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AT Speed Record Attempt
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(cuzzettj) - MLife

Locale: NorCal - South Bay
"AT Speed Record Attempt" on 08/08/2008 16:23:15 MDT Print View

I to didn't realize the Olympics started Yesterday. We haven't had regular TV or Cable for more than 6 years now.

To throw my two cents in here I think these attempts are going to put more adrenilin junkies out in the back country. In the long run it may be good for the sport as these folks grow older.

This should definately be an olympic event. Heck with the Marathon.

Elizabeth Rothman
(erothman2) - F

Locale: Pacific NW
Hot Discussion on 08/08/2008 18:36:48 MDT Print View

OK, I started it. But wow, I started it to encourage some good, heartfelt sharing of differing points of view, not to cause hurt feelings, stimulate red-faced defensiveness, or invite invective and personal insults. If my stating my opinion strongly- and I believe I owned it as just my opinion, and acknowledged the superdude's right to hike his own hike, etc- if my Brooklyn-born strength of rhetoric offended, I apologize. Chad, your responses especially seem to to reflect that you have taken this all a bit personally. Relax. I believe you, he and all of us have a right to do what we want as long as it doesn't damage the resource or disturb anyone else. I reserve the right to find some choices personally distasteful, and to discuss the choice and my response in a civil manner with mature fellow hikers (of any age).
I enjoy a spirited exchange and difference of opinion, but not when personal attacks are made. If some readers find statements of differing opinions threatening or offensive, well I don't know what to say. Maybe participating in forums or discussions with who-knows-whom on line isn't a good choice.

I have read some things here I agree with and some I don't, and it's all given me food for thought and led me a bit farther along in figuring out just what my objection is- which I said at the outset I couldn't identify.

While I ponder it, while we ponder it, thanks all for your thoughts and let's play nicely and keep talking.

And whew! When I saw something about cycling through a wilderness area- well, I'm glad somebody asked and that the answer was detours. If THIS discussion caused so much agitation, what would happen if we got into THAT? :-)

Linsey Budden

Locale: pugetropolis
RE: "AT Speed Record Attempt" on 08/08/2008 18:36:58 MDT Print View

Fast, slow, heavy, light; whatever gets one out. HYOH. What confuses me is if a record is set for a vehicle supported trail run of the trail, is it considered a trail running record or a distance hiking record? To me there certainly is a difference between the two considering the help carrying gear.

Elizabeth Rothman
(erothman2) - F

Locale: Pacific NW
P.S. on 08/08/2008 18:42:02 MDT Print View

We do not conquer peaks, or trails. They are not at war with us. They just are, they just exist. We only conquer ourselves, and our limitations. Maybe if there was less of that warrior/competitive/ManMustRuleNature energy about this I'd be a teeny bit more comfortable.

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Re: AT Speed Record Attempt on 08/09/2008 10:03:58 MDT Print View


Good eye! My avatar is in the Whites from a blazing fall 2006. It's actually on little Hedgehog Mountain off the Kancamagus Hwy. about midway between Lincoln and Conway, NH.

Sorry about the deviation from the thread folks.

René Enguehard
(ahugenerd) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland
Re: Re: Re: AT Speed Record Attempt on 08/09/2008 21:46:39 MDT Print View

I find it interesting. Not for me, but still interesting from a purely academic standpoint. On the topic of disrespecting: I find it is a tenuous argument to make that going fast on a trail is disrespectful or in any way wrong. At least he's out there, which is more than can be said of a lot of people. To an extent, he is bringing some publicity to himself, the trail and the sport. How is that bad?

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: AT Speed Record Attempt/CT in 5 days myself... on 08/10/2008 09:25:03 MDT Print View

Christopher, what single speed bike did you use? Did you make a gear list?

Christopher Plesko
(Pivvay) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Re: Re: Re: AT Speed Record Attempt/CT in 5 days myself... on 08/10/2008 22:19:37 MDT Print View

Redline Monocog frame/QBP rigid fork. Parts are a mix, nothing too trick other than NoTubes rims/Schwalbe tires. I have a gearlist but it's not posted. ~5lbs base weight with a stove, GPS, AA camera and SPOT.

David T
(DaveT) - F
. on 08/11/2008 10:34:16 MDT Print View


Edited by DaveT on 01/18/2015 18:52:58 MST.

victoria maki
(clt1953) - F

Locale: northern minnesota
re:speed hiking on 08/11/2008 12:36:19 MDT Print View

all i want to know is who is he hurting?? i tend to hike fast just because i walk faster than most people. it is hard for me to slow down. i still enjoy the scenery, just at a different speed and i really enjoy it when i get to camp....different strokes for different folks.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
If you like speed hiking you will love this on 08/11/2008 13:04:12 MDT Print View

This is next

Open AT to ATV's
and in a few years I will be able to Thru-Hike the AT driving a SUL modified Hummer.

