Kirk’s strength, as a runner, was tearing down the steep, rocky, rooty, dusty trails with confidence and speed. A fellow contender was quoted saying, "The way Kirk runs down those hills, he must be a demon." The “Dipsea Demon” moniker stuck. Kirk returned to the race each year through various stages in his life. When he worked in an oil refinery, he’d run the stairs on the property during breaks. When he worked as a garbage collector in Yosemite, he regularly ran to the top of Yosemite Falls…all in preparation for his beloved Dipsea. He’d bought a 400-acre ranch in Mariposa, where he collected old cars and lived without running water or electricity. Kirk was once arrested for shooting at trespassers on his property. He ran in circles around in his jail cell and was bailed out by fellow competitors race morning. He didn’t miss the Dipsea.