Race Details



            Friday Sprint maps will be 1:4000, 2.5 meter contours for all courses.

            Long and Middle Maps will be 1:10,000, 5 meter contours for most courses.  Some courses (white, yellow, brown) at Carter Caves (Sat and Sun only) may be printed at 1:7500 (to be determined).

            See the description of each day below for more specifics.



            All standard USA courses and classes will be offered. 


Control Descriptions

            Control descriptions are printed on your map.  Loose description sheets may be picked up when you enter the call-up area, 2-3 minutes before your start.   Descriptions for white and yellow courses are in English only.  Descriptions for orange course and above are in IOF symbols only.


Control Markers

            Control markers will be IOF standard orange and white flag.  Control markers will have a blue stripe, either diagonal or vertical.


Course Length (km) and Climb (m) Table (subject to change)

Lengths are straight line, climb is along “optimal” route.



Friday – Sprint


Saturday – Long

Carter Caves

Sunday  - Middle

Carter Caves


Course Setter

Ben Hart

Shin Shimizu

Dave Waller

1 White

F-10, F-12, F white, M-10, M-12, M white, Group white

1.4 km, 35m,

14 controls

2.8 km, 120m, 11 controls

1.9 km, 85m, 9 controls

2 Yellow

F-14, F yellow, M-14, M yellow, Group yellow

2.0 km, 45m, 15 controls

3.8 km, 165m, 13 controls

2.1 km, 100m, 11 controls

3 Orange

F-16, F orange, M-16, M orange, Group orange

2.3 km, 50m,

18 controls

4.7 km, 250m,

13 controls

3.8 km, 190m, 16 controls

4 Brown A

F65+, F70+, F75+, F brown, M 75+, M brown, all 80+ classes

2.0 km, 45m, 16 controls

3.6 km, 170m, 10 controls

3.0 km, 155m, 14 controls

5 Brown B

F-18, F55+, F60+, M65+, M70+

2.0 km, 45m, 16 controls

4.2 km, 225m,

10 controls

3.5 km, 205m, 15 controls

6 Green A

F35+, F40+, F45+, F50+, F green, M green

2.4 km, 70m, 17 controls

6.0 km, 290m, 12 controls

3.8 km, 220m, 17 controls

7 Green B

F-20, M-18, M50+, M55+, M60+

2.4 km, 70m, 17 controls

6.4 km, 320m, 12 controls

4.3 km, 250m, 18 controls

8 Red

F-21+, M-20, M35+, M40+, M45+, M red

2.7 km, 70m, 20 controls

9.1 km, 480m, 15 controls

4.4 km, 260m, 21 controls

9 Blue


3.1 km, 80m, 22 controls

12.0 km, 675m, 22 controls

5.2 km, 290m, 23 controls


Start Procedures

            Clear and check your SI card when you arrive in the start area.

            You will be called up 3 or 4 minutes before your scheduled start.

            2 minutes before your start, you will move forward and may pick up loose control descriptions.   White and yellow may pick up their maps, mark name/number, and preview the map.

            1 minute before your start, you will move forward to the map line.  You may mark your name / number on the back of the map.  Do not look at your map (white/yellow may preview map).  You may ask the starter to check that it is the correct course.

            When the beeper sounds, you punch “start” and pick up your map.

            There may (or may not) be a short streamered run to the start triangle shown on your map (to be determined).  You must run to the triangle.  There is a flag but no punch at this point.  At this point you may begin navigating to your first control.


Drinking Water on Courses

            FRIDAY: There will not be water on the sprint course.

SATURDAY: There will be at least one water stop on long courses of yellow length and above.  Please use the cups provided and dispose of them in the bag or bin provided.   Some water stops will be at controls.  There will be one water stop on orange and brown on a trail (not at a control).  There will be two water stops on trails (not at controls) on green and above.   Yellow, Green B, and Red will have 1 additional water stop at a control.  Blue will have 2 additional water stops at controls.   There will be no water provided on the white course.

SUNDAY: There will be one water stop on the middle courses of orange length and above.  The water stop will be located on a trail (not at a control) at 1.8 to 2.8 km into your course.   Please use the cups provided and dispose of them in the bag or bin provided.  There will be no water provided on white or yellow.


Time Limits

            Time limit will be 1 hour for the Sprint on Friday, 3 hours for the Long on Saturday, and 2 hours for Middle Distance on Sunday.



Friday – Morehead State University


            Maps: Sprint Distance, ALL maps will be 1:4,000, 2.5 meter contours, north lines are spaced at 120 meters apart.


            Parking is a large lot, 100 m to registration, 250 m to finish


            Restrooms will be modern, indoor.


            Walk to the start is 500 meters, flat.


            Course notes and special symbols:

                        ISSprOM standards.  Know what you are allowed to cross (or not).

                        On Friday afternoon, roads and parking lots may be busy with students and staff leaving campus.  Please exercise extra caution crossing roads and parking lots.   Don’t assume that drivers will respect you just because you are in a crosswalk or they have a stop sign.

                        There are several emergency call boxes around campus.  Obviously, they should be used only for serious emergency.  They are not shown on the map.

                        On the control description sheets, paved sidewalks are described as “path”, not road.         


Saturday and Sunday – Carter Caves State Park


            Saturday Long


                        Maps: Long Distance, ALL maps will be 1:10,000, 5 meter contours, north lines are spaced at 250 meters apart.

                                    White, Yellow, Orange and Brown maps are 8.5 x 11 inches, portrait.  White and Yellow have descriptions in both English and Symbolic.

                                    Green maps are 11 x 17 inches, portrait.

                                    Red and blue maps are 8.5 x 11 portrait, but they are 2-sided.  You will use the front of the map, then flip the map to complete the course.

