Death Valley Crossing to Support Homeless Children

$1,115 of $1,000 goal

Raised by 20 people in 2 months
Starting December 14th, I will walk across Death Valley, from the southernmost to the northernmost point, about 145 miles away. I will cross salt flats, sandy dunes, rocky dry-river beds and mountain washouts. Off-trail and unsupported, I will carry all the food, water and equipment I will need for the 8-day journey in a 90lb backpack. Just like carrying both my sons... all day! This journey has been successfully done only once (in the reverse direction) by Louis-Philippe Loncke, a Belgian explorer, adventurer and motivational speaker. A few others have tried, including me; all have failed, including me.

I am not an extreme explorer or adventurer like Louis-Philippe. I am a regular dad and small business owner. But I welcome a challenge. Years ago, a friend came back from a failed attempt to summit Mt Denali. I asked him what it’d take to do something this difficult and remote. He said that the first step is understanding that the people doing these incredible things are no different from the rest of us. It struck me as true and changed my outlook on outdoor adventures, as well as on other areas of my personal and professional life.

I have tried this journey before and failed three times. I learned from the problems I faced and the chances are good that I will accomplish my goal this year. But just in case, I want a little additional motivation to get me through to the end. I am asking my family and friends to help me raise money in support of the Mustard Seed School. After my journey is completed, the money raised will be donated in its entirety to help care for the children at the school. For me, it is an opportunity to pass along this spirit of adventure to those children, who have had a rough start in life. I am privileged in many ways and the challenges I impose on myself are nothing in comparison to the challenges they face on a daily basis. I hope to remind the students to dream about and focus on possibilities and reject the idea that their current situation is definitive.

Mustard Seed School  is part of Sacramento Loaves & Fishes  and it was established in 1989 to help meet the needs of homeless children. Many school age children do not attend school because of their homelessness; some lack immunizations, birth certificates, or other documents, some are in transit, and almost all lack a support system. In spite of their situations these children are eager to learn and to be accepted. Mustard Seed is a free, private school for children 3-15 years old which provides a safe, nurturing and structured environment, a positive learning experience, happy memories, survival resources of food, clothing and shelter referrals, medical and dental screenings, immunization updates, counseling for children and their parents, and assistance entering or reentering public schools. (A short video introduction about Mustard Seed here)

If you can help me support them, it’d mean a great deal to them and it’d would strengthen my will to finish this.

And you can track my location and progress real-time here:
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Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend an hour with about 20 of the children in the care of Mustard Seed School. We talked about the deserts, my trek and what to pack on an adventure. They were engaged and happy to contribute. We had a great time together. I can't imagine a better way of ending this adventure. Thank you all!
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I realized that I gave very little detailed about how my crossing went. So I posted a trip report of my trek on Explorerweb. Here is the link:


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Done! On Thursday the 3rd, after 7 days (6 days, 23 hours and 55 min), I reached the end point of my crossing. 164 miles according to my GPS and about 420,000 steps... It was a long demanding week, often windy and cold, always lonely and certainly very challenging for me both physically and mentally. Time for me to rest and enjoy some time with my family and friends.

Thank you all for your support! Happy New Year!
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A week ago, I failed. But I have a short window to try again and I will be back in Death Valley on the 27th. Maybe earlier. One more go. This time, North to South. We’ll see.

Same tracking page: https://share.garmin.com/RolandB

Let’s see what happens this time!

Merry Christmas, to all!
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$1,115 of $1,000 goal

Raised by 20 people in 2 months
Funds raised will benefit:
Sacramento Loaves And Fishes (Loaves & Fishes)
Certified Charity
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Sacramento, CA
EIN: 680189897
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Susan Hosek
1 month ago
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