bicycle brendan
Brendan Walsh, aka "Bicycle Brendan" in 2020.

‘Python Cowboy,’ 7 Ultramarathons in 7 Days: Adventure News of the Week

From the inspiring to the tragic, ‘Adventure News of the Week’ presents a wrap-up of top news in the world of exploration and adventure.

FKT: 69-Year-Old Sets Fastest Time on Superior Hiking Trail. Michael Knoppy, 69, hoped to complete the 310-mile trail in under 4 days (the previous record was over 6 days). Even though he didn’t hit his personal goal, he did set a new supported record with a time of 5 days and 4 hours, completing the trail from north to south.

CYCLE: Australian Sets Another New ‘Everesting’ Record in Colorado. Australian EF Pro Cycling rider, Lachlan Morton, broke the “Everesting” record for cycling on Saturday near Fort Collins, Colorado. Morton, who is based in Boulder, Colorado, rode the 1.9km Rist Canyon climb 42 times at an 11 percent grade to break the record in 7 hours, 32 minutes, 54 seconds.

Everesting involves climbing the full elevation of Mt. Everest, usually on a set course, in the fastest amount of time possible. The new standard in “Everesting” also stipulates that the full 8,848 m (29,029 feet) should be completed at altitude (to mimic the effects of Mt. Everest). UPDATE: Morton’s ride will not qualify as a new record, due to differences in data tracking which revealed he did not climb the required elevation. He was short by 2 meters.

HUNT: ‘Python Cowboy’ Catches, Kills Record-Size Python in Florida. Mike Kimmel is the owner of Martin County Trapping & Wildlife Rescue, but he’s also known as the “Python Cowboy.” Yesterday, he caught a python over 17 feet long, the second-largest now on record. More amazing, he captured the encounter with the snake on video.

PARKS: With Record Heat, National Park Services Opens Death Valley to Visitors. Death Valley National Park, located in California and Nevada, partially reopened to visitors this weekend despite the summer heat, with trailheads and roads opening first.

California has relaxed restrictions in its stay-at-home order, meaning many parks in the state can reopen. Check out our full list to see which parks are open.

RIDE: World-Record Cyclist Advocates, Raises Money for Mental Illness. A year after getting hit by a car, Brendan Walsh, aka “Bicycle Brendan,” got back on his bike and set an FKT for the fastest ride across America (north to south).

He completed the feat in 11 days, 9 hours, 33 minutes, setting a Guinness World Record.  Walsh raised money for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) during his ride.

“Endurance sports helped me with my own struggles with mental illness, including coping with the loss of friends to the same disease,” he said. “I also wanted to create something to give back to the endurance community that has given me so much.”

Enter the 10K for NAMI — Walsh is now asking others in the community to help him reach a $10,000 goal.

RUN: Marathoner Runs Marathon Record in Route to See Family. American ultrarunner Corey Cappelloni is running seven 50km ultramarathons in 7 days from Washington, D.C., to Scranton, Pennsylvania.

The motivation for the run? He wants to see his 98-year-old grandmother, who has been isolated due to COVID-19. He’s launched a virtual platform where you can run and donate alongside him. As thanks to the people who care for his grandmother, he’s raising money for Allied Services healthcare providers.

Mary Murphy

Mary is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and is based in GearJunkie's Denver, Colo. office. She has a degree in English and journalism, and has a background in both newspaper and magazine writing. Her outdoor interests span from running to sport climbing, from landscape photography to skiing to pack-paddleboarding. If she's not writing, you can most likely find her at the top of a fourteener, or in a local bakery.