There is no question that Emelie Forsberg is amongst the most talented and dedicated endurance athletes on the planet. She has numerous world championships and ultra race wins under her belt and has established herself as one of the top sky runners in all of Europe – male or female. But now she’s turning her considerable talents to a new project as she attempts to set a new “fastest known time” on an iconic trail in Swedish Lapland.
Last night, at the stroke of midnight local time, Forsberg set off on her attempt to set a new speed record on the Kungsleden Trail. This 450 km (280 mile) route crosses the Vindelfjällen Nature Reserve, one of the largest protected areas in all of Europe. It also features a number of large rivers to cross, which will require Emelie to not only run, but row along the way as well.
The trail begins in Abisko in the northern part of Sweden and wanders its way south to Hemavan. The popular backpacking route typically takes about 15 days to complete, but Forsberg hopes to be much faster than that. How fast remains to be seen, but she hopes to reach the finish line in as few as five days. Along the way, she’ll be posting updates to Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for those who want to follow her progress.
Kungsleden – which means the “King’s Trail” – holds a special place in Foresberg’s heart. In a press release announcing the FKT attempt she explained the connection, “When I was 19 I used to work in the Saltoluokta mountain hut in the Kungsleden trail, and this is how it started my love for the mountains. In that time I didn’t know I would become a professional trail runner, so I’m very excited to see what my performance can be after all this time. I know it will be a very demanding and emotional journey.”
As of now, she is already out on the trail and making the attempt. Follow along on the social media outlets listed above for updates on her progress.