Ok so first of all I saw that there was no FKT set for this trail and I thought it was a shame as this is the most popular hiking trail in Indiana. I imagine that this will be broken by someone else soon who wasn't paying attention. This was just a fun goal for the pandemic year for me.
I carried 2.5 liters of water with a filter and extra bladder to use as there was a high of 80 degrees on the day. I got dropped me off just after 6 and I started in the dark for a few hours. It was beautiful, 52 degrees crisp and silent. I took my lightest head lamp because I didn't want something heavy and it worked just fine. The first couple hours were nice and easy. Once the sun came up the trail started to really flow and the pockets of cool air were refreshing. I met my parents at Yellowwood Lake mile 27.5. At the aid station I filled my 2 0.5L bottles but forgot to fill the bladder. I dropped off trash, the filter, and head lamp and picked up more calories. It honestly felt great. It started to heat up from there. The section around Yellowwood was harder than I remembered it from my previous hike. Around 30 miles you pop out onto a fire road and all day I had been waiting for this. I was able to open up a few good miles and listen to music. It got HOT and after the road section I was really feeling the heat. My stomach wasn't taking much more and it was hard to know whether to drink more or back off...I backed off. I did the best I could with the pace and some miles were better than others. I got more water from my parents at mile 40 and finished up on the single track. That section is really over grown and it is hard to find flow but I did my best....knowing I had to walk back to the car at the end. Overall it was tough but thats what I wanted. I also didn't have much left at the end which is also what I wanted. Nice pandemic project for 2020.
Well done, Derek! Good for you for getting it done, especially this year, and getting this route up on the site too.