Crowders Mtn Ridgeline Trail in NC near Kings Mtn.
Unsupported day hike and trail jogging in mid-Oct. 2019. Warm day, fall leaves obscuring rocks and roots. Trail was dry with a few down trees to hop over.
This is a technical trail with rocks, boulders, roots, several steep elevation pitches, and several road crossings to pay attention to due to privately owned pathways. The elevation profile shows a constant up and down which also adds to the difficulty if you are pushing your pace where you can.
This established, maintained trail is an out and back between two trail heads (Visitor Center and Boulders Access trail heads) thus can be started at either end.
I used my well broken in Altra Timp 1.5s but I took a risk with some brand new Oboz O-Fit insoles (carried the original insoles as a backup). I have been having constant Plantar tightness on back end of my arch and the Oboz did really well for me so they're staing in place. I carried just under 2L of water in a Nathan running vest with some snacks and an ankle brace due to the risk of going faster than a walking pace. After reviewing the Garmin acctivity graphs I could see how much the increasing temperature took its toll on me and uptimately the pace.
The map on All Trails app shows the profile when starting from the main Crowders Visitor Center trail head. Typically it's not nearly as crowded parking from the Boulders Access Trail head. I've done it both directions and the difficulty depends on your preference to the elevation climbs which are closer to the Visitor Center trail head. Part of the trail overlaps with about 3 miles of the Pinnacle trail which is heavily trafficked and another part of the trail has a section, about a mile, that is a gravel fire road.