The Lost Runner 

How a runner's obsession left him missing in the wilderness.

Page 7 of 7

John probably wound up costing the state at least $1,700 in search-and-rescue efforts — mostly for the helicopter, which contracts for $850 an hour, and was out for about two hours. He still runs a new trail every night at dusk. "I just sort of have a roaming spirit," he said.

A couple of weeks after the Snow Mountain imbroglio, Mintz was running at Whiskeytown Lake in Redding, right off of State Route 299. He set off around 8 or 9 p.m., which means the sun had already set by the beginning of his run. Mintz admitted he didn't know the area. "There was a trail," he said, "But if I would have kept going ..." His voice trailed off. "I guess some people just like to play with fire a little bit."

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