FKT: Nate Bender - Ding - Dang Canyons (UT) - 2020-12-17

Route variation
Standard loop
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
54m 11s
GPS track(s)

This was the most fun I've ever had running in slot canyons. The mixture of athleticism and cardio fitness is unbeatable! You gotta be athletic to jump between boulders and scramble up/down the scrambly sections, all while going at threshold intensity over jumbled terrain. It's intense and damn fun.

At the same time, the consequences are real. A misstep while running through the boulders or scrambling down one of the drops could seriously injure or even kill you. Understand and respect the terrain, and run within your limits!

I think adding some non-technical and semi-technical slot canyons to the FKT world, like these two, is a good thing. At its best, running slot canyons feels like gymnastics for grown-ups. But I also think that as you get into the more technical canyons requiring ropes/gear, etc. the same precautions need to be taken as speed attempts in the climbing world. The consequences are much the same.

Weather was low 30s and overcast for this, which was actually perfect. There was a slight dusting of snow in the upper couple hundred feet of both canyons and the connector trail between the two. But the snow didn't slow me down. 

There was one other car at the TH, and the couple it belonged to arrived back at the TH just as I was finishing my warmup, so I was pretty confident there wouldn't be anyone else in the canyons. Like Jason wrote, be courteous to others and time any speed attempts for the off-seasons when there are no/few people. Stoked to see what other people can lower the time to on this fun route. Have fun, be safe!