Welcome to the Dahlgren Heritage Rail Trail 50 km. This race is scheduled for the first Saturday in August each year.
We thank our volunteers from the Dahlgren Railroad Heritage Trail Association, King George Amateur Radio Operators, Northern Virginia Gun Club, King George Fire and Rescue and King George Sheriff Departments.
The race starts at mile post 0 at the east end of the parking lot.
There are mile posts every ½ mile with mile post 0 in the west up to mile post 14.5. You can see mile post 0 at the start/finish line. Posts are painted white on the top with an orange streamer tape wrapped near the top.
For those of you who have run this race in the past, starting in 2015, we will not be using the Gun Club bypass trail. Follow the trail through the open gates at either end.
Just after mile post 14.5, you will be taking a detour around the Little Ark Baptist Church Cemetery. The part of the course is very rough footing with many tripping hazards. Stay between the orange surveyor flags until you connect back to the main trail. The detour is to the north of the main trail. You will be back on the trail around mile 15.
About 1500 feet after crossing Owens Rd, you will reach mile post 15.5 and the Wal-mart aid station. If you run past the Budget equipment truck, you have gone too far.
Once you reach mile post 15.5, turn around and return to mile post 0, taking the two previously mentioned detours.
There are not a lot of streamers on the trail. They are placed in areas where you might make a wrong turn off the trail. If you are on a paved road for more than 50 feet, you are off course.
The trail is wide and is in great shape. However, “look up, fall down”. There are still rail ties in the bed in spots. The footing is better in the west end of the trail rather than the east end.
The trail surface varies between crushed stone, crushed gravel, small gravel, larger gravel, grass and pine needles.
There is limited aid on the course. At Miles 8,1, 15.5 and 22.9, each participant will receive 1 liter of bottled water.
If there is a yellow line in the middle of any road that you cross, cars are traveling at 55 mph. Make sure you look both ways before crossing. There is a crossing guard that can help.
If a fellow runner goes down, your obligation is to stop and help.
Runners can take assistance only at aid stations. Mules (carrying food and water for others) and outside pacing are prohibited. No Crew or bystander assistance is allowed.
We will not start with lightning in the area. However, once the race has started, it is up to you to take appropriate measures for your safety. Aid station personnel will be in their cars during lightning storms.
Please follow the parking attendants’ directions.
Any crew or family parking at LABC and walking through the cemetery to meet the eastern end of the trail will have their runner pulled from the race immediately.
If you want to wear headphones on the rail trail it is ok. You should pull them out at aid stations and when crossing paved roads. Cars driving at 55 mph hurt when they impact bare skin. If you are wearing the "stay away from me" color, Safety Yellow, you need to be able to hear people asking to pass.
Spider Webs – front runners will encounter webs across the trail. The deer flies are attracted to the webs.
Poison Ivy or Kudzu – In the clearings between mile post 2.0 and 3.5 there is either Kudzu or Poison Ivy on the trail. Both plants have leaves of three with fuzzy vines.
Bees – If you are allergic, bring your own epipen.
Ticks – They are in the area, low in numbers.
Deer Flies – Mostly between mile posts 6.5 and 10. They bite. If you are allergic to bees, you may be allergic to deer flies, too. They are attracted to the color blue and dark clothing.
Standing Water – Depending on rain, between mile posts 14.5 and 15.5, there may be standing water on the trail up to shin deep. During periods of heavy rain, there may be standing water along the entire trail.
You must check in at the start on Saturday morning. People who pick up their race number and do not check in will have their names called at the start. We need to keep track of everybody. If you drop, you must turn in your number at the next aid station. If you drop at Rt 218 aid, you must return your number to the Rt 605 aid station. We are tracking numbers at Indian Town and Wal-Mart. Make sure you tell them when you arrive. Any lost runner that does not follow these procedures will be charged for the cost of search and rescue.
Are not Allowed
You can drop bags at the tent at the RT 605 trailhead between 5:30 and 6:00 am on Saturday morning. These will be transported to the Indiantown (8.1 & 22.9) and Wal-Mart (15.5) aid stations. Make sure you mark your name and bib number on your bags and drop in the correct location’s bin. Bags from Wal-Mart should be back by 11am and from Indiantown by 1:30pm.
You can pick up your own drop bag at Indiantown until 1pm. Directions to Indiantown: Turn left on Rt 605. After 1.3 miles, turn left on Rt 3. After 4.0 miles, turn left on Rt 206. There is a Fast Mart and Food Lion at this intersection. After 2.1 mile, turn left on Indian Town Rd. There is a Dutch Mart at this intersection. Aid station is on the right after 2.1 miles.
There is an 9 hour limit. The course is flat. So if you keep moving at a 15 minute per mile pace, you will finish within the time limit. Intermediate cutoffs are Wal-Mart, 10:30am. Panorama, 11:45am, Indiantown, 1pm, and Comorn, 2:15pm.
There is one at Indian Town and one at Wal-Mart. Porta pots will not have hand sanitizer nor a washing station. Make sure you go off the trail to do other business. Watch out for the poison ivy.