Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Running through Death Valley 

The doc. film Running on the Sun is about an annual 135-mile race beginning 282 feet below sea level at Badwater in Death Valley National Park and ending 8,360 feet up Mt. Whitney. In the book To the Edge, a NY Times report named Kirk Johnson wrote his account of training for and completing the event. If you complete the thing in 48 hours, you get a belt buckle. The men's record is a little over 25 hours, just under 28 hours for the women. In 2002 and 2003, the overall event was won by Pam Reed, the women's record holder.

Among many other observations, watching this film (and to a less visual extent, reading the book) gives one a distinct appreciation for foot care. I've never seen such large blisters.

Apropos plants detecting land mines, that would have come in handy for Badwater finisher Chris Moon, who lost most of his right leg and arm while working for an NGO clearing landmines in Mozambique. He was running to raise money for a charity working with mine survivors.
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