Sunday, May 9, 2010


Sharon started the Death Valley Walk for Life ten years ago when she decided she wanted to conquer her fear of being alone overnight in the desert. Five years ago she got cancer and turned her walk into a chance to raise money for cancer treatments for those that live in the valley.

The next year she was too sick to walk the distance so six of her co-workers walked it for her. Since then it has grown and this year there were 61 walkers. The money is used to help those with cancer because most of them have to travel to Las Vegas for treatment which is very expensive.

We arrived in time to help Sharon with the Walk which was a wonderful experience for us. Since the 1/2 mile walk to the Natural Bridge almost killed us, we knew that we weren't going to be doing any walking this year. So we pitched in wherever we were needed.

I helped peel oranges (lots and lots of oranges) because they freeze the sections for the walkers to eat while they are walking through the heat. We also put together snack bags for them. Jim helped set up the campsite out at the Furnace Creek Campground.

They held a golf tournament and a fishing tournament (bet you can't guess who helped at that one).

On Saturday morning the walkers headed out - to walk 24 miles from Furnance Creek to Stovepipe Wells. A great portion of the road is uphill and remember this is Death Valley. Saturday was a great day weather wise. They walk 12 miles the first day and then are given a ride back to camp where the spa was open for them to have foot massages. Dinner was also provided. Then the next morning they were returned to their ending point and they finished the final 12 miles. Sunday was windy and sand was blowing everywhere.

But most of the walkers pressed on. Some of the children couldn't go any further and a few of the walkers couldn't finish out the day. But even to have walked a mile in the desert is amazing to me.

What a fabulous experience this was and I'm hoping we can return next year to help Sharon once again. I also am hoping that I will be able to walk a mile with them. That's my challenge.

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