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West Kelowna man is first to complete 315-kilometre run around Okanagan lake

Six pairs of shoes, $450. 12 pairs of socks, $20. Being the first known man to complete a run around Okanagan Lake, priceless.

After departing from Kelowna City Park on Friday morning at 8 a.m., Tim Dickinson returned from his nearly 64-hour run around Okanagan Lake on Sunday at 11:35 p.m.

Route map for Run The Lake 2018 by Bill Justus on

Bill Justus witnessed Dickinson, his friend and running mate, in the final moments of his 315-kilometre run as he hopped up and down over the finish line and into City Park just before midnight.

“He was hollering and cheering like a mad fool,” Justus said.

<who>Photo Credit: Facebook, Run the Lake 2018</who>

Dickinson was greeted by family, friends, high-fives and a pizza when he arrived in Kelowna’s City Park.

However, it wasn’t the celebration that Justus remembers vividly, but the almost surreal determination of Dickinson.

"They came out of Hardy Falls [Sunday night], over by Peachland . . . and he was still able to run a five-minute kilometre," said Bill, explaining that Peachland was nearing the end of the ultra-marathon.

<who>Photo Credit: Facebook, Run the Lake 2018</who>

"To put that in perspective for you, most people can't run a five-minute kilometre. I would say 95% cannot run one kilometre in 5-minutes and he was still cranking 5-minute kilometres after 280-kilometres on his legs,” laughed Bill about Dickinson.

“He's just an animal, like crazy, unbelievable. Mentally tough, because his body is done - like he was done at 150-kilometres I'll bet."

<who>Photo Credit: Facebook, Run the Lake 2018</who>

Justus is a long-distance runner himself with several ultra-marathons under his belt and experience in a variety of marathons.

"It was mind-boggling. I'm not a stranger to this and for me to watch somebody else - with the joy and exuberance that he had - put his body and his brain through this,” explained Justus.

"I'm speechless, I have no words to describe what I just witnessed."

Dickinson ran the ultra-marathon around the perimeter of lakes, only taking necessary breaks to catch some shut-eye and eat. Justus estimates Dickinson only slept about 13 hours, with a few naps “here and there.”

Dickinson planned to be back in Kelowna by 8 a.m. Sunday, but was interrupted by trail washouts, an overbalance of electrolytes causing fatigue and being lost in a forest after confusion with rendezvous areas - uncontrollable incidences, says Justus.

However, despite the setbacks, Justus said they experienced favourable weather.

The unreal trek didn’t come without its expenses though, explained Justus.

<who>Photo Credit: Facebook, Run the Lake 2018</who>

"His feet look like hamburger, he's got some pretty serious blisters, there's probably some [lost] toenails over this whole thing."

Dickinson hopes to host a celebration this upcoming weekend to celebrate the run and thank his supporters, 10 of which ran beside him to keep him company.

One runner, in particular, accompanied him for 80 kilometres in the dark of Okanagan Mountain Park while also carrying food and gear for the run.

Until the celebration, Justus assumes Dickinson will be resting up, stretching and refueling the body.

Even in his recovery, Justus said Dickinson isn’t opposed for a round-two next year, possibly even with other runners from the Okanagan.

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