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Cross Timbers Race Guide

Overview

Start Times

Location

Parking & Directions

Packet Pickup

  • 6:30 am - 50K

  • 6:30 am - Marathon

  • 7:30 am - Half Marathon

  • 7:45 am - 5 Mile


The race takes place at Juniper Point West Campground on the Texas side of Lake Texoma. With rolling hills, the trails offer up some pretty views of the wooded areas on the shore of the lake and also of the lake itself.

We are here by permission from the Army Corps of Engineers, so please, no littering and no smoking at any time on the premises.


For GPS, use the address 32843 U.S. 377, Gordonville, TX 76245 to map to get to the parking area.

Directions: From Whitesboro, TX travel 13 miles north on Highway 377. The campground is on the left side of the highway just before you get to the Willis Bridge that crosses into Oklahoma.

Please follow instructions of any parking volunteers and adhere to any instructions on signs.

Race morning packet pickup is from 6:00 am to 7:30 am. This ensures the volunteers, who are also running, can run to the bathroom and still make their race.

What am I picking up? The following things:

  • Your bib (write medical concerns we should know about on the back as well as emergency contact numbers)

  • Safety pins. Pin your bib wherever you want as long as it's on the front of you AND my volunteers can clearly read it at each aid station.

  • Your entrant shirt (you can swap sizes after your race)

  • If you signed up in the couple weeks before the race, swag provided may be limited to whatever we had left.

 
 

Aid Stations

Aid Stations Locations

Aid Station Food / Drink

Check-In/Out & Dropping

For each distance, below are the aid station details. See the Cutoffs section above for aid station cutoff details.

  • Cedar Bayou - approx 2.5 miles

  • Stairway to Heaven - approx. 6.5 miles (turnaround for the half marathon)

  • Rock Creek Resort - approx. 9.5 miles

  • Paw Paw Point - approx. 13 miles

*Aid Station details subject to change.

WATER: Refreshing H2O at every aid station!

None of these foods or beverages below are guaranteed at any and all times. We'll stay stocked best we can.

 

WE ARE CUPLESS: We're a firm believer in the Leave No Trace principles of trail etiquette, so this will be a Cup-Free Event to eliminate the chance of litter. There will be no paper cups at this event. Everyone must carry some sort of hydration system with them, whether it's a handheld water bottle, a waist fuel belt, or a hydration pack. For other drink needs besides water at the aid stations, we recommend the Ultraspire C2 collapsible reusable cup or the Hydrapouch

We will have reusable cups for soda and pickle juice which will be simply rinsed out between uses.

ELECTROLYTE DRINK: The electrolyte drink on the course will be Tailwind Nutrition.

FOOD: Most of the usuals at the minimum. Cookies, candy, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chips, pretzels, and more. Energy gels are such an individual item that we will not be providing - bring your own favorite if you want to use these as fuel.

Not all foods will be vegetarian friendly, and those with special needs (gluten-free or vegan, for example) and those who are super duper picky should plan to bring their own nutrition. Those with severe food allergies (like a nut allergy or celiac disease) need to be aware that we can not guarantee against cross-contamination.

Aid stations will not provide Advil, Aspirin, Motrin, or any other pain relievers.

Aid stations will not have blister kits. If you are concerned about blisters, carry what you will need in your pack or make sure it's in the drop bag at each location you might need to use it.

At every aid station, participants are expected to check in and out. If you are bib 482, when you arrive, yell "482 IN." When you leave, you or your pacer (for 100 milers) should yell "482 OUT" and check that someone is recording. This keeps our records accurate.

If you decide to drop out of the race, you must please let the aid station captain know and make sure they note it on their clipboard. We don't want you to leave with your crew and then we're calling you or your emergency contact a couple hours later looking for you, or searching the expanse of the trail system for you!

