I have been curious about the true length of the Skyline Trail for quite some time. The Blue Hills trail map calls it 9 miles long, along with the description on this website. Comments on alltrails indicate that users found it to be 9 miles on their GPS watches. My perceived pace also makes me think that this is a 9 mile trail. However, the GPS that I used today recorded it as 7.5 miles each way. Alltrails' map calls it 7.5, and when I mapped it using the OSM map at mapometer.com, I got 7.5 miles. It's not like there are two possible trails/termini; the Skyline Trail is very well marked and defined. I have no clue what could explain this incongruity, and I have no clue how long the trail actually is.
Nice work on the double out and back! I can relate to your story from your blog post as I am also local and found this to be a great challenge close to home. These are some awesome trails considering its in sight of Boston. I am also confused with it saying its 9 miles all the different forms of GPS I’ve used always comes out to 7.5 too. Maybe it was measured a long time ago inaccurately so that’s what people have gone with. Either way that should probably get updated on the websites.
I want to ask about the gps you used for this run. It shows no stopping at all on the pace chart and then the moving time is exactly the same as total time. Then it says stuff about an auto pause feature where the timer stops recording if you stop? I can’t tell if that was on during your run from the map my run page but to run those hills and through road passings for 6 + hours without stopping once would be really crazy. As far as I know all FKT’s are based on start to finish time with no pause in the activity. It also shows a start time of 6:25 am but then doesn’t say a time for finish which would give an accurate time of the activity. I’m not sure if I am just reading the map my run page wrong but just wanted to check and see how that works?
Anyway, congrats on the big run! I enjoyed reading your blog post about it. Keep up the great running!
Thanks for pointing that out about the GPS. To be honest, this was the first run I have ever tracked using GPS so I am not sure how it works. I just used the mapmyrun app, since it seemed like the most reputable run tracker that is free. I will look into whether the app keeps recording when stopped, and if it does not then I'll definitely need to have the time updated! As far as stopping, the road crossings were definitely a concern of mine since I've been stuck having to wait for several minutes at a time on the Skyline, and that factored into my starting this run early on a Saturday. I got very lucky with the road crossings, and I don't remember needing to stop and wait. (Chickatawbut/Wompatuck being partially closed helped, since that eliminates two crossings.) The only time I stopped moving at all was at the halfway point, when I drank some Gatorade and grabbed food that I had cached there. As a conservative estimate, I'd say that it took no more than two minutes, and I didn't touch my phone at all during this. (I also started recording when I got out of my car in the parking lot while getting ready, since I did not intend on going for the FKT, but that only added time on- maybe a minute.) If there's any other information or data that I can provide then let me know!
Good luck with your running, I'm hoping that we can keep dropping the time on this FKT!