Fastest known time (FKT) is a phrase used by mountain runners, ski mountaineers, and climbers, among others, to refer to what is known to be the speed record for a given peak or route. A FKT acknowledges the fact that many fast ascents routinely go unrecorded and to claim to be the fastest ever in a sport with no officials may improper. It is a nod though to those of us who care and keep track of things like speed records.I doubt anyone could give a reasonable argument that interest in speed attempts and FKTs is not well rooted in our desire to impress upon others that we are the best at something, recognition always feels good, however I do believe that for myself, the interest may also stem from my time as a competitive nordic skier but also from a deep desire to sleep in my own comfortable bed each night. I do enjoy camping but generally have the philosophy that if something can be done in a day (IAD) then why prolong the suffering? I would rather cruise around the Spearhead in 5 hours with a 5 pound pack and be back to the village for a burger and home for a movie than slog around it in 3 days with a 25 pound pack suffering a snoring tent-mate and dehydrated food. Below is a collection of FKTs for peaks and routes in my area and others that I am interested in. They have no particular significance aside from the fact that I have heard of them and they seem fun. I try to keep abreast of changes but leave a comment if I am missing something! All times are car-to-car (or trailhead-to-trailhead) unless noted.
- MEN: Nick E – 17:35 *Strava shows a faster men’s time but is not truly signpost to summit so Nick’s is the correct record.
- WOMEN: Abby Morgan – 24:00
- MEN: Mike Murphy – 3:44 (Prev. Nick E & Eric C – 3:51, Gary Robbins- 3:45)
- WOMEN: Alicia Woodside & Tara Berry – 4:28:15
- MEN: 45:29min Nick Elson
- WOMEN: Brooke Spence: 1:01:55
- MEN: Eric Carter – 1:45:49 (Prev: Jessie McAuley – 1:49:41, Eric C – 1:53:50)
- WOMEN: Sarah Hart – 2:41:38 (Prev: Kyle Kirkegaard – 2:45:54, Sarah Hart – 3:20:18)
- MEN: Nick Elson – 1:47:27
- WOMEN: ? Anne Marie Madden ?
- MEN: Nick E – 6:54.00
- WOMEN: ?
- Ross Berg ~45min
- Andrew Rennie ~30hrs (?)
Sebastian Selas – 0:23.48(DOPER) Reverts to old Record by Jonathan Wyatt – 24:22
- WOMEN: Madison Sands – 29:10 ?
- Eric Carter – 11hrs 49min (*accompanied partially by Matt Hall)
- Eric C & Nick E – 12:08:23 (Prev. Peter Croft – using a direct line up Sphinx N Ridge so better style!)
- Men: Eric Carter – 2:04:52 (Prev. Mike Murphy – 2:12:38)
- Women: ?
- Note: Nick Elson set a fast time on the West Lion via the NE Buttress, a technical climbing route that he soloed in 2:42:24 round trip.
- ~13.5hrs Christian Veenstra
- Troy Jungen et al., ~80hrs
- MEN: Eric Carter & Nick Elson – 3:10 (Prev. Greg Hill – 4hrs ish?)
- WOMEN: ??
- Brendan Armstrong and Jessie McAuley – 6:27:16 (Prev. Brad Schalles ~6.5hrs) *Preferred SPEARHEAD FKT route*
- MEN: Guy Edwards, John Millar – 5mo. 14 days.
- WOMEN: Martina and Tania Halik – ~6mo (?)
- MEN: Hamish Fraser – 33min (Diedre + Squamish Buttress)
- MEN: 38 minutes Alex Honnold
- MEN: 1:08 Marc-Andre Leclerc
- MEN: Jason Dorais and Tom Goth – 3:24 (Prev. Eric C – 3:51; Jason & Andy Dorias – 3:57)
- WOMEN: Katie Bono – see below.
- MEN: Peter Butler – 3:15 (Prev. Nick E & Eric C ~3:37)
- WOMEN: Katarina Kuba – 4:10 *accompanied for glacier travel but unsupported by Jessie McAuley.
- MEN: Eric Carter – 3:38 (Prev. Peter Butler – 4:10* did not summit; Nick E & Eric C – 5:14)
- WOMEN: ?
Grand Teton (Owen Spaulding Route):
Teton Grand Traverse:
- MEN: Nick Elson – 6hr30m (Previously Rolo Garibotti – 6:49)
- WOMEN: Jeanelle Smiley – 12:17?
Denali (Cassin Ridge): Colin Mother Fucking Haley – 8:07! (prev – Jonathan Griffith & Will Sim 14:40.0)
- Men – Kilian Jornet – 11:40
- Women – Katie Bono – 21:06
- MEN: Nick Elson – 2:03:52 (Prev. Dean Potter – 2:19 *via a more direct but also more technical route – Snake Dike)
Mt. Shasta (ascent only): Ryan Ghelfi – 1:36:13
This page has a discussion on ethics and style for FKTs. Really though, the key is being honest. Otherwise, part of the fun is that the rules are there are no rules!