To get this done, I got a really early start. Jared and I were heading down S.Kaibab a little after sunrise. A beautiful sight to say the least. As we made good time down the trail, we came to Cedar Ridge and noticed a lady lying in the middle of the trail covered in a mylar blanket. We stopped and asked her what was going on. Apparently, she was heading down and broke her ankle. At this point, no one was going to get help, so we ran pretty hard back up to the top and Jared called the rangers.
After a few minutes of laying out the situation, Jared hung up the phone.. and behind us stood a ranger. Now that is service!!!.. I was amazed at how quickly he had shown up. He told us he would take it from here.. so we began to retrace our steps down S.Kaibab.. Once again, we came upon the lady. She was AMAZINGLY calm.. maybe she was in shock..??.. but she was unbelievably relaxed and polite.
After informing her that the Ranger would be there in a matter of minutes, we decided to run to Tonto and back to the Rim as I still had to get to back to work.
We hammered our way back up the switchbacks making great time. As we closed in on Cedar Ridge, a chopper was landing to pick up the injured hiker. Apparently, she had a full blown broken ankle and needed immediate medical attention. Once the helicopter left, we finished the run.
At the end of our run, we both had a sense of satisfaction that we were able to lend someone a hand when they really needed it.
Saturday Run – A few weeks ago, I decided that I wasn’t going to race the Zane Grey 50miler. As such, I offered to pace one of my buddies, Brian Tinder. A very deep field was scheduled to run, so I was really excited to see him mix it up with some of the Ultra World’s top athletes.
The plan was to hook up with Brian at the mile 33 aid station. From that point, we would hammer our way through to the finish.
Brian rolled into the aid station a few minutes slower than he had originally expected, but he looked really good. Spirits were high and I thought he was ready to close the race out strong.
We were making good time through the first 3miles from the Aid Station… then Brian hunkered over and started making this horrible, deep gut, throw-up sound.. but nothing was coming out. Brian had a case of the dry-heaves. The temperature was hovering around 90degrees and it was SUPER dry. Rut-roh.
He tried everything.. water, gels, etc.. but nothing seemed to help him, so with about 7miles to go, we went into a full-blown walk just trying to get to the next aid station. For a while, I tried to be encouraging.. but having been in bad places before, I didn’t want to be annoying, so I just shut my mouth for a while.
Once we started hitting the really exposed areas, we talked our way through it.. Brian was still stopping pretty regularly to dry-heave.. and I am feeling pretty damn worthless.. because there is nothing that I can do, but… be there.
We finally got to mile 43, and Brian decided that was enough. I know he made the right decision.. Live to fight another day.
My wife & kids were waiting at the finish, so I went ahead and ran the final 7miles, which was actually pretty enjoyable. It allowed me to reflect a bit on the weekend.. and how rewarding it was.… Not because of the miles covered, but due to the feeling of lending a hand to a lady in need.. and to be with a friend when he needed me.