Monday, April 14, 2014

Long distance hiking/ ultra running/ fastpacking clinic PART 1

Here is part one of a one hour presentation I did at work for my co workers on Long distance hiking/ ultra running/ fastpacking.  This is part of a series of clinics put on at my work to help employees understand the sports our clothing may be used for and what makes their designs either appropriate or not for those pursuits.  I apologize in advance for the lighting, my video camera doesn't handle indoor lighting well.

Since I am not able to put external links in the YouTube video I have provided links below to many of the topics covered in this part of the clinic.  Of course if I missed something or you have further questions please comment and I will do my best to get back to you.

The Long Trail was my first thru hike and it was cool that it just so happens to also be Americas first long distance trail.  I also had the opportunity to work on the Long Trail as a ridgerunner while living in Vermont.

one of my duties as a ridge runner on the Long Trail was to maintain self composting toilets

Here is a link to my gear list back when I thought 15lbs was wicked light.

My AZT speed record was my first attempt at fastpacking.
Then I attempted the PCT.
So I had to try again.
2010 was my first walk to highlight the impacts of bringing green energy to market.  Later that year I set the unsupported Tahoe Rim Trail record.
2011 I went back and claimed my AZT record with a hybrid of unsupported running and backpacking.  I then went and walked the Grand Enchantment Trail setting the unsupported record on that trail.  Upon returning home I entered my first ultra and won.
2012 I biked, hiked and paddled to the Bering Sea from my front door.

Long Distance Trails

Long Trail
Appalachian Trail
Pacific Crest Trail

Check out my buddy Old Shools walk on the PCT in 1974 here.

Here is a link to the Flex Trek Video.  It would also appear that there is another newer model out called the Whip Snake!

Ultra light backpacking definition on Wikipedia.

Ray Jardine is the grandfather of Ultra Light Hiking.  I highly recommend his book too.

Grandma Gatewood is the earliest example of ultra light hiking.

Check out info on the fabrics here.

The 2010 Western States had an epic showdown between Anton Krupicka, Killian Jornet and Jeff Roes.  Check out their respective blogs here:

Tony Krupicka
Killian Jornet
Geoff Roes

What exactly is Ultra Running?

Killian Jornet has set speed records right here in my own backyard on the Tahoe Rim Trail.  You can check out his record on FKT here.

Andrew Thompsons record on the Appalachian Trail was an early inspiration to me.  At some point I ended up with a copy of an old Ultra Runner Magazine that Andrew wrote an article for detailing his supported AT record.  Andrews record was also approached in a very simple way which no doubt contributed to his success.  Jennifer Pharr Davis who broke Andrews record did so in a very similiar fashion.  Their approach involved one dedicated support person and vehicle.  As well as their camps where always situated very close to the trailhead so that little time was spent off trail. 

Jennifer Pharr Davis stepped into the record books in style by unseating Thompsons long standing record on the Appalachian Trail.  Jennifer Pharr Davis also holds the unsupported record on that trail.  Jennifer Pharr Davis also happens to be the first woman to unseat a mans record!  For those that may not know, the Pacific Crest Trail is the I-5 of long distance trails.  The Appalachian Trail however, happens to be some of the roughest footing I have ever experienced.  So these records out east covering this kind of daily mileage makes my old PCT record look like a walk in the park.  On top of that, Andrews record was so strong that if you weren't covering a certain mileage the first week you might as well give up.  On the AT there is no way to make up lost time.

Want to have some fun now?  Enter the raffle below for some sweet prizes!  There will be 3 winners and you may increase your chance of winning by liking the FSTPKR facebook page, following on twitter and tweeting the giveaway.  This raffle is only for US residents as I can't absorb the cost of international shipping, duties and taxes.  I will have one raffle for each of these 3 posts on the Long distance hiking, ultra running and fastpacking clinics.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. sounds like karl's going to give the AT another try this year.

  2. Right on Kevin! Thanks for the heads up on that!