The much-loved ultra race director Lazarus Lake was in Conneaut, Ohio yesterday, as his cross-country walking trek from Rhode Island to Oregon continues.
The Ashtabula, Ohio Star Beacon reported that Lake (whose real name is Gary Cantrell) was in good form, even if slightly behind schedule, as he followed route 20 through the state. He’s averaging about 27 miles (a little over marathon distance, or 43.2K) per day.
An long-retired but accomplished ultrarunner himself, Lake is the race director of the Barkley Marathons, the infamous 100-mile trail ultra in Tennessee’s Frozen Head State Park that features 18,000m of elevation gain, and that only 15 people have finished in its 33-year history. (There were no finishers this year.)
The trip, which Lake has been dreaming of for a long time, started in Rhode Island on May 10. He first walked east to Boston, then turned west, following the Boston Marathon route in reverse, then into New York State, Pennsylvania, and now Ohio, kept company by runners at various whistle stops along the route.
The Star Beacon remarked on Lake’s smoking habit, a definite anomaly among runners. In response, Lake crowed that he took up running and smoking on the same day.
At one point he boasted of being thrown out of a Wal-Mart when he tried to use the washroom.
Laz's #lazcon mission is pretty damn impressive for an old guy who smokes and can no longer run. It's been fun to follow long thus far as he averages about 27 miles a day while walking across the U.S. https://t.co/WS7q54H707
— Gary Robbins (@gary_robbins) June 6, 2018
We’ll continue to check in and report on Lake’s progress from time to time as his journey continues.