"Glimpse of Heaven" comes with a price | TahoeDailyTribune.com

"Glimpse of Heaven" comes with a price

Susan Wood, Tahoe Daily Tribune

Misty Gaswint plans to run a 30-mile trail run billed as “A Glimpse of Heaven, A Taste of Hell” Saturday with bible scripture in mind.

“Let us run the race with perseverance set before us,” Gaswint quoted Thursday from Hebrews.

The 47-year-old Meyers woman said this is how she often gets the physical and mental strength to accomplish these kinds of goals.

For the Tahoe Mountain Milers 50K, she’ll also get some help from the scenery. The 50-kilometer and 50-mile courses will be held on the Tahoe Rim Trail, starting and ending at Spooner Lake State Park at 7,000 feet. The event, attracting nearly 300 people this year, is co-hosted by the Sagebrush Stompers Running Club.

The runners climb to Snow Valley Peak at 9,214 feet.

“Looking at God’s beauty, this is incredible that we live here. It just sets me free,” she said.

Gaswint has run for 15 years, choosing the activity as her primary sport because it helps her escape “everyday cares.” She’s run four marathons, two of which meandered in the redwoods of Humboldt County.

To train for elevation gains, she’s also participated in the Double Dipsea, a route that climbs Mount Tamalpais in Marin County twice.

Many of the events turn into mini reunions.

Even though Gaswint lets her mind wander when she runs, she enjoys the camaraderie and companionship of the sport. Sometimes she and her friend Gabrielle Pereira will chat for four hours while they’re running, Gaswint said.

And she’s never been seriously lost, just sidetracked.

She and Pereira ended up on top of Luther Pass when they took a wrong turn from Horsethief Canyon Road. Pereirra called her sister on the cell phone to pick them up.

Gaswint cross trains on her mountain bike and jogs the Power Line and Saxon Creek trails with her 2-year-old Australian Shepherd, Clancy. He started running with her when he was six months old. She covered 18 miles of the Rim Trail on a recent training run with the Mountain Milers, the club host that formed in 1995.

“It was tough because I was stopping on my training run with my camera to take pictures,” she said.

The experience this weekend is up Gaswint’s alley, as she prefers running on trails and running a housekeeping business to set her own hours.

“I so much prefer trail running to pavement. It’s easier on the joints, you don’t have the traffic, and it’s more scenic,” she said.

Gaswint expects the course will take eight hours at the most to complete, but who’s counting?

“I’m there not to set a record. I just want to finish it,” she said.

John Hancock of Sacramento pulled in the best time last year for the 50K, coming in a little less than five hours. Finishing in six hours was South Shore resident Avril Harcourt. Other South Lake Tahoe runners John Edgar and Carol Rapacz came in just under eight hours and nine hours, respectively.

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