Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Start to Finish: Badwater to Mt. Whitney

We hear Death Valley, and the first thing most of us think is "hot!" However, it is actually more than just "hot." It's obviously super hot in the summer months, but other aspects of the desert make this journey especially difficult.

Bill's goal is to cover 135 miles from Death Valley to Mt. Whitney, California, in the most demanding and extreme running/walking conditions "offered" anywhere on the planet. Badwater is the lowest elevation in the Western Hemisphere at 280 feet below sea level. Mt. Whitney Portal, where he plans to finish, is at ~ 8300 feet. Bill's trek will cover three mountain ranges for a total of ~ 13,000 feet of total vertical ascent and ~ 4,700 feet of cumulative descent.

As you can imagine, anything can happen along the way. Just getting to the starting line of this undertaking requires a mental fortitude that few possess. Add to that the desolation of the desert and the ability to see for miles and miles of what is ahead ... and you can maybe begin to comprehend the tremendous focus it takes to just keep going.

As you read this from the air-conditioned comfort of your home or office (and as I write this from my air-conditioned room), Bill is out there in the extreme heat pursuing a dream. That we are with him in "spirit" does actually help. So, let's continue to think of him and send him our positive energy as he makes his way across the desert.

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