Volunteers will work to monitor every participant's ingress to and egress from the aid stations. We reserve the right to disqualify anyone whose times between any check-in or check-out do not grossly align with the paces expected based on their moving times the rest of the race and their racing history.

 

Course

Course Overview

Course Map

Elevation Profile

Trail Hazards

Course Markings

Enjoy the rugged trails on the shoreline of Lake Texoma on the Texas side with the comfortable temperatures that come with being in Texas in February. We have distances to create an enjoyable day or a hard-fought challenge for anyone!

Lake Texoma is situated right on the border of Texas and Oklahoma. This lake is very popular, attracting 6 million visitors a year. 300-400 runners and walkers gather together every February to run the Cross Timbers Trail out-and-back along the lake's shore. It's a challenging wooded course with lots of roots, rocks, and hills to keep you challenged and engaged!

Course Layout

The course is two-way traffic.

  • 50K: 1 time out-and-back on the full trail, 1 smaller loop on the 5 mile course.

  • Marathon: 1 time out-and-back on the full trail.

  • Half Marathon: 1 time out-and-back on a portion of the trail.

  • 5 Mile: 1 time out-and-back on a smaller portion of the trail.

 

This course map shows the full out-and-back used for the marathon (1 time out and back). 5 Mile loops around where you see the "CB" on the map..

*Mileage is not for contestation. You will cover at least the distance you signed up for.

Garmin GPS devices aren't exact, but here is one elevation profile from a runner in 2016. This is a hilly course. Note that the new trail was created in late 2015 / early 2016, so any courses before 2016 will not reflect the current course. Click on this elevation profile to see it full screen.

This is not an exhaustive list but some hazards to watch out for on the trail:

  • Tree roots.

  • Rocky terrain.

  • Steep climbs.

  • Cliff drop-offs to the side of the trail.

For course markings, we will be using a combination of​

  • bright pink contractor tape flagging, with reflective tape on the ends to capture the light of your headlamp in the dark, that will be clothes-pinned to tree branches and bushes

  • bright pink stake flags for any major field sections that don't have bushes 

  • arrow signs (left, right, straight)

You may see CAUTION tape quarantining off a place to NOT go. And in other spots where there's an intersection, just follow the flagging for the right route to take. Flagging will be visible from where you are standing in the intersection.

Confidence flagging: For trail sections where there's no possible logical offshoot of a trail that you could take other than the one you are on, you may go as far as a half mile without flagging.

If you ever get to a spot where you are completely unsure of where you are, backtrack on the path you took until you get to course markers. If you become utterly and completely lost, never ever go off trail. Sit down where you are and wait until someone gets to you.

CT course map.png
 

Drop Bags, Crew, & Pacers

 

 

 

Drop Bags

Crew & Spectators

Pacers

There are no drop bag opportunities except for by the start/finish line at Juniper Point, which 50K participants can access at mile 26 before completing the smaller 5 mile loop to finish.

Bags will not be covered and will be exposed to the elements so plan accordingly.

Remember our aid stations do not have blister kits, so pack one anywhere you will need it. Review the aid station food and beverage lists and pack anything you require to fuel your body during the event.

Size of drop bags: Just exercise reason. The Race Director reserves the right to tell you that you are taking up too much real estate in the Drop Bag area. You may set up your things by the drop bag tarp with a camp chair if desired.

Friends and family may only crew and spectate at the start/finish line at Juniper Point.

50K participants may have crew assist them at Juniper Point only. Crews may only access their runners within 200 yards of the aid station at the end of each loop.

Crewing a participant outside that area may result in disqualification. Crews may not eat or drink from the aid station at the end of each loop. Failure by any crew member to follow the rules set out here may result in disqualification of their runner.

There are no pacers allowed at this event, as the longest distance is the 50K.

 

Cutoffs & Medical

Cutoffs

Medical

There will be no FINAL cutoff time (within reasonable limits - read on).

There are incremental cutoffs ONLY. You must make each of these cutoffs in order to continue in the race.

