though there's always a piggybacker or two, almost everyone uses what's called the "Estonian carry," where the woman wraps her legs around the man's neck. Apart from hanging on upside down, the woman being carried doesn't really have to do much of anything.

At the wife carrying world championships in Finland, the water obstacle is deeper and the women sometimes have to hold their breath. Here at the north american competition, it's the mud that's the enemy. In fact, the mud pond is called "the widowmaker." 

Wife carrying originated in Finland, and two Finns won the contest in just under 53 seconds to complete the almost 3 football field long course.

Ntaisto Miettinen and and Kristiina Haapanen were already the 4-time world champs of wife carrying and no, she's not his wife. He's a lawyer; she's a nanny. They won the first place prize of 5 times the female's weight in beer and 5 times her weight in cash. Since Kristiina weighs in at 106 pounds, she won 530 dollars and pounds of beer.

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