Archive for August, 2011

Fantastic Four

Well, I’m not sure about how fantastic we are, but there are four of us now. Shawn’s son Tyler did a practice hike to LeConte with us last weekend and got bit with the bug to join us for our 24-hr hike in September. The four of us hiked well together as a team and all have a similar hiking pace.

Now we’ll have 2 young guys to lead the way and identify the yellowjacket nests for us ;-).

Our group at the lodge


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Thinking About Fuel

Shawn here…

So one of the things we have to think about is energy and refueling.  Let’s do a little math.  A person weighing 160 lbs burns about 460 calories per hour of hiking in the mountains.  If we plan for 18 hours hiking time, that’s 8,280 calories.  Is it even possible to take in that many without blowing your heart out?

  • That’s 33 PowerBar Harvest Energy bars
  • 19 peanut butter sandwiches
  • 55 24 oz bottles of Gatorade
  • 23 pouches of tuna
  • 13 6 oz packages of cheese
  • 59 packs of Craisens
  • 25 6″ Subway Club sandwiches
  • 3 1/2 Large Pizza’s
I don’t know about the pizza but the rest is on the menu list.  Maybe a little more research is in order.
We’ll probably consume 3 – 4 gallons of water, half of which we can get at the top of the mountain.

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After seeing our posts on Facebook, a friend of mine Davis Soehn (a 16-yr old Boy Scout from Gatlinburg) contacted us and said that he has wanted to attempt this for a long time but couldn’t find anyone to do it with him. We are excited about having Davis join us. He is in very good physical condition, so now we’ll have someone to run for help if we need it ;-). Davis is beside me (3rd from the right) in the photo below.

A Scout is Fit. A few of us acting silly at the 2010 National Scout Jamboree.

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Genesis Of The Idea

For my 50th birthday, my wonderful wife reserved a night for two in one of the cabins up on Mt. LeConte.  It was her first trip up the mountain and the first overnight stay for both of us.  The experience was fantastic and well worth the process to register in the annual lottery.  On the way up Alum Cave Trail, I was pondering my first half century on the planet and decided not to go lightly into my second.  I was already planning a 200 mile bike ride from Seattle to Portland in a few weeks and maybe a marathon later in the year and it hit me.  Why not try to do LeConte in 24 hours?  No records…just doing it would be challenge enough.

Alice Carson at the Mt. LeConte Lodge

When we got to the top, we were relaxing and getting to know our fellow hikers and the staff of the LeConte Lodge when I asked about information regarding a 24 hour hike.  As it turned out, one of the staff had done it last year and he was very helpful in sharing his experience.  He had gotten it done in 18 hours.

My good friend Brian Thomas posted pictures on Facebook a couple weeks later of a hike he took up the Brushy Mountain trail..19 plus miles in one day.  So I commented back asking him if he was interested in the 24 hour challenge.  The thing about announcing a big goal is that it really ramps up the accountability for actually doing it.  The one thing that ramps it up even further is to be part of a team. So here we are.  The big day is September 17.

Mt. LeConte from Clingman's Dome

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Purpose of this Blog

My buddy Shawn and I love Mt. LeConte in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park so much that we decided to attempt to hike all 6 trails in one outing. We are calling this “24 Hours of Mt. LeConte” or “LeConte Triple Summit”.

We scoured the internet to get information about how to go about this endeavor, but aside from a few news stories that it had been done, we were basically left to figure it out on our own.

We decided to create this blog containing information about the route that we plan to use, the logistics about how to do it, and summary notes from our prep hikes. We will also post the results of our attempt and any recommendations that we may have for hikers that may wish to attempt this in the future.

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