Day #5: The Shut-In Ascent

When I first read the Runner’s World issue with the best trail runs in the United States, I latched on to the Shut-In Trail for two reasons: it was near Asheville, North Carolina – a city I’d longed to visit, and it ran from the base of a forest 18.9 miles into the mountains. These…

Day #4: Hiking the Bent Creek Trails

There are 27 trails within the Bent Creek system in the Pisgah National Forest Southern Research Station. I know this because when I checked into the park, I was handed a map. The reason for the organization: Bent Creek is a research forest, which means scientists are here conducting all manners of research around conservation.…

Day #4: Exploring Asheville

Wednesdays are my off days, which in Muncie means I spend most of my time lounging around my town home doing a whole lot of nothing. I’d like to say I’m motivated to get out and do activities in my town of residence but there’s not a culture of activity there. Here in Asheville –…

Day #3: The Asheville Base Camp

I’m sitting in my tent, nestled in the Hard Times loop of the Lake Powahatan Recreational Area. The campground itself is just a small part of the Bent Creek Experimental Forest project on the edges of Asheville, North Carolina. The drive east along Interstate 40 and then south along Interstate 26 was breathtaking. I kept…

Brad’s US Trails Adventure: The Itinerary

After weeks of kicking around itineraries, I’ve finally settled upon the course for the southern part of Brad’s US Trail Adventure. (You can see the whole map here, including the places I won’t be going). Many of these trails are in Runner’s World’s “25 Best Trail Runs in America” series that I stumbled upon several…