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Reservoir Relay Trail Run

Reservoir Relay Trail Running Race
Race Day Information:

Dear Reservoir Relay Competitor:

The countdown is on and excitement is brewing for the second annual Reservoir Relay Trail Running Race coming up this Sunday, May 21st.   This unique event includes 18 miles of awesome single-track trail running in Western Fairfax County.  The linear park corridor connecting Bull Run Park in the north to Fountainhead in the south is wooded and undulating, with the Occoquan Reservoir to the West and private property to the East.  The Bull Run-Occoquan Trail runs through the middle of this park corridor and is known for its beautiful scenery, fun stream crossings, technical terrain, and challenging hills.  Prepare for an amazing day of running in the woods and we wish you the best of luck!

Schedule for race day, Sunday, May 21, 2017:

- Shuttle riders meet @ Fountainhead @ 7am for ride to start @ Bull Run Park

- Shuttle departs Fountainhead @ 7:15am (ADVANCED REGISTRATION REQUIRED)

- Check-in opens @ Bull Run Park @ 7:30am

- Shuttle arrives @ Bull Run Park @ 8am

- Pre-race brief @ Bull Run Park @ 8:45am

- Race start @ Bull Run Park @ 9am

- Runners finish @ Fountainhead from 11am-2:30pm

- Post-race food, drink, music @ Fountainhead from 11am-3pm

- FREE Kids ‘Race’ @ 1pm (for kids 2-11)

- Awards @ Fountainhead @ 1:15pm

This email is LONG but it is loaded with useful race day information.  See below for detailed info to include:  start list link, race overview, course conditions/weather, shuttle info, bag check, directions to shuttle pick up, directions to check-in/race start, check-in, restrooms, race start, course marking, e-punch timing system, transition areas, aid stations, cut-off times, relay team logistics, relay team run vs drive times, info/directions for traveling between parks, awards, post-race food, sponsors, and giveaways.

- Start List:  Click here to view the start list (as of 5/15).  If you see a TBD next to your team division then this means that we do not have complete information for your teammates.  If this is the case, please have your teammate/s register online (ie ‘Join your team’) by this Thursday, 5/18 at the latest.  The final updated start list will go online on Friday, 5/19 (after registration closes at midnight on 5/18).

- Race Overview:  This linear race course includes the entire 18 miles of the Bull Run-Occoquan Trail, beginning at Bull Run Park in Centreville, VA and ending at Fountainhead Regional Park in Fairfax Station, VA.  Traversing the Occoquan Reservoir, the course has been divided into three linear segments measuring approximately 5-7 miles each.  Solo athletes will run all three segments (ie the entire 18 mile course).  Two or three person relay teams will leap frog the three segments where the 'active' runner and the ‘on deck’ runner will swap car keys for e-punch key (timing chip).  For two person teams, one team member will complete any two segments of the race. 

The three race segments are as follows:

Segment 1:  Bull Run Park in Centreville, VA to Hemlock Overlook in Clifton, VA (7.35M)
Segment 2:  Hemlock to Bull Run Marina in Clifton, VA (4.75M)
Segment 3:  Bull Run Marina to Fountainhead Regional Park (5.85M)

- Click here for links to the maps, GPS tracks, and elevation profiles for each of the three race segments

- Course Conditions and Weather:  With all the rain last week, the trails were very wet or flooded when we scouted this past weekend.  The weather is looking mostly dry this week so I except the trails to be in fantastic shape on race day.  The race day forecast is calling for warm temps in the mid-70s and a low chance of precipitation.  The weather forecast often changes this far out so please check the weather the day before and come prepared for the elements. 

- Optional shuttle for SOLO RACERS:  A shuttle will transport solo racers from Fountainhead (finish) to Bull Run Park (start) on race morning.  This $15 optional shuttle was part of the registration process.  Relay racers and solo racers who are managing their own transportation to the starting line were not required to pay this fee.  Shuttle riders should arrive at Fountainhead by 7am.  The shuttle will depart Fountainhead at 7:15am and arrive at Bull Run Park by 8am.  After the shuttle ride, shuttle riders will check-in at Bull Run Park.  The race will start at 9am.  Relay teams will use their own personal vehicles to transport teammates.  The start list link above includes the confirmed shuttle riders.  There are still spots open on the shuttle so if you are a solo racer now in need of transportation on race day, please email us at to request a spot.  Those booking late can pay the $15 fee at check-in on race morning.

- Bag Check for Solo Racers:  Solo racers may check a bag at check-in.   EX2 will transport this checked bag from the start at Bull Run Park to the finish at Fountainhead.  Racers must show their bib number to pick up their checked bag.

