My legs felt like they would fall off at any moment, my mind was drunk on a cocktail of elevation and dehydration, and my feet screamed from dozens of miles on loose granite. I hate hyperbole, but I’m not exaggerating here: Climbing up the switchbacks to Toxaway Pass was a sadistic way to spend a Sunday afternoon.
Generally speaking, when I feel anywhere close this shitty, I turn around, tuck my tail between my legs, and drink beer. But sometimes you need to keep marching forward just to see how close you can get to the line. And, frankly, I wouldn’t be writing about our 45-mile run across the Sawtooth Range if we phoned it in early, either.
As an outdoor gear writer with a bad habit of saying yes to strangers, I’ve found myself up shit creek more than I’ll admit to anyone. But this offer felt different—like maybe…