SILVER PEAK — Lighting the way to McAfee Pass a waning moon led 21 locals the 10.7 miles that climb almost 3,000 feet to the top of the Silver Peak Range on their way from Fish Lake Valley to the Old School Saloon terminus 34 miles away in Silver Peak for the 22nd annual Silver Peak or Bust hike.
Cedric Kirby, formerly a four-year varsity football letterman for the Tonopah High School Muckers football team, led the way for the trek, finishing the course in nine hours and 35 minutes. Kirby was followed by Mirandy Cassidy, a Dyer School pre-school paraprofessional.
This fundraiser is funded by business and community sponsors for extracurricular school and youth activities not funded by taxpayer dollars.
Doug Kile followed the last participant in 13 hours, after dark. The husband-and-wife team, Joe and Lori Dunn were among those waiting at the finish line. They finished together several years ago crossing the finish line holding hands.
Cassidy is in her first year working with the pre-schoolers at Dyer. Her family and close relatives are long-time residents here. It was her first time doing the hike and she was second to finish.
Teachers Carissa and Josh Abbott, along with their children, Emily, Lily and Matthew also participated. Dyer School and Esmeralda VHS Academic School Officer Jasmine Simental and Matthew Melendrez, along with Aiden Cornforth, Jamie Sauer, Aiden Vaughn, Norma and Thiago Ibarra, Harley Brown, Manny De Luna, Terry Dudas and others from Esmeralda participated.
Cedric Kirby, a finisher and sponsor, is the owner of Cedric’s Conditioning situated at the corner of McCarran and Longview in Reno. He is the youngest son of Bill and Deb Kirby of Fish Lake Valley. He also played football for the Muckers on their state championship football team in 2007.
On Friday, Oct. 14, the wilderness course over the mountains was marked with white flour for directions and water drops. Winifred and Brian Sanderson, Bill and Deb Kirby, John Butterbredt and the Ibarra family, Joe and Lori Dunn, and Doug Kile, looked after the safety of the hikers.
The hike has paid for athletic sweatsuits, trips to Washington, D.C., school improvements and supplies, athletic and academic trips for lodging and meals and other student activities and needs. Donations can be made to the Esmeralda County School District at PO Box 129, Dyer, NV 89010.