FKT: Christopher C Gorney - Triple Rainbow Loop (NV) - 2023-12-20

Route variation
Standard route
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
2h 55m 33s
GPS track(s)

Triple Rainbow Loop! As soon as I saw this route I knew I had to go for it. I’ve done Rainbow many times from all sides, so I am familiar with the mountain. We’ve been having mild weather recently in Las Vegas, so I hoped for good conditions. I wanted to be on the Rainbow Direct route while the sun was coming up, so I started at Middle Oak Creek Trailhead in the dark. 

The temperature was about 40 degrees, but no wind to speak of meant it didn’t feel that cold. I went light. I wore a running hat and shades, a t-shirt and super thin sun hoodie. Running shorts, with a naked belt. In the belt I had my phone, keys, 3 gels, 500ml of water, and a hand held light. On my feet, Hoka Speedgoats. No pack allows the cracks and chimneys on Rainbow Direct to go much easier. 

The run into the canyon (Oak Creek) was cool and peaceful. I nailed the approach up to RD. Got there in 27 minutes. Started the climb in the dark but it got light right away. Seeing Wilson light up across the canyon as I climbed was a welcomed bonus. Got to the summit (Rainbow East) in 1:25:30 elapsed. Dropped through the notch to the west and up, over Rainbow Mountain Summit. 1:36:30. Then over to the top of the Wall. 1:46:30. I thought if I got there in under 1:50 I had a chance to go sub-3 hours. There I was. The butterflies fluttered in my stomach. Let’s goooooo! 

Down I went! Running, hopping, and jumping down as fast as I could. Once down into the upper slabs of Oak Creek Canyon I slipped on some sandy boulders and smashed up my left leg. I kinda caught myself both times, but not before slamming my shin into the rocks. Battle wounds! Ha, I think it’s bad form to hurt yourself when you’re out playing in the mountains, but it just goes to show that I was at my athletic limits on this effort, on the edge of being out of control and flailing, lol. It was a total blast. Made it back to the trailhead in 2:55:33 elapsed time. Yeeewwww! All in all a good clean run. I could maybe do the ascent faster, but I am very happy with this effort, it was all I had that day. Shout out to Mike Toffey for putting up a fun route.