FKT: Adam Wilcox, Ryan Welts - Grafton Notch Loop (ME) - 2014-07-06

Gender category
Route variation
Standard route
Finish date
Total time
9h 29m 30s

The Grafton Notch Loop is 39 mile trail that was completed in 2007. Close to the Sunday River ski area in western Maine near the New Hampshire border, it generally follows the mountain ridge lines that surround Grafton Notch and the Bear River Valley, passing over the summits of Old Speck, the Baldpates, and Sunday River White Cap. From Old Speck to the East Baldpate the loops runs concurrently with the Appalachian Trail while the remainder is newly constructed trail with periodic campsites, shelters, and water sources available.

On Sunday, July 6, 2014, Ryan Welts and I (Adam Wilcox) ran the entire route in 9:29:30. My GPS track is here:

and report is here:

As near as I can tell, Ryan and I set a new Fastest Known Time (FKT) for the route. A little Googling beforehand showed that Scott and Deb Livingston with Matt Schomburg ran the whole route in 13:26 in 2008, shortly after the loop was completed. The next year, Steve and Deb Pero et al also did the whole thing roughly 14-15 hours. I had heard a rumor of a possible 10:30 time but no one I've talked to can remember where they heard that, who did it, or when it might have happened. In any case, we left plenty of slack in our day and if this worthy route sees more attention I wouldn't be surprised to see some one better our time by ninety minutes.