                                    Note for white and yellow: On the description sheets, paved paths (for example old cart paths on the former golf course) are described as “road”.


                        Event Check-in    Check in (and recreational registration) will be at the lodge.


                        Finish   The finish will be about 300 meters from the lodge near the old tennis courts.


                        Parking   At the lodge, Please leave the parking spaces in front of the lodge for lodge guests.  Park either in the parking lot to the right before the lodge, or continue past the lodge through the turnaround circle, and up the hill to the golf course parking lot.   Cottage and campground guests are encouraged to walk from your lodging, since parking at the lodge is very limited.  Please walk along the roads and do not cut across the old golf course or through the woods.  Please park “tight” and carpool if possible.


                        Walk to the Start   White and Yellow courses will start less than 300 meters from the lodge.  Walk up the hill to the old golf course clubhouse (now a ranger station) where the Maze-O will be set up.  Your call-up area will be near the ranger station and Maze-O.   Orange, Brown, Green, Red and Blue courses will have a 2 kilometer road walk, beginning with an uphill segment, then mostly flat past the campground areas.


                        Restrooms   Modern restrooms are inside the lodge.  There are also modern restrooms in the horse campground, just under 250 meters before the start area for orange and above.


                        Clothing Return   Warm-up clothing may be left at the call-up areas, and will be returned to the finish area.


          Sunday Middle


                        Maps: Middle Distance, All maps except brown will be 1:10,000, 5 meter contours, north lines are spaced at 250 meters apart.  Brown maps will be at 1:7500.   All maps except brown will be on 8.5 x 11 landscape.  Brown will be on 11x17 landscape.


                        Event Check-in    Check in (and recreational registration) will be adjacent to the swimming pool.


                        Finish   The finish will be adjacent to the swimming pool.


                        Parking   Parking is at the swimming pool.  Please be exceptionally careful approaching and leaving the pool area as runners on all courses will be crossing the road.  Lodge guests are encouraged to walk from the lodge, since the number of parking spaces at the pool is also limited.  Please park “tight” and carpool if possible.   Beginning from sunrise on Sunday, lodge guests (and others) may use the trail to walk west of the lodge across Smoky Bridge to the pool area, but please stay on the trail directly to the pool parking lots.


                        Walk to the Start   All courses will have a walk of around 600 meters from the finish to the start.  There are no restrooms closer to the start.  After passing the clothing drop, you’ll have a short trail walk to a path junction.  From that junction, orange, brown, green, red and blue runners will proceed straight ahead for just a few meters to their call-up line.  White and yellow will turn to the right and walk about 100 meters up the path to Shangri-la Arch.  Parents and any other participants may also go visit Shangri-la Arch.  The white/yellow call-up line is under Shangri-la Arch.  After being called up, white and yellow runners ONLY will ascend a steep wooden staircase to the top of Shangri-la Arch, where they will get loose descriptions and maps.  Runners not on white/yellow may not go up the steps to the top unless they will be shadowing a white or yellow runner on the course.


                        Restrooms   The modern block restrooms at the pool area should be open for our event.  If they are not, we will bring in portable toilets.  There are no restrooms closer to the start.


                        Clothing Return   Warm-up clothing may be left where the path leaves the small paved turn-around 150-200 meters before the call-up areas, and will be returned to the finish area.



            Map and Course Notes for both Saturday and Sunday


            The Carter Caves map was made for the 2015 U.S. Middle and Long Championships.  It had minor updates for another event in early 2019.  The map is still excellent, with just a few minor recent edits to vegetation, paths, and a few manmade features.  The golf course was closed in 2018, and is mapped as open (very runnable) and rough open (taller grasses, but except for a few very small patches is not difficult to cross).


            Terrain is very steep and rocky.  In places, there are rock cliffs as high as 20 meters or more.  Be extremely careful approaching any mapped cliff from above.  There are also several natural arches, and you may cross either over or under some of them on your courses.


            Carter Caves is named for its many caves.  Some of them are huge openings in the sides of hills; others are just holes in the ground, with the bottom of unknown depth in the darkness far below.  A black “v” symbol (rocky pit) may be a large, visible pit, or it may simply be a hole in the ground.  In either case, exercise extreme caution, as the pit may be quite deep.  Some small depressions (brown u) and pits (brown v) may also have openings in the bottom.


            White and light green vegetation is generally quite runnable.  Medium green may be younger, denser trees or patches of brambles, but usually is also not too difficult to cross.  There are a few areas of rhododendron or mountain laurel, mapped as medium or dark green.  Advanced courses may see some larger areas of medium to dark green which may be scrubbier and thornier.


            Rootstocks are not mapped.  There are many, and some are enormous, but you won’t see them on the map.


            Horses may be encountered on either day.  Please yield trails to horses and avoid startling horse or riders.   If the trail is on a slope, you should move off to the lower side of the trail if possible.  Stop or walk (don’t run) and talk to the rider and horse in conversational tone.


White Course Note:   The white course will go off-trail between two controls on Saturday.  A route between these two controls is marked with white streamers.  The white course will go off trail for two consecutive legs (three controls) on Sunday.  Again, the route between these controls will be marked with white streamers.  Your control descriptions will indicate the streamered leg(s) and the connection lines on the map are dashed.


            Embargo Note:  After finishing Saturday’s Courses, …Embargo will be lifted for the areas that are to the east of Caveland Drive (road from the visitor center to the lodge) and/or north of Cave Branch Rd, so that you may visit or re-visit these spectacular locations such as Raven Bridge, Fern Bridge, Laurel Cave, Horn Hollow, Bat Cave Nature Preserve, and the rappelling / rock climbing area.



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updated 2023-03-21 at 0115