Atacama Crossing Blogs 2023

Jerry Lemley



Atacama Crossing (2023) blog posts from Jerry Lemley

27 September 2023 10:00 pm (GMT-04:00) Santiago

 Hello everyone,
I am humbled and amazed at how many emails, prayers, and well wishes I am receiving from you all!  It’s working!  I made it to the Long March tomorrow!!!
Today was very difficult to begin and my tent mate, Chris, struggled.  He eventually dropped from the race.  The good news is we were so slow I arrived at Checkpoint 2 after they had already mandated the 2-hour rest before moving on.  Not too long after my arrival, they called the race due to heat.  I then got to wait at CP 2 for a vehicle to transport me back to camp.  Fun times driving across the desert with a guy who knows what he is doing in a 4 wheel drive Toyota!
Tomorrow is the Long March and I am hoping things go well.
I appreciate you all!!

Comments: Total (6) comments

Jennifer Ford

Posted On: 30 Sep 2023 02:40 am

Hi Brett! I just realized I could respond to your blog! 😂 You are doing amazing! We are so proud of you . The pics are amazing. Keep the trek going , brother! You are almost there. I'm so inspired by you ,not inspired enough to do something crazy like this, but inspired none the less. Can't wait to see you again and hear all about it. Love ya, The Fords

Jennifer Ford

Posted On: 30 Sep 2023 02:40 am

Hi Brett! I just realized I could respond to your blog! 😂 You are doing amazing! We are so proud of you . The pics are amazing. Keep the trek going , brother! You are almost there. I'm so inspired by you ,not inspired enough to do something crazy like this, but inspired none the less. Can't wait to see you again and hear all about it. Love ya, The Fords

Mary Gadams

Posted On: 29 Sep 2023 07:24 am

Hi Brett, you are all such heroes. The race conditions were so tough this year. I hope you managed to look up and take in the amazing scenery. It was a pleasure having you in the race. Take care, Mary

John Mason

Posted On: 28 Sep 2023 12:17 pm

Wow! Brett….was watching your progress yesterday (Stage 4) and Chris’ while at work…didn’t get much done as I could sense that it was a tough day to say the least….(the website updates every 10 mins and clearly you were putting your feet up with a beer by the pool for a little while!! Haha! So I was freaking out for a little while when your bib wasn’t moving)….glad you got the benefit of the ride to camp after they called it. I am truly in awe of what you are doing, the pics are mind blowing and most likely don’t capture most of what you are experiencing..hang in there, keep moving forward, you got this! You’re almost there my friend! Hugs from the Mason Fam!!

jason cox

Posted On: 28 Sep 2023 02:47 am

Wow, today sounds like it was quite the killer stage. The blogs being posted give quite a "Beauty and the Beast" description of today. Hopefully you can get some energy from today's setback. Like Mike the Situation also said, "The comeback is always better than the setback". For some reason I keep thinking of that Christmas show song "just put one foot in front of the other, and soon you'll be walking across the floor...". Your are doing great and everyone is proud of team Lemley!!

Stephanie Cox

Posted On: 28 Sep 2023 02:33 am

Hi Brett, sorry to hear about Chris. That must have been hard. What you guys are doing is incredible. I know you would have wanted to complete the stage overall but thankfully it was called and you had some extra time to rest up. Wahooo tomorrow is a big day and I know you can do it and can get energy and encouragement from your new friends there. Keep going ! You’ve got this. As the saying goes…. “ you didn’t come this far just to get this far…..”. mike the situation from Jersey Shore Steph

26 September 2023 08:59 pm (GMT-04:00) Santiago

Hello everyone!  Tough day today.  We were on the road for 10:22 today for 24 miles.  We started off innocently enough on a road.  Then we hit some sort of alien desert ankle breaking, pole grabbing terrain for about 10 miles.  Then to loose sand and granite for the rest of the way.  Climbing giant sand dunes only t gp down and climb again…..all in sand, fine sane, like powder.  My shoes were completely full most of the day.  My tent mate, Chris, and I teamed up with SJ and the three of us made it to the finish!

By the way…day three and everyone is starting to stink! 

Comments: Total (5) comments

Jason House

Posted On: 27 Sep 2023 04:41 pm

You got this! What an amazing adventure you are on. You have inspired me.

Chris Kovacs

Posted On: 27 Sep 2023 04:00 pm

Go Brett! We are headed home from Canada today. Kelly and i talked about you on our hikes... we missed you and Jodi... next time though. Keep up the grind buddy... proud of you!

Jonathon Mason

Posted On: 27 Sep 2023 03:22 pm

Brent ;) - you got this, keep pushing forward it's amazing to see your progress so far!! and what scenery!! I've been on here every day and tracked your bib number - glad I was finally able to figure out how to send you a ya big fella!! Keep it up - The Mason's!!

jason cox

Posted On: 27 Sep 2023 01:45 am

Hey Brett, Super fun to follow your progress today. We missed a little while on our flight but caught up soon. It looks like you really discovered your groove today. Maddy is our photo research and keeps finding cool pics (and vid) of you along your journey. Keep strong! everyone is proud of you!!

