FKT: Dan Pizzo - Art Loeb Trail (NC) - 2020-08-09

Route variation
out & back
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
21h 56m 31s
GPS track(s)

Had planned this self supported yo-yo for Nov 22 2019.  After dropping cars the night before, we woke up to to news of a freak fire in Cold Mountain.  Three of us planned to attempt.  Unfortunately we lost a running partner in June and we planned to complete this week to spread his ashes.  After finding out of an alternate Art Loeb completion 3 days before, we decided to change to unsupported and had a time for completion in mind.  The Art Loeb always surprises with it's burley elevation profile, trail that is so technical that it's hard to get in to a rhythm and to my luck, pretty heavy precip, relentless storms that last for hours.  The third in our group suffered from the classic hot day + rain cramps, nausea and chafing and had to drop.  I ended up feeling pretty good and completing solo.  The trail up at black balsam and to Shining Rock is hard to follow; anytime we went off trail, ended up on another parallel trail we went back to make sure we hit the Art Loeb; therefore a few extra miles of frustration! Water was fairly plentiful due to the heavy rain.  I took enough supplies for an unsupported and i am glad that i packed extra layers to change in to after I got soaked through and through on the most exposed parts of the run.  Lubing a few extra times may have been a good idea.This time is not hard to beat.