This year BAMRU continued the tradition of staffing a team for the medical aid station at mile 85 of the Western States Endurance Run. Seven members volunteered to stay up all night to help ensure the safety and well being of the runners who had made it to that point of one of the most difficult 100 mile courses in the country.
The runners start in Squaw Valley, California and have a 30 hour cut off time to make it the grueling 100.2 miles to Placer High School in Auburn. Some years snow has altered the course, but this year heat was one of the main obstacles. Some of the valleys reached over 100 degrees on race day.
BAMRU's medical crew was responsible for assessing each runner as they passed through the station to make sure they weren't showing signs of what can be dangerous electrolyte imbalances. In addition, we also did a lot of shoe patching, blister care and basic first aid. We were prepared to run up or down the trail to assist any runner in need of aid and even prepared to perform carry outs or evacuations that required the use of our litter and wheel. Fortunately, none of the runners needed this kind of assistance.
We had a great night, met some wonderful volunteers and were inspired by the perseverance and endurance of the runners.
Photos courtesy of Chris Seffens and Ben Yaffe: