Egloff Breaks Speed Record on Denali

Climbing
Karl Egloff (right) and Kilian Jornet on Mount Blanc Photo: carreraspormontana.com

Karl Egloff has set a new speed record on Alaska’s 6,190m Denali, the highest peak in North America. The Ecuadorian-Swiss climber’s scorching time of 11hrs 44 minutes surpassed the 2014 mark set by endurance athlete Kilian Jornet by just one minute.

Egloff completed the ascent in 7 hours and 40 minutes, more than two hours faster than Jornet. “It was hard to believe I was more than two hours faster than Kilian,” he said. But Jornet had skied down, while Egloff chose to do it in hiking boots, snowshoes and running shoes. So despite the two-hour lead, he knew he had his work cut out for him.

“When I got back down to Camp 3, I knew I could do it,” says Egloff. “I started pushing myself. From Camp 3 on, I was watching the watch more than my own safety. I drank two litres of water on the way up but nothing on the way down. I was just going. I got to Base Camp, saw that I was a minute faster and I stretched my hands in the air.”

Karl Egloff conquers Anconcagua in 2017. Photo: Twitter

It is Egloff’s fourth speed climbing record. He has previously set marks on Kilimanjaro (2014), Anconcagua (2015) and Elbrus (2017). He is attempting to set records on the highest peaks of each continent.

Next year, Egloff plans to take on Indonesia’s Puncak Jaya (formerly Carstensz Pyramid), the highest peak on the Australian continent, followed by Mount Vinson in Antarctica. Finally, he will attempt to dash up Everest. “I’ll need to go up and down in less than 22 hours,” he says.

About the Author

Peter Winsor

Peter is a journalist, travel writer and photographer based on the Gold Coast, Australia.

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