You can find pictures of the 2021 race at the link below
There may be some changes to the number of water stations, shuttles and packet pick up due to VA Covid restrictions at the time. We will take every precaution to make this event as safe as possible and to follow all the CDC guidelines at the time. Please watch for updates closer to race day. As of right now there is a mask mandate for anyone in a NP and this race is in a NP so mask will be required.
What to expect on Race Day
Come enjoy us for a very scenic race down the mountain. This course is well known to bikers, hikers, runners, and walkers. If you love the mountains you will love this course. It is mostly gravel and travels along an old railroad bed. It winds through the mountains along a creek and through several little towns.
Timing will be through uptrasignup.com
The trail is well used during the spring, summer, and fall months so we will be sharing the trail with other outdoor lovers. Most people share the trail very well and with the race beginning at 7:00 am traffic on the trail should be a minimum most of the way.
At the finish line you can expect to be greeted with a smile and potentially a fast time. There will be drinks, and food for all participates at the finish. The awards will also be handed out at the finish line within a few minutes of finishing.
This is a certified marathon course! VA19001MS
The course will start at Whitetop station in Jefferson National Forest near mile marker 33.4 and finish near Alvarado mile marker 9.3. Runners will begin at Whitetop station and run down the mountain though Damascus and continue about a half mile miles past Alvarado to the turn-around point and back to the finish line near Alvarado. Alvarado is around 25.2 miles from the starting line at Whitetop. The trail is an old railroad bed that has been converted from a "rails to trails" with a gravel surface and starts at an elevation of 3500 feet and descends to 1755 ft in Alvarado.
Green Cove- mile marker 30.6 (2-3 volunteers)
Camp Creek Junction- mile marker 27.1
*Taylor’s Valley- mile marker 22.9
Straight Branch- mile marker 20.3
*Damascus- mile marker 16
Side of the trail- mile marker 12.5
*Alvarado- mile marker 9.3
* Stations have water, Gatorade, some snacks
Whitetop station, Green Cove, Taylor's Valley, Straight Branch, Damascus, and Alvarado all have outdoor toilets.
No strollers or dogs allowed.
Information about shuttle, start, finish, and final details will be sent through email about two weeks before the race. Packet pickup will be at the finish line on Friday April 9th from 5-6pm. Packets not picked up Friday will be at the shuttles the morning of the race.
Start and Finish line
The start and finish line are in two different locations completely.
Start: Whitetop startion- Whitetop Gap Road, Whitetop, VA 24292 (note this is not Whitetop Mountain but the community of Whitetop, VA)
Finish: Alvarado Station-21198 Avarado Road, Abingdon, VA 24211
Because of the unique nature of this race we will be offering a shuttle to runners to the start. If you choice to drive to the start you will need someone to drop you off and meet you at the finish.
Elevation at Whitetop Station is about 3500 ft
Elevation at Alvarado is 1755 ft
Awards will be given to the top 3 overall finishers for both male and female. Awards will also be given to the winner in each of the following age groups 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and up for both male and females. All finishers will receive a finishers ornament/medal (if registered by March 25th).
You must be 18 years old by the day of the race to register.
Shuttles, T-shirts, and finishers awards
Shuttle to the start, t-shirts and finishers award are only guaranteed for entries before March 25th.
Where is my entry fee going?
Your entry fee will first be used to get insurance, t-shirts, awards, snacks and everything else needed for a great race day. All profit from this event will go to a local high school CC team for summer camp. So this is sort of a fundraiser for a local team. Summer camps are really expensive and sometimes exclusive to those that can't afford to go. One hundred percent of the profit from this race will be donated to a local high school CC team.
With the cost associated with hosting an event such as this we will not be giving refunds. Last year we did issue refunds due to the unexpected situation with Covid, but are planning to run as scheduled this year with whatever restrictions required to do so safely.
Great lodging is different for everyone. Some people like nice places to stay, others like being close to the start or finish and others like cheaper rooms. Myself, I prefer all of the above. Since I live here I can't give you much insight on the list below. I do hope you find something that makes you happy. Damascus is between the start and finish line but there is a limited amount of lodging and food. Abingdon is a little further but has more to offer in the way of both lodging and food.
Local time: 3:49 AM
Here is a list of what I can find with phone numbers. These are in no specific order.
Lodging in Damascus:
A Humble Abode https://ahumbleabode.webs.com/ (276) 475-5472
Laurel Creek RV Park
Creeper Trail Cottages
Lodging in Abingdon: (10.4 miles from finishline in Alvarado)
Country Inn and Suites by Radisson, Abingdon
The Martha Washington Inn and Spa
Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott Abingdon
Hampton Inn Abingdon
Quality Inn & Suites
Comfort Suites (276) 698-3040