Escarpment Trail Run 30K
Sunday, July 30, 2023 · Windham, NY

FOR MOUNTAIN GOATS ONLY! The Escarpment Trail is a very remote, rugged hiking trail in the Northern Catskill Mountains in New York State. This single track trail crosses no roads, has total elevation changes of nearly 10,000 feet, and requires all aid to be backpacked in by volunteers. This is not for your average runner but for the runner who trains 12 months a year, and has spent years building a base and gaining long distance experience. Therefore, qualifying standards are required to insure that all participants have experience with endurance events and have a reasonable chance of completing the course within 6 hours.

Race Info

Established in 1977 - MOUNTAIN GOATS ONLY.
There are qualification standards - see below for details.


is viewed by many as an exaggeration of the term.
It is extremely rocky and a runner must expect to navigate over boulders, downed trees, gullies and hidden roots the entire distance. Contestants must be prepared to deal with any of the forest's natural barriers, such as bees, slippery rocks, porcupines, black bears (not probable, but possible) and anything else that can be found in the forests of the Catskills. There are numerous places where runners must climb hand over fist to scale a rise, conversely, extremely steep downhill sections add not only challenge to the course, but also a high degree of unwelcome danger. There are sections of the course that travel along cliffs. If you're not careful, you could fall to your death. Very few runners go the distance without taking at least one painful spill. Most runners take many. Believe me, you're going to take a flop or two, or more. Bees!!! In 1987, we ran into lots of them. If you are allergic to bee stings, you MUST run with your own medication.


it is a treacherous hiking trail.
There won't be a vehicle to fetch you if you if you should decide to quit and it is your responsibility to get to the finish line. This is not a Run-For-All and we are not trying to hype it or make it something it is not. There won't be people telling you where the trail goes, doctors to wipe your blisters, or a bus to give you a ride to the finish if you decide you can't continue. This is a wonderful run across wonderful country, a run in which we will share the experience and the friendship with those qualified runners who choose to participate. No awards, no age group categories. Just runners, mountains, and some refreshments at the finish line.


Dick Vincent.
The trail was his playground, a place upon which he and friends shared many runs. In 1977, Dick made it an event and has brought it forward since. He also provides coaching services

RACE DAY - Sunday, July 30, 2023

9:00am Start for Wave 1
The event uses a wave start system. Approximately 15 runners go off every 5 minutes. Registered participants will be assigned to a wave one week prior to the event.
Wave Time
Wave Time

Apply for Entry

Please fully read this section before applying for entry.


The following standards have been set up for accepting entries. We CANNOT accept your entry if you don't meet these standards. We reserve the right to accept or reject any entry. Due to trail limitations, entries will close at 275 runners or on X date, whichever comes first. These qualifying standards are put in place to insure that runners are in condition to safely complete the event in 6 hours. Please don't ask us to accept any qualifier under a road marathon or 30k trail run.

At least one of these standards must have been met after August 1 of last year:
  • Anyone who completed the previous year's Escarpment Trail Run in 6 hours or less.
  • Anyone who completed a half-iron man triathlon competition in 6 hours or less.
  • Anyone who completed a full iron man triathlon in 13 hours or less.
  • Anyone who completed a 50 miler in under 10 hours, a 50K under 5 hours, or a marathon under 4:15. Add 1 1/2 hrs. for a trail race.
If you do not meet any of the qualifying standards above but have run a trail race of 20 miles or longer (ie. a distance not specified above) within 85% more than the time of that race's winner, you are eligible to submit an application. Acceptance is pending our review.

Apply for Entry
2023 applications will open in the spring.


Male Record and Most Wins
2:42:09 set by Lee Berube in 2018

13Benjamin Nephew (MA/USA)2000-2006, 2008-2011, 2014-2015
8Rich Fargo (CT/USA)1986, 1988-1991, 1994, 1996-1997
4Matt Cull (VT/USA)1985,1992-1993,1995
4Lee Berube (NY/USA)2018-2022

Female Record and Most Wins
3:07:22 set by Cassy Bradley-Byrne in 1999

5Sheryl Wheeler (NY/USA)2003-2004, 2007, 2009, 2012
4Jean Kerr (NY/USA)1985, 1987, 1989, 1991
4Cassy Bradley-Byrne (PA/USA)1998-1999,2001-2002
4Michelle Merlis (NY/USA)2017,2021-2023

History of Winners


2023 Virtual* Results 2022 Virtual* Results 2021 Virtual* Results
*Virtual editions required that the individual complete the ACTUAL course during race week.


Read up on what it's all about.

Manitou - The song: By Dave Douglas

The "Boston Marathon" of Trail Runs: Amby Burfoot, 2005

Damon Douglas: In Memoriam

Tour d'Escarpment 2004: Ben Nephew

Rocks and Rolls: Stefani Jackenthal, 2003. Originally published by Attache Magazine

Best of Times, Worst of Times: Escarpment '02: Jim Dunn's reflections on Escarpment 2002

Playing Plinko at Escarpment: Steve Darrow, Sept. 2002. Originally published by the Finger Lakes Runners Club.

Rip's Revenge: Don Kardong, Runner's World, August 1995. We have reproduced this article with permission from Runner's World.

The Escarpment Trail, the Ultimate Test: an article about the first Escarpment Trail Run in 1977, by Paul Fetscher. Originally printed in Today's Jogger, Summer 1977.

Escarpment Trail Run 2002 : Carol Kane's account of the 2002 race, on the HiTek Racing site

Dick Vincent: 25 Years a Streaker: by David Blaikie (Ultramarathon World). Not about the race, but about its founder