Woman breaks Appalachian Trail speed record

She did it.

North Carolina's Jennifer Pharr Davis has set the record for the fastest thru-hike of the 2,181-mile Appalachian Trail, male or female.

Her north-to-south hike, which began atop Maine's Mount Katahdin on June 15, ended Sunday afternoon, when Davis reached the summit of Springer Mountain in Georgia.

It took her 46 days, 11 hours and 20 minutes. The previous record, set by Andrew Thompson in 2005, was 47 days, 13 hours and 31 minutes.

Davis already held the women's record, which she set in 2008 on her second thru-hike of the AT: 57 days, 8 hours, 13 minutes.  Her first end-to-end adventure, was the subject of her 2010 memoir, "Becoming Odyssa.

Although short in time, her hike was filled with battles with bugs, blast-furnace heat and painful injuries that threatened to derail the attempt. She started around 5 a.m. each day and finished many days after dark and averaged 3 mph.

Photos and a blog about her record-setting hike are at her website

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