I’m 70 miles into the iconic 200 mile race, the Tahoe 200. It’s been a hell of a journey to be here and I’m excited to be running in this awesome location. But somethings not been right all race, I’m simply exhausted with every movement and even though I’ve already climbed over 11’000 ft of vertical gain I feel like my legs are on fire. My lungs are bursting out of my chest and I’m gasping and wheezing like nothing I’ve experienced before. As I contemplate my next steps up the mountain climb I feel really cold, the wind picks up and it starts to snow. As I wipe the flurry of flakes out of my eyes I was now face to face with the reality I might actually being about to DNF (Did Not Finish).
It was a tough year for many, there was a lot of talk about post-covid issues amongst many runners and of course a lot of altitude issues and “Tahoe Tuberculosis”, a hacking cough developed by most runners due to the dusty conditions on the trails every year, made worse this year with drought conditions and an extremely high pollen count. 240 runners started with 101 who DNF’d, a whopping 42% DNF rate, the highest in the races 8 years history.
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