What an adventure!!!!!!!!!!!
I'm sitting at the Mammoth Library checking email and still processing all that happened during the JMT speed trek... suffice it to say it all went better than I'd ever dreamed it would! I'd originally planned to go for the women's record of ~5.5 days, when a previous record holder Peter Bakwin (his record subsequently broken by Kevin Sawchuk) suggested last winter that I go for the whole enchilada... I figured what do I have to lose?
This was a supported adventure, and my crew of Chris and Deborah (JMT vets both) was stellar -- without them I didn't have a prayer of the record. They met me at the end of each very long day and had the tent set up, "real food" cooked, etc. Mind you, this meant some VERY long approaches for them, in addition to the tent, each carrying TWO sleeping bags, TWO Thermarests, a bear can, my food for the next haul, etc. Deborah joined me for 16 miles thru Evolution Valley at the end of Day #2 and kept me on target. She also was kind enough to accompany me for the entire final day which was over 60 miles between Red's Meadow and Yosemite. If not for her, I think I would have finished but not under the old record. I owe both Chris and Deb BIG TIME!!
Weather was key, and I lucked out. On the day I finished, friends attempting to climb Whitney were turned back due to lightning and drenching rain; I merely got sprinkled on for an hour or so! Also key was backpacking the Trail beforehand. I cannot imagine going into this one blind. It truly is an adventure of the "postgraduate" variety!
I'll compose a full report within a few days. Hopefully my feet won't still look like sausages by then..... :)
* 3 days, 20 hours is my time from Whitney Portal to Happy Isle in Yosemite Valley. My time from the summit of Whitney, i.e. the official southern terminus of the JMT, was 3 days, 15 hours, 32 minutes.