It seems like every month someone is setting, or attempting to set, a new Fastest Known Time on one of our challenging local routes. Fastest Known Times, or FKTs, are a friendly competition of becoming the fastest person to complete a given route. They are basically a speed record. Ie, who holds the fastest Grind time? What is the record time for completing the Howe Sound Crest Trail?
I think Anton Krupicka sums up what FKTs are all about perfectly on his blog:
The do-it-yourself and vaguely subversive, underground nature of FKTs is the primary attraction for me. FKTs tend to exist on routes where races aren’t allowed (or the organization of one would be far too involved), but the line is so pure and obvious and hews to a certain geographical or mountain aesthetic (summit link-ups, circumnavigations in general and range traverses all come to mind) that it simply begs to be cleaned in a single, concerted push. The satisfaction that comes from pushing oneself all-out to explore a personal limit is still there but the hoopla and expense of a race isn’t, even if one prepares with as focused of a training regimen as he or she would for a race. It’s a very primal and largely unfettered way of being in the mountains and testing oneself.
There are a few resources on the net that track some of our local FKTs. Trail Runner magazine has a page dedicated to some of the more epic FKTs in Canada, like the West Coast Trail. And Eric Carter recently put a great call-out on his website for submissions for FKTs in the Sea to Sky area.
I wanted to aggregate these FKTs and encourage people to get creative, submit some new FKTs, and get some lively competition going.
So there’s a new Fastest Known Time page on the website, with submission form, where everyone can view the current FKTs and enter new ones. So check out the list, marvel at the times people have thrown down on some epic routes, and let me know if any data is missing.
There’s a lot of low-hanging fruit right now, particularly for the women, to get onto that page!
Check out the FKTs here: https://www.outdoorvancouver.ca/vancouver-fastest-known-times/