Route: Cumberland Valley on the AT (PA)

Pennsylvania, US
29 km
Vertical Gain
600 m

Rick Martin proposed this route:

I plan to run a double crossing of the Cumberland Valley portion of the Appalachian Trail. I will run the valley “rim” to “rim” to “rim”, which is a few kilometers shy of 60k. In order to reach the symbolic 60k distance, I plan on leaving the Boiling Springs forge parking lot at 8 am to run up to the first “rim”….Center Point Knob. I will then run across the valley to the next “rim”; the high point near the Darlington shelter. I will then turn around and run back across the valley to Center Point Knob. The final stretch will be back to my car at the Boiling Springs forge parking lot; hopefully by 4 pm. Link to the course….

GPS Track


This one is on my list to try.

I'll be attempting the one way route on 5/16/20, unsupported. Will run southbound, as Karl already established, starting from Darlington shelter.

Just got home.  Submitted data for unsupported FKT of 2:30:37, from exactly the Darlington shelter to the sign at Center Point Knob.  Started at the Millers Gap Rd trail head for the Darlington Trail and ran out to the AT on that, then took side trail to shelter before resetting my watch and phone to start FKT tracking.  Got pretty tough out there in the warmer weather.  Not bad, but not used to it yet.  Had a little trouble with some of the road crossings, like the U-turn at the Conodog.... Creek.  Started to hurt around mile 11 and then got a wicked sidetstitch just outside Boiling Springs and actually slowed to a walk by the Children's Lake. I probably looked like I was in a lot of distress, shuffling along the lake, but no one said anything :P  Really didn't have anything left in the tank by the Center Point Knob climb and barely made it up.  Just missed my goal of sub 2:30. I'm submitting my point to point time and not the strava segment time.

I just got home from a southbound unsupported FKT attempt (very last minute - decided to do it around 3:30 p.m. today).  I followed the same route as Katie O and started at the Darlington Shelter and ran to the rock/plaque at Center Point Knob.  Doing it later in the day was a bit of a poor choice as the humidity was high and the temps were up to their peak for the day (high of 76° and the humidity approached 80% towards the end of the run).  I felt pretty good through 11 miles and then my calves started to tighten up.  I did my best to push through it until the base of the climb to approach Center Point Knob.  There was no way I was running that so power hike it was.  I was shooting for sub-3 hours as a conservative goal with an ideal goal to match the current FKT of 2:30 by Katie.  I think with some cooler weather and some more training, a sub-2:30 is achievable.

My Strava submission will include the Darlington Shelter start but I will subtract out the time from there to the four-way with the Tuscarora/Darlington trail per the already established FKT route.  Elapsed time is 2:41:59, subtract 1:42 to get an overall elapsed time of 2:40:17.

Nice work!  My time includes the distance from Darlington Shelter to the 4-way intersection.  Karl's previous FKT appears to start at the shelter, even though his description states the intersection.

We should be clear, for future attempts, where the exact start is.  I vote for shelter, because that's what Karl timed, and there's a strava segment, and that's what I established for first female FKT.  Otherwise, I'd revise my time down.  Thoughts?