collegiate peaks nolan's 14
The Nolan's 14 route runs over 14 mountains in the Collegiate Range; photo credit: Ken Lund

Colorado’s Toughest FKT Sees 2 Records Fall

Nolan’s 14 is a 100-plus-mile run over 14 mountains, each over 14,000 feet high. And this week, two runners crushed the speed record over this brutal route.

Joey Campanelli completed the route, northbound and unsupported, in 1 day, 17 hours, 33 seconds on July 2, 2020. The run includes more than 40,000 feet of elevation gain.

Then, on Wednesday, Sarah Hansel set a new women’s unsupported record, running northbound in 2 days, 9 hours, 43 minutes.

Hansel’s new women’s record is also the first known unsupported women’s record on Nolan’s 14, an endeavor that requires people to finish within 60 hours.

It’s also the overall women’s record, with Meghan Hicks holding the women’s supported record of 2 days, 11 hours, 36 minutes, which has stood since 2011. According to the endeavor’s website, only 15% of those who attempt Nolan’s 14 actually complete it.

In Campanelli’s run, the 33-year-old from Alta, Utah, completed the fastest Nolan’s 14 effort, regardless of style. His northbound, unsupported FKT also beat every other record set on the route.

He topped the northbound supported record held by Alex Nichols (1 day, 22 hours, 41 minutes on June 29, 2018). He also beat the time of the unsupported southbound route (Joe Grant, 2 days, 1 hour, 38 minutes on June 29, 2018) and the supported southbound route (Andrew Hamilton 2 days, 5 hours, 42 minutes on July 2, 2017).

FKT Season in Full Swing

The record comes during a spate of significant new FKTs. Most notably, Kyle Curtin, a 33-year-old ultrarunner, crushed the 200-mile Tahoe Rim Trail in just 41 hours and 9 minutes.

“We’re overwhelmed,” wrote Buzz Burnell, who manages, the defacto official website of FKTs.

With summer offering good weather windows around the world, it’s unlikely to slow down. The website is currently tracking more attempts happening now on the Tahoe Rim Trail, Pacific Crest Trail, Long Trail, Colorado Trail, Appalachian Trail, and more.

Sean McCoy

Editorial Director Sean McCoy is a life-long outdoorsman who grew up hunting and fishing central Wisconsin forests and lakes. He joined GearJunkie after a 10-year stint as a newspaperman in the Caribbean, where he learned sailing and wooden-boat repair. Based in GearJunkie's Denver office, McCoy is an avid trail runner, camper, hunter, angler, mountain biker, skier, and beer tester.