Jul 6, 2015 at 7:04 am #2212552
I'm not remotely suggesting anything on your part here …
but I am not in favor of the SPOT as the definitive authority on record verification.
it is pretty easy for 3 guys in good shape, conspiring together, to pull off a charade with one SPOT. The FKT public is very trusting and naïve about these things. Just wait till the big bucks start flowing the way of this Fringe sport …
Until such time as Peter starts offering skin embedded chips for verification I still think the old fashion methods offer the most reliable means of proof. Unfortunately they can slow down the pace a bit, and now that we are breaking records by minutes, well every minute counts.Jul 6, 2015 at 7:41 am #2212558
Art, I'm not sure what you mean by the "old fashioned" methods? What am I missing? I think SPOT is a big step forward in verification – along with preannouncing your intentions.
I announced almost 2 weeks before my start, with photos of me, on the JMT Yahoo group that's frequented by a large number of JMT through-hikers, most of whom will go SOBO, and some of whom will surely see me. I've preannounced here and on the FKT site.
People seeing me at places that I can't predict, along with a SPOT track that shows exactly where and when SOMEBODY is out there moving on the trail, is surely pretty definitive? Without SPOT, I could make sure that I get seen in the south somewhere, then drive from Onion Valley to Tuolumne! I think SPOT is pretty important.
But this whole thing still has an amateur ethos. Sure, I agree that there are always people who will cheat at anything in seemingly ridiculous ways, even when no money is involved, but I can't see the point in getting too worked up about that. I think most of us are doing this mainly as a personal challenge.Jul 6, 2015 at 7:52 am #2212561
The weather forecast is deteriorating, unfortunately. High probability of thunderstorms, snow and very cold temperatures.
Here's Evolution Valley at just 10,000 feet (NWS):
Things are looking better from Saturday. I think it's now almost certain that I delay my start until Saturday morning, 7/11.
Kind of annoying, since I now have to go for a walk-up permit, and figure out what to do to stay ready. Probably stay in Mammoth and do some thunder-chasing dayhikes up into the Minarets. If anyone's around the area, send me a PM.Jul 6, 2015 at 7:56 am #2212564Allen CBPL Member
Continuous drone footage from the entire 80+ hour journey is the obvious solution for verification. This will also prevent any switchback cutting. ;)
Edit – bummer that the weather is not cooperating. Better to wait for a decent forecast though than try to force it.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:22 am #2212572
Ralph – Old Fashioned, meaning hard copy and third party
John Rosendahl was the first one to do this in his 1988 record push, handing out little cards to people along the trail that asked them to mail him an acknowledgement.
also having a third party photograph you and mail a copy.
like I said this can slow you down.
So in the modern sense, any Third party method is key.
SPOT is not really third party in my opinion.
SPOT is an " ok " transitional method,
but something better needs to be found.
A third party drone would work, except its not allowed on certain parts of the trail.
I come from the climbing world, where people get incredibly worked up about seemingly insignificant claims, calling each other liars when really very little is at stake from the outside observers perspective.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:31 am #2212574
Art, your SPOT conspiracy theory is for an highly organized relay race to carry the device in consecutive segments. This would require several strong athletes to conspire, ALL of whom who risk ruining their reputation as cheats if ANY of them were caught or confessed. And only one of them would get any fame and fortune!
Compare the plausibility of a cheating conspiracy using "old fashioned" methods. It is surely far easier to arrange a conspiracy of "third parties" who claim to have seen you at certain points on the trail, who take prearranged photographs and who write letters to Peter Bakwin? These could be a bunch of people that you've paid a few bucks each, who have no sporting reputation, and couldn't care less if they get caught.
None of these methods are perfect. To my mind, it just comes down the plausibility and scale of conspiracy that would be required to cheat. So I don't think your objections to SPOT are reasonable. It's not perfect, but it's much better than anything that went before.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:37 am #2212576
All I'm saying is SPOT should be viewed as merely a transitional verification device until some better comes along.
we already have the technology for something better, its just a matter of cost and ease of use.
again, none of this is directed towards you personally, you have been quite open and vocal for some time now.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:37 am #2212577
"I come from the climbing world, where people get incredibly worked up about seemingly insignificant claims, calling each other liars when really very little is at stake from the outside observers perspective."
Fair enough… so let's learn from that, and not do it here, maybe.
Sure, I care if the majority of people don't believe me. But if there are a few diehard skeptics, I really don't care. Plenty of people still believe we didn't land on the moon, after all.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:39 am #2212579
"All I'm saying is SPOT should be viewed as merely a transitional verification device until some better comes along.
we already have the technology for something better, its just a matter of cost and ease of use."
Well that point is well taken. Bring on the technology.
But you can't criticize me for not using something that doesn't yet exist.
Your original objection was that my use of current state-of-the-art technology is inferior to "old fashioned" methods. I refute that.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:39 am #2212580Ben CBPL Member
Good luck, Ralph. I'll be cheering you on.Jul 6, 2015 at 8:48 am #2212583
ok my last comment on SPOT, its diverting too much from your thread about your FKT attempt.
I did not mean to criticize you, you are using the currently accepted verification method.
my comments were just meant to offer my opinion that SPOT is a step back from full Third Party (old methods) in that it is only maybe 2.5 party.
again, its transitional until we come up with an easy to use full third party method.