Directions to Shuttle Pick-Up @ Fountainhead (FOR SHUTTLE RIDERS ONLY)
Fountainhead Regional Park, 10875 Hampton Rd, Fairfax Station, VA 22039

From Interstate 66 to Fountainhead:
- Take I-66 to Route 286 (Fairfax County Parkway).
- Exit at 55A SOUTH toward Springfield.
- Travel south on Rt. 286 for approx. 6 miles.
- Exit onto Rt. 123 SOUTH (Ox Rd.) for approx. 3 miles.
- Right onto Henderson Rd for approx. 2 miles.
- Left on Hampton Rd. for approx. 1.4 miles
- Right into park and continue to the upper parking lot on the right.

From Interstate 95 to Fountainhead:
- Exit I95 and take Rt. 123 NORTH for approx. 4.5 miles.
- Left on Hampton Rd. for approx. 3 miles
- Left into park and continue to the upper parking lot on the right.

Directions to Check-In and Race Start @ Bull Run Regional Park
Bull Run Regional Park, 7700 Bull Run Dr., Centreville, VA 20121

From Interstate 66 to Bull Run Park:
- Exit I52 and take US-29 toward Centreville
- At light after exit, turn right onto US-29 S and travel 2.1 miles.
- Turn left onto State Rte 621/Bull Run Post Office Rd. and travel 1.1 miles.
- Continue onto Bull Run Drive and into the park
- Follow the race parking signs and go straight to the Atlantis Waterpark at the end of the road.

- Check-In:  Check-in opens at 7:30am. Check-in will take place in the Atlantis Waterpark parking lot at Bull Run Regional Park in Centreville, VA.  After entering the main gate at Bull Run Park, follow the EX2 race parking signs and go straight all the way to the end of the road.    ALL SOLO RACERS AND ALL RELAY TEAM MEMBERS MUST CHECK-IN AT BULL RUN PARK.  At check-in, racers will receive their bib number, t-shirt, and e-punch timing key (one/solo or team).  Written driving directions for relay teams and spectators will be available at check-in.  It takes time to park, check-in, use the restroom, warm up, and attend the pre-race brief.  We recommend arriving by 8am. 

- Restrooms:  Restrooms or portojohns will be available at the race start at Bull Run Park, the race finish at Fountainhead, and at both transition areas at Hemlock Overlook and Bull Run Marina.

- Race Start:  The race begins at 9am SHARP!   We will start with a brief prologue before entering the trail.  The pre-race brief will begin at 8:45am and take place near check-in and the parking lot of the Atlantis Waterpark at Bull Run Regional Park. 

- Course Marking:  The course will be marked with pink surveying tape.  Red arrows will be posted at all trail intersections.  Course marking will be heavy before and after all trail intersections but light along the rest of the course.   

- E-punch Timing System:  An e-punch timing system will be used in this event.  The e-punch timing system requires each ‘active’ racer to carry a small electronic key.  The e-punch key will be attached to a lanyard.  When inserted into the e-punch box at each transition area, this electronic key will store the time/location at each transition area.  The data on your e-punch key will be downloaded at the finish to provide results and split times.  You will receive your e-punch key at check-in (one e-punch key/team or solo racer).  A demonstration of the e-punch system will be provided at the pre-race brief.

- Transition Areas:  All solo racers and relay racers will be REQUIRED to check-in and e-punch at two transition areas and at the finish.  The transition areas are positioned at the end of each of the three segments of the race at Hemlock, Bull Run Marina, and Fountainhead.

- Aid Stations:  This 18 mile race has seven on-course aid stations and one post-race aid station.  All aid stations will be stocked with water and Gatorade and placed 1.1-3.45 miles from each other.  Aid stations will be positioned at 2.4M, 4.9M, 7.35M, 10.3M, 12.1M, 15.55M, 16.85M, and 17.95M.  First aid kits and emergency communication will be available at each aid station.   NOTE:  most aid stations are within 2.5 miles from each other but, given the rugged terrain and limited access to some portions of the trail, two aid stations are positions 2.95 and 3.45 miles from the last aid station.  Carefully consider whether the spacing of aid stations will be adequate for your needs and run with a hydration system/bottle of water if needed.  Bottled water will be available at the start (Bull Run Park) and at both transition areas (Hemlock at 7.35M and Bull Run Marina at 12.1M).  In addition, gels, bars, salty snacks, cookies, and sodas will be available at both transition areas. 

