Colorado Springs' Allie McLaughlin visited Alaska for the first time over the July 4 weekend.
She left with her name in state history — and mountain running history.
That was after setting a record in one of the globe's most renowned short-distance foot races, Mount Marathon.
After 3 miles round trip up and down a notoriously steep and treacherous mountain face, McLaughlin crossed the finish line in downtown Seward in 47 minutes and nine seconds. That bested the previous all-time women's mark of 47 minutes and 48 seconds set in 2015 by Emelie Forsberg, the world champion out of Sweden.
McLaughlin joined her and famed Alaskan Allie Ostrander as the only women to ever finish the century-old race in under 50 minutes.
At the end of the Independence Day tradition, McLaughlin was a stunning five minutes ahead of the next-closest competition.
"Since 2014, kind of when I started mountain running, I had heard about (the race) from so many people," said McLaughlin, an Air Academy graduate who has raced for national teams. "I was always like, Oh, one of these days."
But setting the record? McLaughlin said she only joked about that when people asked about her goals.
Just as it is one of the nation's oldest foot races — tracing its roots to a bet between miners in the early 1900s — Mount Marathon is also considered one of the most brutal. The route traverses cliffs and loose rock as it climbs almost 3,000 feet in about 1½ miles. Many finish muddied and bloodied, as McLaughlin did.
"Going up is one thing, but a lot of races don't have this crazy downhill," she said.
It wasn't like her home race in which she's a regular top finisher, the Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon, "where it's a pretty smooth trail," she said. "Mount Marathon, it's like every step you have every potential to kind of get out of control and fall."
McLaughlin credited her success to training on the Manitou Incline, going up and down her local extreme set of ties.
The history-making was "really cool," she said, but even cooler was to have her name by Forsberg and Ostrander.
"To be in that category now, it feels good," McLaughlin said. "I don't have anything to prove to anyone, but it's always fun to have respect from other people in the community."