Best of luck in your effort.Jul 6, 2015 at 9:41 am #2212598
In any case, Art…
You can't get too carried away with this stuff. What's the point in devising utterly foolproof verification methods when it would be pretty easy for a determined cheat to just dose himself with EPO and blow away the record?
It's an amateur ethos, we just do our best to show that what we're doing is plausible, and use the best methods available for verification. I would say that I'd like to see people announcing what they are doing WELL in advance, at least a few days, ideally a week, so that more people will know to look out for them.
Also… re SPOT: watching people succeed or crash-and-burn real time with a SPOT track is a whole lot of fun! One of the highlights of last year for me was when the bounced SPOT signal made it look as though Jenn S had swum Garnet Lake after the record was out of reach. In my imagination, she still did that, and is the coolest FKT-er ever.Jul 6, 2015 at 11:52 am #2212622[ Drew ]BPL Member
@43tenLocale: Central Valley CA
Regarding the pacing schedule you posted-
What are your expectations for sleep? I see that you have 4 hour segments scheduled, but, if reading the schedule strictly, it'd mean that you would be asleep instantly after finishing your last step of the day. Now, I would guess that a portion of that 4 hour segment would be used to set up your sleep system and actually fall asleep. Hopefully the falling asleep part will be just about instantaneous due to the fatigue level.
Anyhow, I'm just curious about the above and wish you the best. I'll be in the AA Wilderness 7/10-15, but may be near the JMT at some point.Jul 6, 2015 at 12:08 pm #2212634
I have a minimal sleep system and no shelter (I need a reasonable weather forecast). I plan to eat extra in the last hour that I'm moving, and to be unconscious within 10 minutes of actually stopping – washing my face, cleaning my teeth and stretching. Startup time in the morning 5 minutes. So I hope to be actually asleep for 3h 45m of that scheduled 4h. If I'm ahead of schedule, I may allocate an extra 15 minutes to get a full 4h.
RalphJul 8, 2015 at 12:28 pm #2213248
The weather is improving from the weekend, and I just got a permit for Saturday.
So this is on for a start Saturday 7/11, leaving at 5am.
The nights will still be chilly, but moderate daytime highs could be a significant benefit.
I'm finalizing and weighing my kit, I'll put up a list this evening.Jul 9, 2015 at 9:40 pm #2213633
I'm starting Saturday morning, but I've set up the SPOT tracker early to make sure it's working. Linky:Jul 9, 2015 at 9:49 pm #2213638
Updated 7/10 to show all past times under 4 days (from Whitney Portal), according to Peter Bakwin's site
http://fastestknowntime.proboards.com/thread/21/john-muir-trail-caJul 10, 2015 at 5:25 am #2213670Ito JakuchuBPL Member
Good luck and have fun!Jul 10, 2015 at 6:19 am #2213675Mike MBPL Member
Ralph said "I'm finalizing and weighing my kit, I'll put up a list this evening."
if you get a chance, we like to look at fast & light kits here :)
Best of Luck!Jul 10, 2015 at 6:26 am #2213677
Kit will be up shortly…
We BPLers are also inveterate tinkerers with our kit!
I kept tweaking things, so I thought I'd wait to put up the final version.Jul 10, 2015 at 6:55 am #2213682Greg MihalikBPL Member
Trust the Plan. Work the Plan.
May the trail god/desses cut you a break.
Best of Luck.Jul 10, 2015 at 9:29 am #2213714Ryan SmithBPL Member
@violentgreenLocale: East TN
Go get 'em Ralph! Best of luck to you.
RyanJul 10, 2015 at 10:05 am #2213730
(It's arranged in packing order as a checklist, rather than by item category.)
The base weight seems high for what I'm doing, but bear in mind –
almost 1lb of electronics, including SPOT, phone, and flashlight with a lot of batteries;
comfortable pack (18oz) with suspension, because I'll be starting with ~13lb of food.
Aside from pack and electronics, there's about 3lb of stuff.
Jul 10, 2015 at 10:37 am #2213734Aaron SorensenBPL Member
@awsorensenLocale: South of Forester Pass
I went no poles on my first unsoppred attempt. Then I brought 3 section poles and thought I would just have them stored in my pack on all the down hills and maybe at night.
I had them out and used them the entire time.
Made a huge difference.
I'm to crazy about weight. Verification cards and leave the rest of the crap at home.
With that, a 14 pound pack starting weight can be had.
I find that it's much easier to jog with 11 or less on your back on the downhills and maintain a faster walk with it as well.Jul 10, 2015 at 11:08 am #2213744
Aaron: 3mph average, 80 hours. Imo, consuming enough food is far more important than running efficiency. In fact, I think running is counterproductive, since it's not required to achieve that average. I don't plan to run at all until I'm over Cathedral (possibly in Lyell) when my pack weight will be under 8lb.
Poles is a subjective one. I know they help a lot of people; they just don't help me, they slow me down when I'm trying to move this fast. I use a pole when I'm off trail for stability, but I've never got to grips with the "routine" two-pole use that many people like on the trail. I would like to have one pole on a few downhills with steep steps, but there's only a few miles like that. And if there's no clear benefit, poles really get in the way of eating and drinking on the move.
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