- Cut-Off Times/SAFETY:  Racers must check-in at Hemlock by 11:30am and Bull Run Marina by 12:45pm.  Those arriving after the cut-off times will not be permitted to begin the next segment of the race and will receive a DNF (Did Not Finish).  These cut-off times are in place for your safety.  We will be tracking each racer during the event so if someone does not show up by the specified cut-off times, we will begin a search.  VERY IMPORTANT SAFETY RULE:  IF YOU DECIDE NOT TO FINISH THE RACE, YOU MUST RETURN YOUR E-PUNCH KEY AND NOTIFY US BEFORE YOU DEPART.

- Relay Team Logistics:  Relay teams must provide their own team vehicle in this race.  The non-starting racer/s on each relay team will drive their team vehicle from the start at Bull Run Park to the end of the first segment at Hemlock Overlook.  At Hemlock, the 'on deck' racer will wait in the Transition Area for their active running teammate to finish the first segment of the race.  When the active racer arrives at Hemlock Overlook, he/she will e-punch (insert timing chip into our system) and then the active racer and the on-deck racer will exchange e-punch key for vehicle keys.  The on-deck racer will now be the active racer and they will begin the second segment of the race, from Hemlock Overlook to Bull Run Marina.  Once the second racer has begun Segment 2, the starting racer will retrieve the car from the parking lot and drive (with the 3rd teammate if applicable) to Bull Run Marina, the end of Segment 2. The same process will be repeated for the final segment from Bull Run Marina to Fountainhead.  Written driving directions will be provided at check-in.

- Relay Team Run vs Driving Time – There is enough time to safely drive from the beginning of a segment to the end of that segment before any active runner may finish that segment.  But, the racer who just transitioned from ‘active’ to ‘on-deck’ status should depart immediately after transition.  See below for directions, addresses, and estimated run and drive times for each segment of the race.

Traveling Between Parks for RELAY RACERS

Segment 1
From: Bull Run Park: 7700 Bull Run Dr, Centreville, VA 20121 (Start of Segment 1)
To: Hemlock Overlook: 13220 Yates Ford Rd, Clifton, VA 20124 (Finish of Segment 1)
Driving Distance = 13 miles
Approximate Driving Time = 30 minute
Running Distance of Segment 1 = 7.35 miles
Approximate Minimum Running Time of Segment 1 = 49 minutes

Driving Directions from Bull Run Park to Hemlock Overlook
- From the waterpark, take Bull Run Drive for 2.3 miles to right onto Compton Rd. (Rte 658)
- Take Compton Rd (Rte 658 for 6.7 miles to right onto Clfiton Rd (VA-645)
- Take Clifton Rd. into the town of Clifton, where it will change to Main St.
- Continue straight on Main St until it turns into Kincheloe Rd.
- Continue on Kincheloe Rd. to 4 way stop sign at Yates Ford Rd.
- Right onto Yates Ford Rd. for 1.7 miles until road dead ends at Hemlock Overlook

Segment 2
From: Hemlock Overlook: 13220 Yates Ford Rd, Clifton, VA 20124 (Start of Segment 2)
To: Bull Run Marina: Old Yates Ford Rd, Clifton, VA 20124 (Finish of Segment 2)
Driving Distance = 5 miles
Approximate Driving Time = 15 minutes
Running Distance of Segment 2 = 4.75 miles
Approximate Minimum Running Time of Segment 2 = 35 minutes

Driving Directions from Hemlock Overlook to Bull Run Marina
- From Hemlock Overlook, take Yates Ford Rd for 1.7 miles to a 4 way stop sign
- Continue on Yates Ford Rd for .4 miles to a stop sign at Clifton Rd. (VA-645)
- Right onto Clifton Rd. (VA-645) for .2 miles.
- Right onto Henderson Rd. (VA-612/VA-643) and travel 1.6 miles
- Slight right onto Old Yates Ford Rd. (VA-612) and travel .8 miles to Bull Run Marina.
- The Bull Run Marina parking lot will be on your left.

Segment 3
From: Bull Run Marina: Old Yates Ford Rd, Clifton, VA 20124 (Start of Segment 3)
To: Fountainhead: 10875 Hampton Rd, Fairfax Station, VA 22039 (Finish of Segment 3)
Driving Distance = 6.3 miles
Approximate Driving Time = 15 minutes
Running Distance of Segment 3 = 5.85 miles
Approximate Minimum Running Time of Segment 3 = 42 minutes

Directions from Bull Run Marina to Fountainhead Regional Park
- Exit the Bull Run Marina parking lot and take a right onto Old Yates Ford Rd. (VA-612)
- Travel on Old Yates Ford Rd. to a right onto Henderson Rd. (VA-643) (very tight turn)
- Travel 2.5 miles on Henderson Rd. (VA-643) to a three-way stop sign
- Turn right and continue on Henderson Rd. (VA-643) for .6 miles.
- Right onto Hampton Rd. (VA-647) and travel 1.4 mile to park entrance on right.
- Right into Fountainhead.
- Continue to the upper parking lot on the right.

