CATs Trail Fest (CATHalf, Pounding Creek Marathon, Trail 10k)


Join us for the 2021 CATs TrailFest on Saturday, October 23, 2021. This will be the 6th year for our trail races at the Miller School of Albemarle. The 2021 TrailFest will again be comprised of the CATHalf Trail Half Marathon, the Pounding Creek Trail Marathon, and a 10K Trail run!

The beautiful campus of The Miller School of Albemarle features challenging climbs, miles of sweet single-track trails, and spectacular vistas of the Blue Ridge mountains.  Don’t miss your opportunity to experience these unique trails by registering for one of the races now.


The CATHalf is a one-loop half-marathon with over 2500′ of vertical climbing. The Pounding Creek Marathon adds a second loop of the half-marathon course.  The 10-K will race will provide a shorter, but no less breathtaking experience on the Miller School Trails. 

The three races are all planned to start on Saturday, October 23rd, 2021, beginning at 8 am.  Please watch for updates in case we have to do a staggered start.

Prizes will be awarded to top finishers, age group winners, as well as random runners in each race and, of course, there will be a fun and festive party at the race finish! The trails are maintained by students on the Miller School of Albemarle Endurance Team and we organize this race together with the MSA Endurance Team coach, Andy Guptill. A significant portion of the proceeds benefit the MSA Endurance Team.

Register Now!

Sorry, no refunds.  You may transfer to a different TrailFest race by contacting us through the Registration link above, and clicking the Questions box. To transfer to the longer race you will have to pay the difference of the current race registration fee and what you originally paid.  No charge to switch to a shorter race.  To help us with finisher shirt orders, please try to request the transfer a month in advance, if possible.


Race day information


Start and Finish

Upper Field at Miller School of Albemarle

Race Day Schedule

Race day October 23, 2021

NOTE:  Everything here is subject to change due to any COVID-19 safety precautions that may still be in place.  For example, the aid stations may be limited to self-serve with limited fare.  Start times may be staggered.

6:30-7:45am: Packet Pickup
8:00 am RACE START – All races start (subject to change).

Packet Pickup

Currently, only race day packet pickup is available.


  • All finishers will receive a sweet tech shirt at the finish line.
  • There will be prizes for top finishers and age group winners.
  • We also have fun prizes and swag to give away randomly!
  • Approximate award times:
    11:00 am 10K
    11:30 am CATHalf
    2:00 pm PC Marathon

We will hold the race no matter the weather.​  Of course after 2020 we’ve learned that sometimes there are circumstances beyond our control, but we are fully committed to having the race.

Hang around for the fun finish line party! We expect to have the usual post-race food spread at the finish line. Stay for the party!


Price Schedule (CATs member prices in parentheses)

    Jan 8 – Jun 4, 2021 Jun 5 – Aug 6, 2021 Aug 7 – Sep 23, 2021 Sep 24 – Oct 22, 2021 Race Day, October 23, 2021
CATHalf Trail Half Marathon   $55.00










Pounding Creek Marathon   $60.00








Trail 10K   $40.00










*CATs members: Your member discount will automatically be applied through Runsignup.

No refunds.  See above for our transfer policy.

  • Surface: Mostly wooded single-track and mowed meadows with some gravel-road sections
  • 3 well-stocked aid stations per loop
   CATHalf Half- Marathon Pounding Creek Marathon 10K
 Distance ~13.1 miles ~26.2miles ~6.2mi+
 Elevation gain ~2,500 ft ~5,000 ft tbd
 Cutoff 7 hours 7 hours 7 hours
Total distance: 12.61 mi
Max elevation: 853 ft
Min elevation: 558 ft
Total climbing: 2730 ft
Total descent: -2726 ft
Download file: CATsTrailFestCourse2019_4193989731.gpx

The course is subject to minor change as conditions allow.

The course is awesome – but tough! The CATHalf is one loop, the Pounding Creek Marathon adds a second time around the loop in the same direction. The 10K course will follow a segment of the loop, but cut back earlier.* Runners can expect mostly rolling wooded single track, with periods of field running and a little time on gravel roads. While there are no HUGE long climbs, there is a lot of climbing and descending in small bites throughout the race (see elevation profile above) with a total amount of climbing of ~2500 feet per loop. Pace yourselves, this course will wear you down and beat you up!

CUTOFF times
– PC Marathon — 7 hours
– CATHalf — no cutoff (if finished in less than 7 hours)
– 10K — no cutoff (if finished in less than 7 hours)
– Marathon runners must your their first loop (i.e., the half marathon) in 3.5 hours.
– Cutoffs at 2nd loop aid stations if you don’t appear to be on pace to finish in 7 hours, are as follows: Puke Hill/Burke @ 14.7 miles: 4 hrs, Upper Meadows @ 18.6: 5 hrs, Upper Meadows @ 20.4: 5:30 hrs, Puke Hill/Burk @23.1: 6hrs 10 mins. Judgements to pull somebody that do not make a cut-off will be made by aid station volunteers based on how runner looks and feels, if runners are falling way off pace, weather, etc.

Aid stations [UPDATE]

Aid station fare is subject to change based on health conditions at race time.  Be aware that you may need to be more self-sufficient.  We will update this much closer to race day.

There will be two aid stations on the course per loop. There will also be an aid station at Mile 13.1 (start/finish). The mileage on the aid stations is as follows, roughly: 1.6 (Puke Hill/Burke Run), 5.5 (Upper Meadows AS), 7.0 (Upper Meadows AS), 10.0 (Puke Hill/Burke Run), and 13.1 (Start/Finish).
Aid stations will have water, sports drink, and a few trail race classics planned such as soda, M&Ms, Gummy Bears, and chips. We may also have gels, but please be sure to bring your own favorite if you prefer to fuel with gels.

We suggest carrying handheld water bottles or a hydration pack in order to limit your cup usage on the course as well as to make hydrating easier between aid stations.

*Stay tuned for a map containing the 10K route and cut-back!


Google map location is here. Note that the entrance is off of Dick Woods Road, not Miller School Road.


Ample parking available in the fields right next to the Start/Finish.