Daredevil Dean Potter is best known for his free solo climbing ascents, speed ascents, BASE jumping and highlining without safety equipment. Who knew the adventurer was also a runner?
On Sunday, Potter, 43, set the fastest known time for running Yosemite's iconic Half Dome, completing the round trip in 2 hours, 17 minutes, 52 seconds and eclipsing the previous record set by Kyle Williams by nearly six minutes, according to Running Network.
"I took a lesser known path and have indicated an approximation of it on this picture [shown above]," Potter said on his Facebook page. "It's amazing what can happen with the hybridization of outdoor arts such as trail running and climbing."
According to Running Network, Potter combined running, fast-hiking and free solo rock climbing on a new ascent route to the 8,844-foot summit of Half Dome, which rises 4,737 feet above the valley floor.
Potter began at the sign at the trailhead across from the old bridge at the gauging station near Happy Isles and reached the summit in 1:19. The previous record-holder Williams did the summit in 1:27:12, and made the round trip in 2:23:51.
He carried no food or water and wore only a pair of shorts, socks and shoes with Stealth™ sticky rubber. Potter, an Adidas athlete, is a well-known rock climber, BASE-jumper and line-walker and is certainly not known for trail running. A regular runner in his youth, he stopped after becoming a mountain BASE-jumper, where most jumps include lengthy uphill approaches.
Potter has been a Yosemite local since 1993 and has regularly hiked Half Dome over the past 22 years, so he might know the terrain better than anyone, Running Network reported.
"I got a lot of inspiration and encouragement from my friend and ultra-runner Scott Jurek," Potter said. "I'd love to train with him, or another world-class mountain runner, and see if we can lower the record below two hours using my new route."
Potter told Running Network that he plans on running the route weekly until he's able to break the two-minute mark.
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