POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - A Pocatello man spent his Labor Day weekend climbing Idaho's tallest mountains. In a little more than three days, he climbed all of Idaho's 12,000-foot peaks.
Nine peaks, three mountain ranges, around 78 hours. That was Kelly Lance's journey. He started in the Lemhi Mountain Range at Diamond Peak, then the next seven peaks were all in a row in the Lost River Mountain Range and the finish was line was the Pioneer Mountains in Sun Valley.
Though climbing all the tallest peaks has been done before, Lance wanted to do it a little differently. Normally, Lance said people do the peaks as a speed test to see how fast they can do them all. So it's common to use a car or at least a bicycle. But Lance didn't. He went from peak to peak all on foot. He either walked or ran into between each peak and mountain range. That is a first.
"It's so far removed from me mentally right now, it hasn't settled in and I'm still trying to process it," Lance said of his entire journey.
When asked why he did it, Lance said he's not really sure.
"I thought that's a question I would answer myself while I was doing it and I still don't know," Lance said. "But a couple years ago, some guys I know did a fantastic job with the speed attempt. And kind of jokingly I said 'Nobody's ever done it without a car.' Once I said it, I couldn't get it out of my mind. I had to do it. Wanted a project to put me out of my comfort zone a little bit because I'm not a climber. And it did the job."
Lance spent a couple of years planning and scouting his route, training physically for the long, slow hikes and preparing for the entire journey.
Lance said his family has been the best support system through this and that's what matters to him.
"I'm proud," Lance said. "I'm more proud that my daughters can say I did it. I want to give them things to reflect on when they're my age and think that was special. For me, I just think it's cool that my daughters think it's cool. "
Lance hopes others will follow in his footsteps and do the peaks the way he did. He said for those who are thinking about it, or thinking about another type of adventure, there's one piece of advice he has.
"Just do it," he said.
Lance is currently a captain with the Pocatello Fire Department.