  • You must be through the Rock Creek Aid Staton OUTBOUND heading to Paw Paw by 9:25 am.

  • You must be through the Paw Paw Aid Station heading back to Rock Creek by 10:30 am (Mile 13 for marathon and 50K which means an 18:27 pace).

  • You must be through the Rock Creek Aid Station INBOUND heading to Stairway to Heaven by 11:35 am.

  • 50K must complete their first loop by 1:30 pm (at Juniper Point).

  • Everyone must be headed back through Cedar Bayou (approximately mile 23.5 in the marathon and approximately mile 28.5 in the 50K) by 2:20 pm.

This is a pace that makes completing this course possible for any distance with a fair amount of hiking.

These cutoffs represent the time you must be OUT of the aid station by. If a participant chooses to leave an aid station and return to the race course after the time cutoff or after being told by aid station volunteers that they are being pulled from the race, the participant is instantly disqualified and may be banned from future races.

If you leave an aid station before the cutoff but then backtrack and return to that same aid station after the cutoff, you will be pulled from the race.

If you can make the last incremental cutoff and these conditions, we will wait for you with your medal at the finish, however long you take to make the final 2.5 mile journey, within reasonable limits (up to 1.5 hours for that final stretch).

Medical: Each runner is responsible for their own actions. You need to be prepared both physically and mentally for all of the various stresses of the race. Our hope is to not have to call 911 for any of you. But in the event we have to in a medical emergency, medical expenses incurred are the responsibility of the participants receiving medical attention. Some parts of this trail are very remote to road access, and there may be a substantial amount of time that passes before medical personnel can arrive to provide aid.

Runners must understand all risks associated with undertaking this event. These physical and mental stresses include, but are not limited to, dehydration, hyponatremia, hypothermia, heat exhaustion, renal failure, seizures, hypoglycemia, disorientation, falls resulting in physical injury, complete physical and mental exhaustion, etc. Every participant is expected to monitor his or herself continually with an understanding of their own personal limitations. YOU, the individual participant, are absolutely responsible for your well being during and after the race.

 

Awards & Timing

Awards

Timing

Awards in each distance:

  • Top 3 Overall male and female

  • Age group ranges and how deep we award in the age groups is determined by how many are registered for the race.

  • 5 Mile : 1st, 2nd, 3rd place male and female in the following age groups: 19 and Under, 20-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70 and Above.

  • Half Marathon : 1st place male and female in the following age groups: 19 and Under, 20-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65 and Above.

  • Marathon : 1st place male and female in the following age groups: 19 and Under, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and Above.

  • 50K : 1st place male and female in the following age groups: 19 and Under, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and Above.

There is no prize money.

There is no double dipping. Overall winners aren't eligible for age group awards.

Awards for The Active Joe races are small and will travel well in checked or carry-on luggage.

Every finisher gets a finisher item.

The event will be chip timed. The "chip" is actually a tag attached to the back of the race bib. Unlike shoe chip tags, there are no special instructions for the bib tag.  They do not have to be looped a specific way, nor is there possible runner mishandling that can compromise RFID timing.  Do not take the foam cover off your bib chip. If you do not have a chip on the back of your bib, find the race timer by the start/finish early race day morning to get a new bib.

Some tips that enhance reader sensitivity, all of which are very standard practices:

  • Bibs need to be worn to ensure race timing.  If they do not wear a bib, they do not receive a time.

  • Bibs should be worn on the front of the body.

  • Bibs should be worn visible to anyone observing, so on the exterior of clothing.  If youwear a jacket and place the bib underneath, it can help if you expose the underlying bib upon mat-crossing to enhance reader sensitivity.  This is usually only a precaution.

  • Bibs should not be crumpled up and placed inside runner's clothing.

Failure to register on multiple timing mats or incredibly inconsistent timing splits between timing mats may result in investigation and potential disqualification.There may be at least one timing mat besides the one at the start/finish somewhere out on the race course. We will not be announcing the locations of all mats.

