Route: Escarpment Trail (NY)

Location
New York, US
Distance
22.5 mi
Vertical Gain
5,800 ft
Description

The Escarpment Trail is a 23.2 mile long trail along the Catskill Escarpment in upstate New York. The trail begins at Schutt Road just outside the Border Kaaterskill North-South Lake Campground (Haines Falls, NY) gate. From there it goes north to Route 23, climbing over Stoppel Point, Blackhead and Windham High Peak along the way. The Escarpment Trail race uses the northernmost 18.6 miles of the trail.

Here's a Strava track of the route: https://www.strava.com/activities/1249525790

We have few reports of FKTs for the entire Escarpment Trail, though of course some fast times have been run in the race, which covers 18.6 of it's 22.3 miles. There is also an FKT for the Double Escarpment (out & back).

GPS Track

Comments

Friday July 3rd, I will attempt an unsupported out & back thru run on the Escarpment trail.

I'll be running the Escarpment Trail from route 23 to North-South lake 5/01/21.  I'll be tracking with my Garmin, planning to start around 6 am.

Not sure if the direction matters for the FKT.

 

Just a quick follow up on this run of the escarpment trail.  Total run time was 4:39:20, so not an FKT by a good bit.  Conditions were an average temp of about 35 degrees, windy and a little light snow.  For those who don't know the trail I would say it is extremely rocky and challenging throughout and trying to do it quickly calls on being on point from start to finish.  I don't know which direction is better or worse to run it but it's intense.  Not having run the trail before I was not expecting what I was in for and was overwhelmed after 12 miles or so at just how relentless the terrain was.  I rarely felt as though I was actually running after what was a relatively benign climb up Windham. 

Things I did right:  Stayed on my feet.  Falling on this terrain alone could have been a big problem.

Things I did wrong: I carried too much water.  The extra weight on my back was pretty stressful.  I probably finished with an extra 24oz of water.  I didn't press hard early.  When I was easily ticking off 12 min miles up windham I kind of expected I would see similar terrain going down and I would easily be running 8 min miles even if it was kinda technical.  The terrain got worse so not taking advantage of the places where I could run kept me slower.

 

For anyone thinking that this FKT at 4:05 is soft it is not.  I ran a 41 mile trail race 2 months ago almost 20 minutes faster than I ran this 22.5.  Just a whole different animal.