Stephanie Cox

Posted On: 27 Sep 2023 01:41 am

Hi Brett, Thanks for posting - I know you are so tired and we look forward to these notes. OMG…. What a day you had. It’s so interesting to read the descriptions of what you are walking through. There must be so many emotions as you go throughout the day. So glad to know you have others that you are all depending on and supporting each other. Interesting that people are starting to smell…. Was wondering about that. Anyone eyeing your Skippy peanut butter? Saw photos with some guys eating Raman noodles. Those bowls even if biodegradable would take up room! I guess you have mapped out each day before you arrived and then now being there is must be holy %*#&@*@& , not what you expected. I am in awe of what you are doing. So cool. Keep going and enjoy the views! Steph

25 September 2023 09:58 pm (GMT-04:00) Santiago

 Hey everyone! Thank you for the inspiring emails and thank you for following me! Today was amazing and amazingly difficult.  Everyone in camp came in about an hour or an hour and a half longer than their time from yesterday.  
I am a competitor and like to be the best so I came in TWO hours later than my time yesterday!  It took us 10 hours.  We crossed an ice cold river about 25 times, hiked through amazing sandstone canyons in the process, climbed to the top of to largest ridge around (the views were incredible!), and then we got to run down a 1000 foot tall sand dune - just like you see in the movies!  After the dune, we got to hike another 8 miles or so to camp - mostly through the same very fine and soft, shifty sand.
Needless to say the day was incredibly difficult but the things we saw and experienced are definitely bucket list items!!!
Hopefully I will have great news to report tomorrow.

Comments: Total (2) comments

Madeleine Cox

Posted On: 26 Sep 2023 07:27 pm

WOO!!! You are absolutely KILLING IT!! Keep up the awesome work. We are all rooting for ya! Day 2 seemed insanely intense, but hey.... you completed it! I hope today was a bit better. Even though the water you had to go through was freezing, I'm sure it honestly felt pretty good and refreshing. I'm looking at the pictures that they are posting and holy crap; that big sand dune that you had to run down, WOW! Also, the tunnel looked crazy to go through. While I write this comment, Day 3 is almost done for you soooo your half way done! Keep crushing it and just live in the moment. This is a once-in-a life time opportunity in an environment that nearly no one gets to experience. YOU GOT THIS!!!! Love you!!!

Jodi Lemley

Posted On: 26 Sep 2023 07:16 pm

You are doing GREAT!!! Keep the spirits got this! Tomorrow: the salt flats which will be incredible to see plus a few other fun stuff to see. Hope the altitude is treating you better, go rest and kick butt again tomorrow!. Love you!

24 September 2023 07:33 pm (GMT-04:00) Santiago

Hello everyone!

Heck of a day!  We started the morning with a steep downhill out of camp and into glorious desert landscape!!  Did I tell you our camp was at an altitude greater then 10,000 feet??  About halfway through the day the altitude stated getting to me.   Struggled for the rest of the day but one of. My tent mates helped me to the end.
Much harder than i anticipated!!!
But I am healthy and injury free, so mission accomplished!

Comments: Total (4) comments

Jodi Lemley

Posted On: 25 Sep 2023 09:46 pm

Way to go Brett!! You are an absolute BEAST! Todays stage (2) looked like it covered a great variety of terrain yet you confronted them head on and with gusto! Bravo!! It is absolutely incredible that you are doing this and I have no doubt you are contemplating life along the way...are you enlightened yet? Haha! We are so proud of you and cannot wait to hear about your time there and all of the incredible sights you've see and interesting people you've met. Rest up and hit tomorrow with a roundhouse kick! Haha! You got this!! Hugs and kiss. I love you!

Steohanie Cox

Posted On: 25 Sep 2023 08:45 pm

Hi Brett, What a great Day one and you soon will be resting after Day two! There will be so many stories I’d what you have seen and the people you have met. I’m so impressed with you taking on this challenge! Keep up the momentum and we are following and rooting you on. We are addicted to the website tracking you! Sending a big hug! Stephanie

Jason Cox

Posted On: 25 Sep 2023 08:42 pm

Hey Brett! Day two should be in the bag by now. We watched most of the first half today and must have been spectacular. Looking at the massive climb before checkpoint 3 looks like a killer way to end stage 2! Keep on keeping on!!!

Madeleine Cox

Posted On: 25 Sep 2023 06:32 pm

Hey Uncle Brett!! So good to hear from you! Day 1 is complete, and onto Day 2! You're in the middle of it right now, and you're absolutely crushing it! Day 1 sounds insane, but I'm sure it was an incredible sight to see. You mentioned how excited you were to see the stars and I bet they are even prettier than you could've ever imagine. I keep looking at the photos and videos that are being posted, and the scenery is just spectacular. An altitude of <10,000 ft?!? that's insane!! I'm so glad you were supported by your tent mates to keep you going! Supporting one another is the best way to get through this incredible opportunity. Can't wait to hear about day 2! Keep up the awesome work!!