FKT: Jacob Jackson - Joshua Tree Traverse (CA) - 2024-03-08

Route variation
out & back
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
13h 26m 11s

Redemption is sweet! When I went after this route as unsupported in 2021, I failed to find my dropped water bottles and had to take water from a trail angel to get me by resulting in the attempt being classified as self-supported. Came back at the end of 2023 but my trail fitness just wasn't there and only got 50 miles in. I knew I wanted to come back in 2024 but just needed a window of time between races to get it done. Fortunately that opportunity presented itself with a scheduled day off work and a good weather forecast. 

I started with 5 liters of water and decided to leave 2 500ml bottles around 11 miles from the start picking them up on the way back. The out portion went great until the last 10-12 miles when the wind picked up and found myself fighting with a strong headwind. Got to the turn around in 6 hours which was a little slower than planned. The return trip had its ups and downs fighting the wind and soft sand for long stretches. Plus the second half has most of the elevation gain as well. I started having to ration water about 20 miles in and wished I had dropped my bottles a little further from the start. But made good time overall. Picked up my bottles and grinded up the last long gradual climb just as the sun was setting. Ran down the last 6 miles with a headlight and was pushing to finish under 13:30. Ended up with 13:26:11 and finally put a respectable time down for this epic route. Hopefully someone else will give it a go soon!!