Running in Death Valley on the hottest day of the year is nuts. Running in Death Valley on the hottest day of the year dressed as Darth Vader is insanely nuts. This is what a man named Jon Rice does every year in the hopes of challenging himself and “bringing a tiny little bit of wonder back into someone's life.” The 52-year-old calls it his “Darth Valley” run and this year, he ran the mile in scorching 128-degree heat.
Rice says he’s been running through Death Valley since 1997 and trains for the one-man event by jogging through his Santa Fe neighborhood and exercising in his 150-degree sauna. He says he finds the event exhausting and exhilarating but doesn’t recommend anyone join him on this quest. "I don't agree with anybody else doing this," he said, adding, "I don't even really agree with me doing this, particularly."