DC Metro Challenge


Hi all! I’m James Forcier, and I’ll be taking over DC Metro Challenge from this point forward. Most importantly, I’ll be adding a separate ranking section that includes the first phase of the Silver line. I look forward to seeing new routes, now that the Silver line adds to the challenge.

In addition, I’ll be participating in an attempt tomorrow, the 2nd. We’ll be starting from Shady Grove at around noon, and progress will be live-tweeted from @TJ_CSL, so be sure to follow along!

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I’m pleased to announce that Adham Fisher is going to be taking over DC Metro Challenge! Adham has an established record of excellence in mass transit endurance, and I know he’s eager to see what DC can handle. I’ll still be involved with DC Metro Challenge from a technical and logistical standpoint, but Adham’s going to be driving the train from now on.

Good luck, Adham! I can’t wait to see where you take DCMC.


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It’s a busy week for DC Metro Challenge! John Teneyck was the first challenger yesterday and broke the record in a yet to be confirmed 7 hours and 9 minutes. Official confirmation from WMATA and more details on that attempt will come soon.

Today, however, another challenger steps up to the plate! Monica Li is a 22 year old U.Va. Chemistry student from Centreville, VA. She will start her attempt at noon today, using a route identified on reddit last week. The route’s projected to come in around 6 hours, which would beat the official record and John’s from yesterday if she’s successful. She’ll be live-tweeting her progress all day long on her handle: @1337_chemist, and the DC Metro Challenge account will also cover her progress. Learn more about Monica below:

Monica Li

Monica Li

Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Monica, and I am a 22-year-old college student from Centreville, VA. I’m just a month away from graduating from UVA with a degree in Chemistry. I’ll be headed off to pharmacy school in the fall, but my dream is to become an air traffic controller at one of the area’s three airports. To that end, I will also be completing a program that will make me eligible to apply to the FAA.

When did your interest in Metro start? How does Metro fit into your life now?

I fell in love with Metro during the summer of 2007, when I rode it daily from Vienna to White Flint for an internship. Instead of dulling the experience, riding the Metro every day veritably enriched it. I never brought along anything to do during the ride, so I became finely attuned to the intonations of the announcers, the behavior of commuters, the art of timing naps to terminate at Metro Center, and that floating feeling of soaring over eight lanes of traffic on a bridge where the railing is too low to be seen. Since then, I’ve ridden the Metro on a daily basis for two more summers, and in 2008, a friend and I made a successful, untimed exploit to visit all the stations in one day.

Metrorail, and communal transportation in general, intrigues me because everyone in the system has an individual path and is and distinctly anonymous, yet we are brought together for a few minutes or hours because of a common purpose and a fact of life: we need to get somewhere. This fundamental interest in transportation is one of the reasons why I want to pursue a career in aviation.

Sadly, as I’ve been away from the DC area for the past few years, my recent involvement with Metro has been minimal. I’ve been following the progress on the Silver Line construction, and I especially hope it will be finished if and when I end up as a controller at Dulles – the prospect of driving to Dulles every day sounds awful!

What route do you plan to use in your attempt?

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Just two days old and DC Metro Challenge has already attracted a growing pack of challengers!

(New to DCMC? Here’s the blog post that started it all)

In additional to Daniel yesterday, Christopher, Monica, Meggie, Liz, and (another) Daniel have come forward and think they have what it takes to beat my record. Once they each set a date for their attempt, you’ll find pre/during/post coverage here at DCMetroChallenge.com. Secretly, I hope some of them team up Amazing Race-style.

A vision for what the cast of a DC Metro Challenge reality series could look like

In other news, DC Metro Challenge was featured on the BUZZ blog at The Washington Post. DCMC also got a shout out on Greater Greater Washington this morning, and someone in a post on reddit came up with a better route than the one I used in my attempt.

A new way to get involved with DC Metro Challenge is coming this weekend (and it doesn’t involve sitting on trains for seven hours). Stay tuned on Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates!


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What an amazing first day! DC Metro Challenge’s launch surpassed my expectations – thank you all for your interest!

The highlight of the day was confirming my first challenger: Daniel will take the DC Metro Challenge this fall before he starts law school. I also connected with some great people on Twitter and Facebook. And one of them found the words to sum up DC Metro Challenge that I’ve been searching for:

Another highlight today was the discovery of a previous attempt, documented in a Dr. Gridlock column from 2001. The exact route he took is unclear, but it looks like he clocked in at 7 hours, 48 minutes – so my record stands another day.

Such a great response on this first day has me thinking about even better ways I can grow DC Metro Challenge. This is just the beginning!


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Welcome to DC Metro Challenge! After months of research and development, DCMC is launching today.

A few months ago I rode to every station in the Metrorail system continuously, and set a new record at 7:27:49. Read all about my attempt in my main blog post.

After finding no official record keeping authority for my attempt, I decided to create DC Metro Challenge. This site chronicles my attempt and will cover future challengers as they seek to dethrone me. I hope they get more out of the experience than their name on a digital plaque, though. Check out the about page to learn why I created DC Metro Challenge and how I want it to grow.

And don’t forget to connect with DCMC on Facebook and Twitter – I’ll be active on both all day today.


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