Remember these names? If you have my free Half Dome app, you have listened to Ryan talk about how he ran up the Half Dome trail. In 2008, Ghelfi went from Happy Isles to the summit and back in 2 hours 30 minutes and 50 seconds. Then pro runner Rickey Gates did it in 2010 in2 hours 28 minutes and 18 seconds. I call it a tie. Ryan is still a student at Southern Oregon University in Ashland (home of Shakespeare plays.) He’s on the track team.
On July 3 the two friends got together to run up Mt Shasta near Redding. If you’ve done the hike, you know how hard it is. They drove to the parking area early and ran from “Bunny Flat” to “Horse Camp” from where the long standing running record up Shasta was set in 1985. Bunny Flat is 6,950 ft above sea level. The summit is 14,179 feet. Wow, that’s a tough hike let alone run!!
They left Horse Camp at 8 am exactly in case the stopwatch died. Once they were in the snowfield, Gates used cross country spikes and an ice axe. Ghelfi used “Yak tracks,” They then clawed the steeper “left of heart” beneath the saddle and far to the left of the standard route. I’ve been up and Avalanche Gulch is the normal route. It gets steep about 11,000 feet.
Gates hit the summit at summit 1:38:10, just a minute faster than the record. Ghelfi arrived a few minutes later. To put all this in perspective, Bunny Flat to the summit is about 6 miles, but the elevation gains over 7,000 feet. “Normal people in good physical condition with good weather take 8-10 hours for the ascent. Half Dome is a 4,737 ft vertical rise.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Mountain climbing is extended periods of intense boredom, interrupted by occasional moments of sheer terror.” -Anonymous
MrHalfDome™ – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com