(Note that the info and descriptions below are for the all distances except the 1 mile family fun run/walk. It is also USATF certified, #TN17071MS, and is also shown on the course map linked below.)
All distances are USATF certified (see maps below) and are also internationally certified by IAAF/AIMS. Tennessean winners in all distances will be submitted for inclusion in the Tennessee State ultra records here. A big shout out to the Tennessee record keeper, Buck Jones, for all his work to post and keep up with these. Will you set a Tennessee record? Maybe even a regional, national, or possibly an international record? Come find out!
We’ll have a large course map posted in the Pistol Corral at the school (There is a link to a downloadable version below). The course is a fairly flat, paved, generally eight foot wide greenway that is lit at nighttime. It meanders along the Pistol Creek (hence the name for the event), through Alcoa, by several small bodies of water, and over to Maryville's Bicentennial Greenbelt Park. It is a linear route approximately 5 miles long with a keyhole configuration at the southern end. All distances start at the new Alcoa High School (1205 Lodge Street, Alcoa, TN) and run south about 4.5 miles, then return to the start; then continue north around a half mile, then return to start. The Foothills Striders will be hosting the main aid station at the start/finish and the "Near World Famous" Woody Aid Station (612 LeBlanc Street, Maryville, TN) will be about a half mile from the end of the 4.5 mile southern section. Then the Knoxville Track Club and Perennial Ponds will be hosting a water stop at the halfway point. This means you'll pass an aid station every 1-2 miles on each loop.
There is less than 300’ of elevation change per loop. EASY! ☺
There are numerous side trails. We will have the main route marked with signage, multi-colored chalk markings/duct tape/arrows on the pavement, and possibly cones and/or orange flags on wires stuck in the ground (excluding inside Maryville city limits). Cutting corners or otherwise not running the entire route is not allowed and may result in disqualification.
This is NOT a closed course. There will be people walking their dogs, runners, bikers, baby strollers, etc (depending on the weather and time of day/night). Many wear personal music devices and may be completely oblivious to you approaching. However, they have an equal right to be there too. Let's show them how courteous ultra runners are!
There are a few minor road crossings. Other than the police escort at the start, no one will stop traffic for you. Use common sense (stop, look both ways, etc.). Do not attempt traffic control at intersections. Wait until traffic has cleared before crossing. To avoid misunderstandings and/or other issues, please do not wave "thank you" at traffic crossings inside Maryville city limits.
VERY IMPORTANT NOTE! You have to be able to read and accurately follow directions. We have discovered that this is a major challenge for some people. Each distance has a different course and/or number of loops. Do NOT just follow the runner in front of you. They may be running a different course. There are various distances all running concurrently on the same course. Each race has it's own unique number and/or length of laps. It is your responsibility to make sure you completely understand and follow the correct directions for the distance you are running. While the volunteers may have some idea, they are not responsible for your accurancy! Any deviation from the proper course for your distance will result in your disqualification.
For the relay runners, the exchange point will be just past the start/finish area. All relay legs will be 10.36 miles long (one complete loop out of the three needed for the 50K distance). Three member teams will each run one leg. On a two member team, one runner will run two legs, and the other just one (in any order they decide).
From the Start/Finish line, all runners will continue on the main Greenway Trail down past the the Woody Aid Station and counterclockwise around the loop in front of the Maryville Greenbelt Amphitheater. Then continue back up past the Woody Aid Station to the Start/Finish line. Then continue northeast up to their designated turnaround points and then back to the Start/Finish line. Those running the 50k will do metric loop 3 times and the 100ker's 6 times. The 10 milers complete the imperial loop 1 time, the 50 milers 5 times, the hundo runners 10 times. The 1 mile family fun run/walk is a half mile out and back on the regular course on the northeast side of the Alcoa High School (map is coming).
NOTE: The maps below are of the previous course that was slightly longer on the north end. We will update these as soon as we have time.
MapMyRun Link - http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/322840885
Course Elevation Profile from MapMyRun
Course Map from MapMyRun
Location Map from MapMyRun
Hazards: If the weather is nice, expect to enjoy the trail with other runners, bicyclists, dogs on leash, and small children walking their parents. If the weather is miserable, the trail may be fairly empty except for other crazies….like you. There are a number of wooden bridges on the course. They can be extremely slippery if wet, even worse if icy. Use extreme care when crossing! The creek you may slide into will be extremely cold. There are no extra awards for falling in! J
Flooding: Some of the Greenway Trail is in a flood plain. If there is severe flooding prior to the event, we will have an alternate route (mileage may vary) that will bypass those areas. (See course map.) If flooding occurs during the event, you may need to skirt around/up and over the flooded areas. Be particularly careful if crossing roads, especially at nighttime as the traffic may not see you. The safety of everyone is paramount. This is not a aquathlon event!