10K Course Description
10K Challenge: Part 1 (3.3 miles | +22 feet / -741 ft.)
Runners will start down Evergreen Lane between the pavilion and the clubhouse so make your move fast because the next 2.5 miles is narrow but it is a true gem of a trail. First it’s Black Bear Trail and then a right turn onto Not Fairway. The singletrack is “surprisingly technical” meaning you’ll need to be constantly quick-footed to avoid the pointed rocks that quite possibly are attached to the Earth’s core somehow. Not Fairway is a gradual downhill amid Pennsylvania hardwoods and ferns. Then you make a left turn onto Tree-odge, – get it? Say it aloud – then Code Blue Trail. On the northeastern side of Spruce Knob, these trails with its pine, lush moss, mushrooms and mountain laurel, is reminiscent of the great trails in the northern PA Wilds or Catskills. Not to give away any secrets but you might end up doing a bit of “wilderness parkour” before you are done.
Afterward, you will find yourself on a grassy double track. The fun is about to begin. It’s the first half of Devils Hairpin! Part one is a 650-foot descent in three-quarters of a mile! What makes this even more exciting is that the downhill is wide-enough for two, maybe even three runners wide! If you are brave enough and good at finding a line, this is the place you can pass.
At the bottom, there will be a water-only aid station however; we will also put out some gels as well since the second half of the Devils Hairpin is on deck.
10K Challenge: Part 2 (3.4 miles | +1335 ft. / -603 ft.)
Hyner has Humble Hill and the Megatransect had Raw Trail. Every great PA trail race has its own signature public flogging. We call ours “Throat Punch Hill”! It’s the second half of Devils Hairpin. (Imagine the shape of a hairpin with one zigzag-shaped side and a straight side.) It’s time to go up, my friends. Throat Punch Hill scrambles up Spit Hollow to almost the top of the mountain.
At the end of the climb, it’s a right turn onto an old logging route and about eight-tenths of a mile downhill through the Needle Patch. Bear with me… imagine you are a flea on the back of a dog. The dog hair would look like giant needles sticking in the ground. Well, the trail, with its tall thin saplings, would be like if you were a flea running on a dogs back or over top of a pin cushion. Okay… I am writing this three IPAs in.
Then it’s the final climb. Again to add variety, it is a long – almost 2 mile climb of 900 feet. The course is wide — designed to reward those with climbing ability and patient enough to wait to make their move until later in the race. There is plenty of room to overtake exhausted runners and expect the terrain to be a mix of red clay and lots of loose rock.
Here, on your left is a short uphill scramble before some switchbacks onto a flat and wide logging trail and then a very short singletrack before literally popping out of the woods and a short sprint to the finish.