vol state 24 hour update

quiet desperation

you can’t quite say the sun has risen on the most crucial day of the vol state.
there is light,
but a layer of fog envelops a world
where dew point and ambient temperature have switched their normal places.
the runners’ world seems to be wrapped in a hot wool blanket.
90 degrees at 0700 is a hell of a start
to a day that promises hell.
when the sun does burn through the low ceiling of pure humidity (only at 94%) they can expect a scorching sun feeding what is expected to be 108 degrees by afternoon,
this is life on the broil setting.
this is the cruxial day
especially for what remains of the 81 virgins.
24 hours on the road.
and the will to continue is under assault.
everyone moved well last night
but even the leaders have more than 200 miles to go.
even before it burns thru
the sun can be felt
reaching down like the day has been set on broil.
as fast as the vol staters can pour fluids in
the fluids are pouring out thru the skin.
as the body tries desperately to cool itself
feet hurt
eyes narrowed to slits
the vol staters shuffle along.
today will try their souls.
thoughts of the rock no longer play in their minds.
there is no finish.
this is about survival.
just to reach the next town or village.
get to gleason.
make it to mckenzie
parkers crossroads.
maybe there you can go inside a store
stop for breakfast.
experience a few minutes of air conditioning.
but on the other side of each one
is a vast expanse of wilderness.
endless miles of open road
and another city
off in the hopeless distance.
the rock?
no, the only goal now is survival.
today is the biggest test.
escape is only a phone call away.
the finish…
beyond the boundaries of the imagination.
looking ahead
when the atmosphere fills with this much humidity and heat
it becomes a ticking time bomb.
when the energy becomes too much to contain
the skies will rend apart in violent thunderstorms.
the forecast starting by tonight:
explosive electrical storms with hail and damaging winds.,
god help the vol staters.
we are preparing a van load to go to the rock.
this will not be the last.
up front,
where (increcibly) they are not just trying to survive,
but to compete under these conditions
varnadoe saw his lead over zimac dwindle to 2 miles overnight.
hearn is still 10 miles back.
even from there he has to be the dominant player at this stage.even wounded the old lion commands respect.
his prowess is a proven commodity.
noren has fallen another 10 miles off the pace.
but there might have been a rest break involved.
today is going to be revealing at the front.
not until everyone has taken the first break will we have a clear picture of where they stand.
the trailing pack
hoping to pick off the leaders on down the road
is not as cohesive as it was.
it is beginning to crumble
and soon pieces will start to come off.
for now there are still about 10 of them lurking within 10 miles behind the leaders.
and so begins day 2.
a day of desperation and despair on the road.

Categories: Vols2023