The Mount Mitchell Heartbreaker 50M/55K is an extremely scenic tour of "the other Pisgah" in the shadow of Mount Mitchell. Starting at the foot of the mountains in Old Fort, NC at Camp Grier, the race takes runners up and down some of the most stunning, quad-busting, and heart-pounding trails in all of Western North Carolina, eventually taking the 50 milers over three 6,000 ft+ peaks including Mount Mitchell itself, making this the highest 50 miler east of the Mississippi! Highlights of the course include Snooks Nose, Green Knob, Black Mountain Crest, and Heartbreak Ridge Trails.
Date & Time
March 23rd, 2024
50M Start: 5:30 AM
55K Start: 7:00 AM
Location: Camp Grier, Old Fort, NC
If for some reason you need to cancel your registration, you have up to 45 days before the event to cancel and receive a partial refund. If canceling before January 1st you will receive a 75% refund. If you cancel after January 1st up until 45 days prior to the event, you will receive a 50% refund. If you cancel within 45 days of the event, no refund will be given regardless of the circumstance leading you to cancel. The race maintains a waitlist to fill any open spots, so bibs cannot be transferred.
Each course has a bit of everything, from technical singletrack, grassy double track, gravel, and a short bit of pavement. The 50 miler has three major climbs and descents up Snooks Nose/ down Green Knob, up Mt Mitchell and the Crest Trail/ down Buncombe Horse, and up Bald Knob Ridge/ down Heartbreak Ridge. The 50k has two major climbs/descents, the first and last as described in the 50 miler. The 50k does not include the climb up Mt Mitchell. Although the course has a lot of climbing, there are plenty of sections to make up time with long gentle downhills and a good mix or gravel road sections.
Each course will have a combo of full and fluid only aid stations located approximately every 4-7 miles along the course. Aid stations will have at a minimum: Water and Gatorade. Minimum foods include: bananas, orange slices, potato chips, pretzels, PB&J, and M&Ms.
50M ~ 12,000 ft | 55k ~ 7,500 ft
50M - 5 full, 3 fluid | 55k - 4 full, 2 fluid
50M - 5:00 AM 55K - 7:00 AM
50M - 16 hours | 55K - 12 hours
Need to Know
Weather conditions can change drastically on the mountain. If race needs to be canceled due to extreme weather, the race will try to be rescheduled or run virtually. No refunds will be given if you cannot attend the rescheduled date or if rescheduling is not an option.
In the event the parkway is closed, but the course is in otherwise good condition, an alternate course will be used for both distances that does not cross the parkway. The alternate courses are also stunning.
You must carry required gear at all times. This includes a rain shell, at least 30oz total of water carrying capacity, a whistle, cell phone, and an emergency blanket. All 50 milers are required to carry a headlamp at the start and upon leaving S Toe River Aid station.
There are multiple lodging options at Camp Grier from private cabins, dorm style cabins, and camping. You can book lodging during registration through ultrasignup or visit this link to book later.
We will have live GPS tracking for the event through Adventure Enablers. This will require carrying a small GPS device in your pack of the duration of the race.
Stay on marked trails, DO NOT CUT SWITCHBACKS!
Must carry required gear at all times.
Must check into all aid stations.
Crew only allowed at aid station locations denoted for crew accessibility
Absolutely no crews or spectators allowed on the Blue Ridge Parkway
Use proper trail etiquette when passing other runners
Be courteous to other trails users
Obey any race official's request
If dropping from race, you must inform a race official that you are dropping from the race and turn in your race bib to the nearest aid station
Must return your tracker upon finishing the race or you will be billed for a replacement
Packet Pick Up
Pre-Packet pickup will be held at Camp Grier from 4-8pm on Mach 22nd under the pavilion.
Please pick up your packet early, however, we will have race day pickup starting at 4am.