October 30 - November 15, 2020
This Event Took Place Sun. Nov 15, 2020

COVID Updates

Due to Covid-19, the 2020 running of the Shut-In Ridge Trail Race will be a virtual race. Registered runners have from 12:00am on October, 30 to 11:59pm on November, 15th to complete their "virtual" race. Runners can complete their "race" anytime of day during this 16-day window. Registration will take place here, on Ultrasignup.
There will be no participant limit.
Participants are not required to race by themselves. Participants may race together, though we are encouraging people to keep group sizes small due to Covid-19.
Finishers will be able to count this year's race towards the "# of Shut-In's completed" in future lottery years.

Cut-Off Times

Due to the virtual nature of this event, there will be no cut-off times, though runners must complete the race in a reasonable time-frame.


All Finishers will receive a long-sleeve Shut-In Finishers Shirt. Shirts and any additional swag will be mailed to participants. Women's specific shirts are available.

Race Day

Registered runners have from 12:00am on October, 30 to 11:59pm on November, 15th to complete their "virtual" race. Runners can complete their "race" anytime of day during this 16-day window.

The Course

New Temporary Course Changes for 2020.

Background: Though we would prefer to race the usual Shut-In Ridge course together, the virtual nature of this event has allowed us to chance the course back to the ORIGINAL Shut-In Ridge Course. We are excited and eager to be able to use the original course because this represents the actual Shut-In Ridge Trail in its entirety (the trail constructed by George Vanderbilt in 1890 that allowed him and family to hike to Pisgah Ridge, the site of his hunting cabin). *CAUTION: HIGHLY CHALLENGING TERRAIN* Please note that this is a race designed for well-trained and experienced trail runners seeking a truly difficult experience. This is ~17 miles of extremely challenging terrain. This is NOT a good “first” trail race.*

Course Details: The first ~2.5 miles of the Shut-In course has been modified to simplify the beginning of the race and avoid the section inside Bent Creek Experimental Forest (many turns on this section). This has caused the overall course distance (16.3 miles) to be about 1.4 miles shorter than in recent years. Don't let the slightly shorter distance fool you, this modified course adds an additional steep hill at 1/2 mile into the race.

START: The 2020 course will begin at the Start of the *original* Shut-In Trail, which is located on the Brevard Road entrance ramp to the Blue Ridge Parkway, about 75 yards uphill from the main entrance to the NC Arboretum. There is a wooden 4'x4' post in the ground with a circular white trail-blaze on it. There is a ~10' section of grass that runners will cross between the pavement and the actual dirt trail. Runners will follow this trail to the end of the Shut-In trail, which is located where the single-track trail meets the grass at the Upper Mount Pisgah parking lot (this is the same as the finish in previous years).

FINISH: The Official race finish will remain the same as in recent years. This is where the dirt single-track Shut-In Trail/Mountains-To-Sea-Trail reaches the mowed grass at the Upper Mt. Pisgah Parking Area. Runners must stop their timing devices once their feet meet the grass and are out of the forest.

ELEVATION: According to GAIA GPS, this year's course has 6,764' of ascent and 3,838' of descent in a total distance of 16.3 miles (1.5 miles shorter that in recent years due to the alternate Start). Follow course map link for an interactive Elevation Profile (screenshot here).

Entries - Special COVID Update

Current-Course Records:
Women - CHERI ROSENBLATT - 2:41:24
Men - SHILOH MIELKE - 2:16:55

Because this is a virtual race, there will be no participant cap. Participants must register by 11:59pm on October 15th, 2020.


The origins of the Shut In race date back to December 13, 1980, when some 64 intrepid men and women assembled to clamor over rocks, roots, and fallen leaves as they followed the trail of the same name originally blazed by George Vanderbilt that led from his home, Biltmore, to his hunting lodge up on Mount Pisgah. Runners have continued that tradition now for 40 years, making Shut In one of the oldest continuous-running races in the region. This year will be the 41th running of the event.

Aid Stations

Due to this being a virtual race, there will be NO aid stations. Particpants must coordinate their own "aid stations". This can involve having your crew meet you at the Blue Ridge Parkway intersections and/or other creative methods.

Support Crew

As with past years, participants are allowed to receive aid from their crew at any of the points where the course intersects the Blue Ridge Parkway.

When you park along the parkway, all four wheels must be off the parkway. If you don't park in this manner, a large fine may be incurred from the park service. DO not direct or stop traffic on the parkway. runners must always yield to cars. Parking for the race is at the lower lot at Mt. Pisgah and a lot 1/4 mile down the parkway from the Mt. Pisgah turn off. You can also park along the road leading up to the finish line and the parkway itself. Runners are responsible for their own transport back after the race.

Local time: 2:27 PM


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