Hyner Trail Challenge 50k

A challenging spring 25k and 50k trail race through Hyner View SP.

Trail Running Severe

Distance
50 km
Ascent
2.2 km
Descent
2.2 km
Duration
1 day +
Low Point
180 m
High Point
655 m
Gradient
13˚
Hyner Trail Challenge 50k Map

The Hyner View Trail Challenge is one of Pennsylvania's most difficult trail races and a challenge not to be underestimated. While touring some of the state's finest singletrack and Hyner's coveted overlooks, demanding climbs and stream crossing fill the course and the race director notes it as an event "not intended for everyone to be able to participate." If you're up for the challenge, however, here's what you need to know about this spring 25k and 50k event.

Description

Mapped here, the 50k boasts five major climbs with a cumulative 6,500-feet of vert on a course that has evolved through the years. The field is open to 400 registrants, and it's expected that all runners finish within the 10-hour cutoff. The course also follows designated trails throughout the park, meaning you could pre-run the course or explore it in detail throughout any time of the year. Travel to the park can be tricky in winter, however, since ice and snow are common.

For those looking for a challenge, the 50k is also part of the Rocksylvania Trail Series, a cumulation of 25 races broken down into four different divisions: 10k, half, 25k, and ultra. Additional awards and swag are included for those who participate.

If the 50k seems daunting, a 25k option is available for up to 1,000 registrants. Despite the field size, it still tends to sell out each year. Runners are faced with three major climbs totaling 4,000-feet on a course considered "one of the 'funnest' courses in the world," by elite racer Zach Miller. A Colorado runner, Miller also set the course record of 2:06:17 in 2018, 6-minutes faster than PA resident Matt Lipsey, a PA resident.

Noted countless times by the promoter, this is not a beginner-friendly race and not recommended for those questioning whether they can make the time cut-offs. Those registering for the ultra must submit proof they are capable of running 31 miles on trail within a 10-hour time frame - and road runs won't suffice. If participants don't reach the 9-mile course in time, they will be automatically be directed onto the 25k course rather than being pulled from the race.

Of the other need-to-know items, Hyner is a particularly remote town in Central PA, and there is only one road that leads in from Lock Haven. Packet pickup is located at the race start/finish the morning-of, just be sure to arrive early since "parking & registering 1,200 people will take some time." Other information on lodging, camping, and food in the area is available here.

Sources: https://www.patraildogs.com/hyner

Difficulty

Severe

High Exposure

3 out of 4

Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area