Nate Bender

Trail Runner

Born and raised in western Montana, Nate was lucky to have a family that encouraged a wide variety of outdoor pursuits. Nate grew up in the mountains more often than not, and spent much of his early-to-mid twenties guiding whitewater raft trips in the U.S. and New Zealand and other outdoors-oriented jobs, like working as a photographer for an Alaskan hunting outfitter. 

Nate has a long list of accomplishments and feats. Nate races some ultramarathons, including two 100-mile finishes, but primarily specializes in fastest known time (FKT) challenges. He loves the creative process of dreaming up new routes. His most recent FKT was the first-known continuous linkup of the tallest peaks in Glacier National Park, Montana, a solo and unsupported six-day effort covering 150 miles and nearly 60k feet of ascent. He also accomplished a similar feat in 2018, completing the first-known continuous linkup of the tallest peaks in Montana, connecting the 27 peaks in the state standing taller than 12,000 feet in a four-day effort where all but four miles were off trail. In October 2022, he also finished the inaugural Snowman Race in Bhutan; a five-day high-altitude stage race through the foothills of the eastern Himalayas created specifically to use mountain running as a vehicle to mobilize climate action. The Snowman Race is possibly the highest ultramarathon in the world by average elevation.


Missoula, MT

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How Nate Bender Channels his outdoor pursuits into climate action

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