AT Crushed: ‘Stringbean’ Sets Both Speed Records

Joe ‘Stringbean’ McConaughy, a well-known speed hiker, set a new record on the Appalachian Trail today. He hiked the 2,190-mile route in an unofficial fastest known time (FKT) of 45 days, 12 hours, 15 minutes.

McConaughy’s hike began the trail on July 17th at 6:31 a.m. EST, in Georgia (South to North). If verified by community-recognized officials who manage FKTs (and it likely will be), Stringbean’s hike breaks both the unsupported and supported records.

His new unofficial record would beat the old record of 54 days set by Heather “Anish” Anderson by an astounding nine days.

Maybe more remarkably, it also means that, under his own power and without outside support, McConaughy beat renowned ultrarunner Karl Meltzer’s record set in 2016 of 45 days, 22 hours, and 38 minutes. His effort raises the bar on through-hiking speed to an almost unfathomable level.

He averaged about 50 miles per day without outside assistance. Epic.

While his hike went on without the fanfare of Meltzer’s 2016 supported hike (in which ultra-runner Scott Jurek provided support), McConaughy is well known.

In 2014, he smashed the record on the Pacific Crest Trail, finishing the 2,660-mile journey in just 53 days, 6 hours and 37 minutes. He was 23 years old at the time.

Learn more about Stringbean here…


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