Gear: Ultimate Direction Pack. 3 X 500ml bottles 2 in pack, one in handheld for convenience. Shorts, vest, toque, buff, arm warmers, Hoka Speedgoat 4's. inReach Tracker and my phone. Lighter and foil blanket.
Nutrition: 2 X500ml of tailwind (400-450 calories). 1 Gel (100 calories), 1/2 pb sandwich (200 calories, couldn't stomach it), 1 clif bar (220 calories), 1.5 packs of Gummies (300 calories) Total 1300ish.
Water: Stopped at Marion (took on maybe 750ml), Peggy (took on 1000ml). Hindsight should have taken more as I ended up going all the way to Hemenway. Ritchie was already dry and suffering. Had to regroup at Hemenway, which took 6+ minutes. Good to go after that.
Trail: South side in amazing condition. Trees had been cleared since a month ago. 1/2 way the trail was wet which caught me off guard. A few slips and really threw me off, lost my focus at times. Navigation, for the most part pretty good. No major mistakes, though the north side was harder (leaves on trail) and you run cautiously always scanning where to go. That is what makes Mantario, Mantario.
Grateful to Gord F. who ran with me the first 1/3 and then was there to pick me up if things went bad. Thank you. I wouldn't do it completely solo. There were zero cars in the south parking lot (shocked) when we arrived. Few groups going south, just seeing people helps. If I'd do it again, I'd pick a very busy trail day. Keeps motivation up when you see someone.
Training: I ran the trail with friends in September to scout it out. Huge help for Nav obviously. I am experienced on trails and long endurance events and willing to take some risks. Be careful out there, things can go bad so quickly. Even on this run, I helped a solo hiker who was way off the trail. There is no way out once you start.
FKT: Had hoped to do it this year. Fun to see the record get broken a couple times (all by friends). Now I just want to hike the trail and take my time.