Saturday, Aug 27, 2022 @ 10:00 AM

Backyard Squatch Ultra

1 Coursen Road

Branchville, NJ Backyard Ultra

This Event Took Place Sat. Aug 27, 2022


A trail party with no definitive end?! YES, PLEASE!! Join us on Saturday August 19, 2023 at Stokes State Forest for THE BACKYARD SQUATCH! Every hour on the hour, runners will complete the 4.166667 loop. This will go on every hour on the hour until there is only one runner left standing! This trail party is capped at 80 runners, so snag your spot by registering ASAP! The Backyard Squatch is a BRONZE TICKET EVENT. This means that the winner of the Backyard Squatch earns a ticket to the Capital Backyard Ultra in Virginia in May. Please visit our website for the complete details on this race, course maps, gpx files etc!


Check-in between 8:15am-8:45am.

We will be following the Big's Backyard Ultra Rules:
Each loop starts precisely 1 hour after the last
3, 2 and 1 minute warnings will be given prior to the start of each hour
All competitors must start at the bell (no late starts)
Runners who do not make the start will be eliminated, even if they are only 10 seconds late
Except for toilet breaks, competitors may not leave the course until each loop is completed
Each loop must be completed in the same direction for the entire race
No non-competitors are allowed on the course (including eliminated runners and supporters)
No personal aid or support is allowed during a loop (no crewing during a loop)
Each loop must be completed within an hour to be counted, including the final lap

Race HQ is at the Stony Day Use Area at Stokes State Forest in Branchville, NJ. The start/finish area, aid station, portajohns and parking lot are all located here. There is a large covered pavilion and plenty of picnic areas with a lot of grass real estate to have your own individual setup. Runners are allowed a crew but pacers are a major no-no. You are welcome to bring a tent and individual setup but we encourage you to keep it reasonable (don't bring the kitchen sink!). Power outlets are not available, so please plan on bringing your own power source, if needed. We will have a full aid station at the start/finish area that will be serving the full menu of ultra-fare standards! Along with water, food will include cheese quesadillas, ramen, pb&j, bananas, pierogis, watermelon, oranges, chips, pretzels etc etc etc!


Course Maps and GPX files are available on our website. This is NOT an easy course, and it's also not an extremely difficult course. This is a moderate course that very closely replicates the trails at Big's Backyard Ultra in TN! The trail course is 100% singletrack and does have rocks and roots. The road course is NOT flat! Between the hours of 6am-8pm, runners will complete the 4.166667 mile trail lollipop course. This course has 400 ft of elevation gain and is 100% singletrack. The trail course is a lollipop and follows the Blue Mountain Trail and makes a right on Lead Mine Trail, then a left on Coursen Road and another left to get back on the Blue Mountain Trail to return to the start/finish. Between the hours of 8pm-6am, runners will complete the 4.166667 road out and back that also has 400 ft of elevation gain. The road course is an out and back on Coursen Road.


Safety first! Here is a list of required gear items that ALL runners must have with them:
- Headlamp or handheld light for night time road miles
- Red blinking light to be attached to your back for night time road miles - WE WILL SUPPLY YOU WITH THIS AT CHECK-IN


Welcome to Jurassic Park! JUST KIDDING! Stokes State Forest is home to a variety of critters (thankfully, no dinos). So this is your "nature disclaimer". Yes, there are bugs at Stokes, we do recommend bringing bug spray with you. Yes, there are Black Bears at Stokes. Here is what ya need to do if you see a bear during the race (this is from the NJ Dept of Environmental Protection): If you see a bear, make it aware of your presence and use common sense. Never approach the animal; observe it only from a distance. Clapping, talking, singing or making other noise lets the bear know you are nearby. Remain standing, avoid direct eye contact, back up slowly and speak in a calm, assertive voice if you encounter a bear at close range. Do not run. For more information on Bear Encounters:


New for 2022: we have a Facebook Group dedicated to the Backyard Squatch! Join the group to connect with other runners and ask questions. This is where will share updates in real-time during the race! Join the group now!


Q: Can I bring my dog?
A: Sorry, but Spot has to stay at home for this race. Our liability insurance does not cover dogs running our races; thank you for understanding!

