Wow, this route was such a gem. I had prepared myself for a questionable bushwhack and instead was treated to a beautiful romp through the forest on well-marked trails. I love that this route requires going up the fire tower and out to Hanson top, as those are the best views!
Started up Libby road (started time at gate) past Hanson top cutoff to the summit. Used the original trail, not the shortcut, though I doubt it makes a time difference. from the summit, I went down Dearborn which is the narrowest of all of the trails (single track in spots) though still very well marked and even with down trees, easy to follow. Touched the sign at the start of Dearborn and headed back up. Headed down High Watch Trail, which seems to be the most trafficked route and is wide and mostly runnable. Turned around in the middle of the parking lot as the trail sign seemed technically a little far up the trail for a tag. After this last accent took a trip up the fire tower for a selfie and some photos of the views. On the way back down Libby road I ran out to Hanson top all the way to the lookout and back. Libby road is a bit loose and rocky on the top half, but you can definitely let it loose on the bottom! Stopped time at the gate and got into my car smiling.
Overall did a lot of power hiking on the uphills and ran most of the downhills and flats. Only saw one other group the entire time out (on Memorial Day weekend non the less!) I think starting from Libby road or High Watch would be your best bet. Definitely bring bug spray and wear hunter orange if running around Oct-Dec or May as some of this is in hunting zones.
I'm sure someone can shave lots of time off here, and it's a beautiful place to do it! Should out to the OP, this will definitely become one of my training runs and makes for a great FKT.
***This FKT was done as #3 of my 25 FKT goal to raise money for the Women's Sports Foundation- check out more info on this at summit4something.com***