- NO EARPHONES or LOUD AUDIBLE MUSIC:  The use of EARPHONES or LOUD AUDIBLE MUSIC that restricts hearing is not permitted during any EX2 race.  Why, you may ask?  Well, for the following three reasons:

  1. Safety – we need to look out for each other!  Our courses are held on trails in remote areas.  If someone gets injured out on the trails, we rely on racers to notify us so we can activate emergency response.  So, we need racers to be alert and able to hear calls for help. 
  2. Courtesy – trail races are very different than road races.  Passing is usually not a problem in road races but passing can be a challenge on single-track hiking trails.  To pass safely, trail etiquette suggests using audible signals such as passing on your left.  Passing someone who can’t hear you is difficult and frustrating.
  3. Community – at EX2 Adventures we strive to build community.  Please use your time with EX2 to unleash yourself from your device, enjoy the sounds of nature, talk to people, make some friends, and have fun.   

- Post Race Beverages/Food:  Water, Gatorade, and sodas will be available after the race.  Food includes pizza, mini burritos, bananas, trail bars, chips, cookies, bagels, peanut butter, and M&Ms.  FREE food and beverages will be available at the finish line for all racers and volunteers. 

- Kids ‘Race’ – At 1pm, all kids aged 2-11 are invited to participate in the FREE kids race for treasure.  We will match kids in age groups and have them run a short out and back ‘race’.  After they run, all kids who participate can grab something from the Treasure Box!  

- Awards:  The awards ceremony will take place at approximately 1:15pm!  Awards will be given to the top five solo or team in each age group/division.    

- Photos:  Professional photographer, Bruce Buckley, will be at this event taking photos.  Bruce strives to capture the spirit of adventure and friendly competition.  He offers digital downloads and traditional prints and his photos will be online within 7 days of the event.  A link to the photos will be available from the ‘results’ webpage.

- Sponsor Giveaways:  Below is a rundown of all our sponsor giveaways.  We will randomly select winners for the giveaways using a variety of different methods.  We have a lot of swag to give away but you must be present at the awards ceremony to win.  So, please plan on sticking around to join in the fun!

- Baseball Bonanza:  Extra, Extra, Get Your Nats Tickets at EX2!  How cool is this?  All EX2 sponsors chipped in to buy tickets to the Washington Nationals - so we could give them away to you.  We have a pair of tickets to randomly give away at every race until October….that’s 13 races!       

- Baird Automotive $100 Benjamin Bash: Benjamin, C-note, Hundie, Charlie, 100 Clams, Big One… it what you will but it all means the same thing….$100 of cold hard cash.  Back by popular demand, race or volunteer in any of our nineteen (19) races in 2017 and you could win a crisp $100 bill, generously furnished by longtime EX2 racer and all around good guy, Joey Baird of Baird Automotive.   

- Integrated Financial Partners Surprise Swag Raffle:  At all races in 2017, fellow racer and IFP Financial Advisor, Erik Scudder will give away $50 in swag.  He likes to surprise us with what he gives away but it is always nice stuff.  Just stop by their table, fill in one of their forms, and you are eligible to win.  Erik is also known for bringing hot coffee on cold mornings! 

- Drink More Water – Hydration System Giveaway:  Drink More Water is committed to help you achieve peak performance by, well, drinking more water.  Not only do they supply tons of water to EX2 (literally), but they will randomly give away water bottles and/or hydration systems at each race of the season.  Pretty cool, huh?  Racers and volunteers are eligible.

- Volunteers:  Finally, we can always use the help of volunteers.  If any of your friends or family can help, please ask them to sign up online at the following link:  Volunteers help with check-in, aid stations, course marshaling, timing, food distribution, course sweeping and course demarking.  Times vary from 7am-2pm and shifts are usually 2-4 hours.  Volunteers receive free food, a cool race t-shirt, $15 off a future EX2 race or $5 off EX2 merchandise, and our sincere appreciation. Plus, volunteering at EX2 races is fun!

Thanks for participating in the Reservoir Relay Trail Running Race.  We are looking forward to a fantastic day.  Good luck and see you this Sunday!

Jim Harman
Race Director
EX2 Adventures



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Since the year 2000, EX2 Adventures has produced quality outdoor adventure experiences for the greater Washington DC metropolitan community. We encourage you to browse our site and join us at our events. Whether as a competitor, volunteer, or sponsor you are sure to have an excellent experience!