Q: Can I sign my kids up for the race?
A: Yes! We want the WHOLE family to come out to our events! Just understand that kids have the same rules as the adults, they have to finish each lap in an hour or less. We have a special discount code for families registering 3 or more Squatches in the same household. Please email us ( before you register so we can give you the code! Once you have the code, be sure to register your child separately and agree to the waiver for minors. And make sure to keep track of little Sally before during and after the race. We only have 1 search-party and they're already out there looking for Sasquatch.

Q: What's the weather like in Branchville, NJ in August?
A: HOT. It's usually warm, in the high 80's / low 90's with high humidity. Be ready for the heat!

Q: What food will you have at the aid station?
A: Along with water, food will include cheese quesadillas, ramen, pb&j, bananas, pierogis, watermelon, oranges, chips, pretzels etc etc etc!

Q: I could get lost in a brown paper bag. Will the course be marked?
A: We will have bright colored ribbons along the course and plenty at all of the turns. We will also have large directional arrows at each turn.

Q: Will I encounter any wildlife on the course?
A: Bears. Beets. Battlestar Gallatica. Stokes State Forest is home to many critters, including black bears, deer, beavers and coyotes. Will you see anything while you're out there? Maybe?!

Q: I don't want to run, are there any volunteer opportunities?
A: Of course! We always need Sassy Volunteers! Email us if you would like to volunteer:

Q: I can’t make it to the race anymore, can I get a refund?
A: Unfortunately we do not offer refunds for our non-refundable registration fee. Thank you for understanding!.

Q: Me and my friend aren't registered for the race, but we're still planning on coming to run. We won't eat from the aid station or take a medal or swag. This is okay, right?
A: NO THIS IS NOT OKAY. This is called being a "race bandit" and it is stealing. Not paying for a race and running the race is stealing from the race organization (even if you're not taking food or swag). Don't do this at a Sassquad trail party or ANY other race. It's not okay. And if you hear about someone else doing this, call them out. If you bandit a race, you will be banned from registering for any of our Sassquad events.


Join the Sassy Volunteer Dream Team! We need help with check-in, aid station, sweeping the course and cleaning up. Are you registered for a race that requires volunteer hours? We can sign-off on the hours that you log at the Backyard Squatch Ultra. We love our volunteer team and we are always looking to add more sassy members to the Volunteer Squad! Email us at if you would like to volunteer!


We want the WHOLE family to come out to our events! We have a special discount code for families registering 3 or more Squatches in the same household. Please email before you register so we can give you the code! Sassquad Trail Running is proud to offer 20% off all events to all active duty military and Veterans and Frontline Workers (Fire, EMS, Healthcare). Please email before you register for an event so we can provide you with a discount code. NYNJ Trail Conference and South Mountain Conservancy members can receive 10% off of registration; please email us for the discount code!


Bring 1 NEW pair of socks to the race. No, this isn't Barkley; we will be hosting a sock-drive at the race! We are partnering with "Soxcess" who distributes new socks to those in need around New Jersey. Since 2018, we have donated over 2,000 pairs of socks to Soxcess. Did you know that socks are the number one requested item at homeless shelters? Invite your friends and families to participate in our sock-drive!!


We are excited to share that our friends over at Skratch Labs are official Sassquad sponsors! We will be proudly serving Skratch Hydration at each of the aid station. Sassquaders can save 20% by using the code SASSQUAD23 at


Thank you to our friends at Sneaker Factory, NJ! Sneaker Factory supports Sassquad Trail Running on and off the trails to help make the events as squatchtastic as possible! The Sneaker Factory is NJ's source for all things running: New Jersey's oldest and most well-known running store, originally opened in Millburn in 1978. Stop by one of our three convenient neighborhood locations and let us help you find the "perfect ride for every stride." Millburn, Florham Park and Basking Ridge.


We are a community of SASQUATCH-lovin' trail runners. Our goal is to provide FUN and challenging events for runners of all ages and paces. We like to think that we have a good sense of humor, a full arsenal of sarcastic wit and useless trivia information. Follow us on Instagram , and like us on Facebook to get all of our Squatchy updates. You can also join our Facebook group, "Sassquad Trail Runners" to connect with other runners and hikers!

Event's current local time: 3:07 PM ET


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