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Cayuga Trails 50 and Marathon
June 4, 2016
Welcome to the Cayuga Trails 50 and Marathon, presented by Atayne. In only a few years, and with gracious support from generous sponsors, Cayuga Trails has become one of the most competitive 50’s in the country, a US Championship, and one of only a few selection races for the IAU World Trail Team. Beyond the front runners though the real focus is to provide all entrants, regardless of speediness, a chance to run some of the most beautiful trails in our neck of the world. From continuous and sometimes steep ebbs and flows, waterfalls cascading through slot gorges, single track to runnable park service trails, creek crossings to historic stone stair cases that test the limits of lower extremities, it’s truly a gem.
Cayuga Trails uses an out-back C-shape course configuration w/ a lollipop loop on the far end. The out-back configuration was chosen secondary to the FLT extending onto road and fairly unremarkable sections beyond each terminus. The result has allowed entrants to have the opportunity to see the race shaking out ahead and behind them in several points. It starts and ends in Robert H. Treman State Park where it ascends the gorge trail, passing through the Lucifer Fall’s area in the upper gorge and the Finger Lakes Runner’s Club’s Old Mill AS, before wrapping out/connecting with/descending on the Rim Trail. Both sections are double/triple track trail which was intentionally chosen to allow the field to accommodate packs while minimizing potential impact to more sensitive surrounding single-track. Once clearing IronHeart Racing’s Underpass AS runners will cross a creek and ascend single-track through and beyond the Finger Lake Land Trust’s Lick Brook Gorge. From there it feeds through to Buttermilk Falls State Park where it begins the lollipop loop, traversing the upper old reservoir, merging w/ a scenic park road and descending on the old Burma Rd to Trails Roc’s Buttermilk AS. From there it ascends the Buttermilk Gorge Trail on its way back to the start. Fifty milers complete two circuits, 40k’rs one.
The elevation gain is most likely somewhere around 9,000 though GPS devices have recorded as much as 11k+. It’s tough to get a handle on an accurate read given the nature of the tight gorges and inaccurate signals. There are creek crossings around mile 4, 7.5, and 11.5…hit again on the return so the feet will stay wet. Get yourself some good Farm 2 Feet wool socks to stave off the swamp toes.