Glenwood Horse Trail

Glenwood Horse Trail (GHT) – This is a 65+ mile network of advanced single track and jeep roads along the Blue Ridge Parkway from Natural Bridge Station to Camp Bethel outside of Nace.  I like the National Geographic Trails Illustrated map #789 for these trails.

Map #1 and #2 of the Hellgate 100k Trail run.  I participated in the first year of this race in 2003 and finished 9th.  This race starts at 12:01am on the second Saturday in December.  There isn’t another trail ultra quite like it.

Common loops I run/ride:

1.  Park at the Day Creek Day Use parking lot off of HWY 460 on Camp Jaycee Road.  From this large parking lot you can run a number of routes.

  1. Run up the road for 2.3 miles for a hard short distance out and back.
  2. Run up the road for 2.3 miles, cross the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) and then head right, or north, on the AT until the second overlook on the south side of the BRP.  From this overlook, head back on the BRP about .3-.4 miles to Spec Mines trail.  This will take you on a great 2 mile descent down to a gravel forest service road where you will take a left.  Follow that for 2.5 miles and then head left/up at the 4-way intersection and you will be headed back up to the BRP.  Once there cross the road and head down for the 2.3 miles you ran at the beginning.  This is around 13.2 miles.
  3. Similar to the previous route but more miles; Run up the road for 2.3 miles, cross the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) and then head right, or north, on the AT until the second overlook on the south side of the BRP.  From this overlook, head back on the BRP about .3-.4 miles to Spec Mines trail.  This will take you on a great 2 mile descent down to a gravel forest service road where you will take a right.  Follow this gravel road for 3.25 miles until you come to Hammond Hollow Trail on your right.  This is a short steep trail that will take you to the AT.  Go right, or south, on the AT until you reach Black Horse Gap.  Cross the BRP and head down for the 2.3 miles you ran at the beginning.
  4. Similar to the previous route but more miles; Run up the road for 2.3 miles, cross the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) and then head right, or north, on the AT until the second overlook on the south side of the BRP.  From this overlook, head back on the BRP about .3-.4 miles to Spec Mines trail.  This will take you on a great 2 mile descent down the a gravel forest service road where you will take a right.  Follow this gravel road for 3.25 miles until you come to Hammond Hollow Trail on your right.  This is a short steep trail that will take you to the AT.  Go left, north on the AT to a fire road, take a right, up the hill and under the BRP and follow this road for 2.6 miles until the Horse Trail turns off to the right.  Take this section of horse trail 5.5 miles back to Day Creek.  This is around 19.25 miles.
  5. You can also access these loops from other places;
    • Just past camp Bethel you will come to a 4-way intersection.  You can park here run each of these routes.
    • Bobbletts Gap on the BRP
    • At Black Horse Gap on the BRP

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