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

This year, we are introducing the concept of the CATs TrailFest for our late October event at the Miller School of Albemarle. The CATs TrailFest will be comprised of the 5th Annual CATHalf Trail Half Marathon, the 2nd Annual Pounding Creek Trail Marathon, and a new 10K Trail run!

As usual, the races will be run on the beautiful campus of The Miller School of Albemarle.  The courses feature 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.

This year, we also have a new Race Director to oversee the CATs Trailfest: Emily Hatch from Charlottesville Multisports (CMS). Emily has agreed to volunteer her time to RD this race and we are using a CATs Trailfest page on the CMS website as a gateway to register for the race.

Course Description:

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 will all start on Saturday, October 26th, 2019, beginning at 8 am.

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!


Race day information


Start and Finish

Miller School of Albemarle, 1000 Samuel Miller Loop, Charlottesville, VA. 22903

Race Day Schedule (Updated!)

Race day October 26, 2019

6:30-7:45am: Packet Pickup
8:00 am RACE START – All races start

Packet Pickup

Friday October 25th, 10am – 6pm
Crozet Running
1159-B Crozet Avenue
Crozet, VA 22932

  • All finishers will receive a Patagonia Capilene Long Sleeve technical running shirt at the finish line. Sweet!
  • 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 run the race, rain or shine. Cold or Hot.​

Hang around for the fun finish line party! We will have Krispy Kreme donuts, Bodo’s Bagels, coffee, grilled cheese, soup, and other foods at the finish line. Stay for the party!

Price Schedule (CATs member prices in parentheses)
CATHalf Trail Half Marathon $55.00










Pounding Creek Marathon












Trail 10K $35.00










*CATs members: Before registering, go to Member-Only Discount Codes tab under Membership menu on this website and click on your race to receive discount
  • 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: 13.32 mi
Max elevation: 843 ft
Min elevation: 554 ft
Total climbing: 3087 ft
Total descent: -3087 ft

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

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 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.


Ample parking in field to left of main school buildings.

Course Preview



29 thoughts on “CATs Trail Fest (CATHalf, Pounding Creek Marathon, Trail 10k)

  1. Pingback: Registration now open for the CATHalf! | Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

  2. AvatarHeather Clark

    So glad to be able to participate this year. I signed up for the Training Program – but can help if needed.

  3. Pingback: Coming Up Soon: CATHalf Trail Half-Marathon! – Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

  4. AvatarChloe Marsh

    Hi! I registered for the half last weekend but never received a confirmation email. Its highly possible I messed up me email when registering!! I did get a charge for race it, so just wanted to make sure everything was okay!

    1. Avataradmin Post author

      Hi Chloe,

      Yes I do have your registration on file. I going to resend you the confirmation email.
      Looking forward to have you at the race

    1. AvatarChristian Dahlhausen

      Yes we are! It will be on the same weekend. Last Saturday in October.
      Looking forward to have you! Registration will probably open in July.

  5. AvatarChristopher Gould

    I recall hearing that a full trail marathon might be offered in 2017. That would be great! My question today is has a date been set for the 2017 event. I have friends who would like to plan their flights etc. Thanks for any information.

  6. Pingback: Register for the 2017 CATHalf Trail Half-Marathon – Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

    1. AvatarChristian Dahlhausen

      Hi Jim,
      We typically close online registration the day before the event. If you want to get a guarantee for a finisher shirt however you may want to register until 4 weeks before.
      Hope that helps.
      Happy trails,

    1. AvatarChristian Dahlhausen

      Hi Carla,
      The CATHalf has no official cut-offs. You may power-hike the whole thing if you want.
      We just want everybody to have a good time in the woods.

      Hope that helps.
      Happy trails,

  7. Pingback: Race report: CATHalf Trail Half-Marathon | Fix My Labrum

  8. Pingback: 2018 CATHalf Training Program – Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

  9. Pingback: Register now for the CATHalf & Pounding Creek Trail Marathon! – Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

  10. Pingback: Register now for a race at this year’s CATs TrailFest, Saturday, October 26, 2019 – Charlottesville Area Trail Runners

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