FKT: Anton Krupicka - Mt Baldy (CA) - 2012-02-05

Route variation
Bear Canyon ascent
Gender category
Finish date
Total time
1h 37m 22s

Tony Krupicka just (Feb. 5) did the ascent in 1h37m22s, as posted on his blog:

Here's the entry. Note that the 2h26m is RT time not including hanging around on the summit for a unspecified period of time. I.e., he ran up in 1h37m and down in 49m.

"Sun-AM: 2:26, 5800' ~ Mt. Baldy
Up and down Bear Canyon from Baldy Village (4300') with Dominic and Katie again. Started off slow and creaky, feeling yesterday's run a bit in the hip flexors and hamstrings. Just didn't have good pop or strength all day really. Eventually found a rhythm, though, and ground out this remarkably sustained, long climb. It's just a really good, direct line up the mountain; not a lot of messing around. Hit a 1:37:22 ascent from the Bear Cyn Drive/Baldy Village junction to the summit plaque (~6.4mi). Waited around for Dom, just enjoying the super clear day on the summit and then descended in :49. Again, really nicely-flowing singletrack with stunning views the whole way down. Awesome mountain. I've been really impressed with the 1010's performance this weekend, too, on mountain trails. Soaked in the frigid stream afterwards before some pretty stellar french toast at the Baldy Village Lodge."


Krupicka added:

Just wanted to make a few comments about this run, mostly because I think it's a super-classic route that would be fun to make some serious attempts on.

-Last Sunday (2/5/2012) was my first time up the Bear Canyon trail and only my second time ever to the summit of Baldy (summited via the Ski Hut trail from Manker Flats back in December 2011 the other time).

-I started my watch at the green road signs for the intersection of Mt. Baldy Rd and Bear Canyon Drive. Basically, directly across the road from the Mt. Baldy Lodge. My 1:37:22 was the time from there to the summit plaque.

-This was an exceedingly casual effort. The day before on Mt. Wilson had been the first time in almost 12 months that I'd run continuously for 2h30 (due to injury) so I was understandably tired and tight for the run up Baldy. Started off really slow and mellow (no official pre-climb warm-up like I would do in a true FKT-effort) just easing into the day and the continuous 5800' of vertical and wasted at least a minute stashing my t-shirt along the trail in Bear Canyon (I was warm enough shirtless on the climb and just a light shell on the summit). The entire way I was at casual training pace effort because I didn't know the route and didn't want to blow-up or anything, plus I wasn't feeling particularly strong. Basically a scouting, baseline effort with very little focus on truly going hard (though I was definitely working). I would've gone harder if I'd felt better--I generally just had a tired/off day and wasn't climbing very well at all (relative to what I'm used to). I felt way stronger the day before on Mt. Wilson.

-Splits were 22:40 to the stream crossing at Bear Flats, ~:47 to the "twin" rocks just below gaining the ridge, 50:30 to the ridge at ~7400', 1:15:45 to the ridge crest at ~9200' or so (where the trail flattens out/rolls down onto the barren knife edge ridge of scree).

-This route is great: nice steep trail, steady ascent until ~9500' or so where it flattens out considerably for the last bit to the summit, great footing/tread almost the entire way, just a touch loose lower down when you first start climbing out of Bear Flats.

-Peter is right, I got to the summit, hit my watch, and then waited around for Dominic Grossman to summit ~27min later. We then took some pictures before descending. So I probably spent close to 40min with my watch stopped on the summit before descending in :49 back to the Mt. Baldy Lodge in Baldy Village where we'd started. That, too, was just normal training pace, not pushing, though I had decent energy on the downhill as compared to my low energy on the climb.

-I kinda hate idle speculation but with a fit, focused effort I think I could hit this in the 1:25-ish range up and close to sub-40 on the downhill (I took some pictures on the downhill). 2hr would probably be my holy grail on the roundtrip.

You SoCal mountain runners should all give this a shot! It's a great run!