David Freeze: More challenges of running uphill to come

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 2, 2018

After hours of anticipation, I got to run my first leg of 7.5 miles, ending at about 6,000 feet.

As the seventh runner to hit the pavement out of 12 on our team, I looked forward to finally hitting the road. The scenery was beautiful as we crossed two dams and ran toward more snow-capped mountains. My next leg will climb over a thousand feet in about 4.8 miles and was to happen sometime in the middle of the night and top out at 7,200 feet.

Very early this morning, my last leg will begin in Virginia City, Nevada, of “Bonanza” fame. It will be much less challenging but still near the highest point of our journey.

Since I had never participated in a relay of this sort, I was amazed at more than 200 teams of all shapes and sizes with some of the most unusual names painted on vans and unusual outfits. Restroom lines are long and parking is almost impossible to find as we work our way along.

Members of our van’s team are Darryl Fisher, Mike Deines, Lindsay Columbo, Susan Bauman and Laura Wissert.

This is the 14th annual Reno Tahoe Odyssey.

After the folks on our van finish their runs, we will go off for several hours while the other van goes to work. One of our team members is Jonah Vandever, who had both legs amputated and is using a hand-driven bike. He is going to do the first and last stretch for the team.

Jonah’s story is told at his gofundme page, www.gogetfunding.com/legless-guy-needs-computer-knees/.

The temperature was expected to dip into the low 40s or upper 30s overnight while we are near the highest elevations. We expect to arrive back in Reno at the finish line between noon and 1 p.m. this afternoon.

Thanks for joining me on the beginning of the adventure. After the completion of the running event, I have some surprises planned for Sunday and Monday.