Running on a trail accelerates trail erosion.

Joshua Gilbert
(joshcgil2) - F

Locale: Seattle
okay, seriously? on 08/11/2008 13:50:08 MDT Print View

I think the comparison of someone running down a trail, under their own power, with the possibility of someone who is disabled using a specially modified atv is disengenious, at best. Is increased speed some sort of gateway drug, that will cause us to need to move faster and faster until we use some rocket powered rollerskates to send us hurtling down the trail? seems doubtful.

While the hyperbole of a record attempt on the A.T. is not particularly interesting to me, as a trail runner and hiker, the idea that me running down the trail is somehow not in the "spirit of the trail" whatever that means,strikes me as completely silly. The argument that running increases trail erosion, well, maybe somewhere there is some sort of explanation that might lend credence to that theory (physics of incresed impact or something)I can't begin to imagine that the impact is so much greater that it is a problem. One trail runner, or 100 hikers, which contributes more? There certainly are fewer runners out there.

really, this is a strange sort of argument. Sometimes, when my wife and I hike, we start running, because we like to run, sometimes when we are running, we stop and walk and look at at birds or wildflowers. If you narrow your definition of what is okay for people to do on the trail, you start having strange ethical arguments with yourself, or writing long, rambling posts on line.

Another contributer to erosion? Rain. Maybe we should put a roof over the trail.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: If you like speed hiking you will love this on 08/11/2008 13:54:49 MDT Print View

Bill, if "they" start allowing ATV's on the AT, it'll be time to pull out the carbon stock/titanium barrelled AK47 and go on patrol, eh?

About that trail running/erosion stuff. What about fat hikers stomping along on the trail and their erosion? Should we have a weight limit to hike the AT?

Edited by jshann on 08/11/2008 13:57:48 MDT.

John Brochu
(JohnnyBgood4) - F

Locale: New Hampshire
re: running on 08/11/2008 14:47:03 MDT Print View

>>> Running on a trail accelerates trail erosion.

Man, I'm gonna try this line on my hiking partners next time I can't keep up with them.... "Hey, slow down you losers, you're all causing excessive erosion...!"

Bill, do you hike during or after it rains?

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: re: running on 08/11/2008 15:34:26 MDT Print View

John Brochu is onto something. I'd have to say that hiking in wet weather/mud would cause alot more trail damage than trail running in dry weather.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
AT Speed Record Attempt on 08/11/2008 15:52:41 MDT Print View

As a trail maintainer for several years I was able to watch the erosion on my section of trail on a monthly bases from the effects of trail runners.

I was part of a small group that would run on my section and other nearby trail sections. This was a hilly section of trail and we were pounding the rock base lose and when it rained the water carried the lose dirt away. Then the rocks were pushed off the trail by our running and the erosion cycle started over.

After a few months I could see the damage we were doing and we stopped.

Become a trail maintainer or help a trail maintainer every month for a year and you may wake up to what accelerates trail erosion.

Joshua Gilbert
(joshcgil2) - F

Locale: Seattle
where did I put that alarm clock? on 08/11/2008 17:21:06 MDT Print View

One piece of anecdotal evidence from one region of the country does not make a universal truth.

Trails erode. Trail use, at whatever speed helps accelerate that erosion, true, but trails are there for use, by definition. If foot powered traffic is allowed on a trail, then the speed of said traffic is immaterial. Plenty of places are incredibly eroded without much trailrunner traffic (adirondak park for example)

A lot of people on this site have done trail maintinence, myself included. I volunteered my time, and as long as someone wasn't riding a motorcycle down the trail, I can't say that their speed was a problem for me or for the trail.

todd h
(funnymoney) - MLife

Locale: SE
Re: where did I put that alarm clock? on 08/11/2008 20:32:42 MDT Print View


While speed itself probably won't increase erosion, think about this: weight (downward force) can.

I mean...which causes more impact for you: walking down a hill or running down it? Your feet hit harder running, and that DOES / CAN increase erosion.


Linsey Budden

Locale: pugetropolis
trail erosion on 08/11/2008 23:04:05 MDT Print View

You wouldn't believe what horse traffic does to a trail in the wet Cascades--I've seen giant mudbogs on parts of the PCT and other area trails which I hope I rightly cross thru instead of skirting the edges of.

Jesse Glover
(hellbillylarry) - F

Locale: southern appalachians
erosion on 08/12/2008 05:07:46 MDT Print View

Sure running causes erosion. So does walking. Don't forget trekking poles and fat people or guys with 60 lb packs. How about having a security guard at every trailhead that makes sure that the only ultralight hikers get on the trail, we could even have low impact shoe rental like the bowling alley.