During the late 80's and early 90's I had to make frequent trips into Western Virginia for work and one of my favorite places to visit while I was out there was Damascus VA. At the time I had never heard of the Virginia Creeper or the Iron Mountain Trail but I was very happy to find them as well as the Appalachian trail which I already knew about.
I did some running on all three trails and really love the area so when I heard Eric Grossman was starting a 50 miler there a few years ago I was excited and hoping to run it sometime when I could squeeze it into my schedule. Well, sometime has come as I will be heading out there this Friday afternoon for the race on Saturday. Eric moved but some others wanted the race to continue so Kevin Townsend stepped up to be the new race director.I met Kevin at Holliday Lake several years ago and many other of Horton's races since then so it will be nice to see him and run his race.
It will be a tough one,with about 8,000ft of climbing over a mix of single track and jeep roads. It also has a 12 hour cut-off making it even more difficult for getting an official finish. Even Horton has said it is harder than MMTR. We shall see. I know that one thing that will make it harder for me is the warmer weather. The high is going to be in the mid 80's and will probably be humid. MMTR is usually cold with really nice mid day temps.
Unfortunately none of the Angels or Princesses will be making this trip but I will have several friends there that will be running. My goal is really just to finish and have fun. There will be no online updates. This is a low key event with aid at a bargain price, much like the MTC events.
Here is the race website. Check out the race video. I will have some pics and a report for you soon afterwards.