If you find you inadvertently go off course or take a wrong turn, you must return to where you left the course before continuing. If you cut a loop short and realize it, immediately notify volunteers to go find the race officials so a determination can be made as to how to help you complete the full distance.

Those not following the course will risk disqualification.

 

Swag

For your entry, you receive:

  • Technical fabric shirt (in your size while supplies last)

  • The opportunity to run beautiful trails during a competitive race!

  • Being taken care of for up to 8+ hours (depending on your race distance) with aid stations, portapotties, race timing, and a marked race course.

For your finish, you receive:

  • A finisher item for all finishers

  • If you paid $5, you get your choice of a hamburger, hot dog, or veggie burger, plus chips and a soda!

  • Hanging out with your fellow runners and hikers while we cheer on finishers and people are enjoying their food straight from the grill!

Environment & Travel

Weather

Littering

Travel

Weather: Average low temperature is 40. Average high temperature is 61. But it’s Texas so the weather is known for being unpredictable. Historical average rainfall/snow for the month of February is 0.1 inches.

Sunrise: 7:08 am. Sunset: 6:13 pm (civil twilight 6:38 pm).


If we find you littering, you're disqualified. We are here by the permission of the Army Corps of Engineers, and we want them to invite us to come back. Don't jeopardize that for everyone. If you get all the way out of the aid station with a gel wrapper, paper cup, or anything else, carry it with you to the next aid station.

Accommodations - Hotel

 

Accommodations - Camping

The Juniper Point (west) campground has 12 spots but are first-come, first-served.

38 sites are available in the C section of Buncombe Campground just 3 miles away from the start/finish. They will all be first-come, first-served, and will be $12 per night. No attendant will be on duty to take money, so use the honor vault station at the entry kiosk to pay for your spot. Information on the Bumcombe Campground is here...

 

Air/Ground Transportation

A car will be needed to get around. There will be no shuttle service arranged, as we expect the vast majority of attendees to be locals or have rented a car for the trip from the airport.

Dallas, Texas is served by two area airports: Dallas-Love Field (DAL) is the smaller one where Southwest Airlines flies out of, and then all other airlines fly through Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

 

Registration & Policies

Register Now

Entry Fees

Refunds

Bib Transfers

Distance Changes

Dropping Down

Wait List

Rules

Register Now

Online registration is open. Register here...

As with all The Active Joe races, bib numbers are assigned in order of signup, so the lowest numbers for those most enthusiastic who sign up first!

As with our other trail races, you are also given the chance to request your top 3 "lucky" bib numbers. If not already claimed, I'll give you the first one of those listed that I can!

Mail-in registration is not available.

This race has a limit of 400 total participants. Emphasis will be on the longer distances so shorter distances may close temporarily if they fill too fast to allow certain percentages in each distance. Some swag as we get closer to race day will be limited to the first X that sign up in that distance once orders are placed.

We understand that LIFE HAPPENS! Note that, unlike a lot of races, this race offers a refund policy (described below) and even refunds if you downgrade your distance (also described below). You may also go up in distance up until the start of the race (also described below). So there is no downside for committing to your goal now!

50K

  • First 15 runners - $105 (current price tier)

  • Next 10 runners - $115

  • Until sell out or before race day - $125

  • Race day (if not sold out) - $135

Marathon

  • First 30 runners - $95 (current price tier)

  • Next 10 runners - $100

  • Next 10 runners - $110

  • Until sell out or before race day - $120

  • Race day (if not sold out) - $125

Half Marathon

  • First 40 runners - $80 (current price tier)

  • Next 40 runners - $85

  • Next 20 runners - $95

  • Next 20 runners - $100

  • Until sell out or before race day - $105

  • Race day (if not sold out) - $110

5 Mile

  • First 30 runners - $40 (current price tier)

  • Next 50 runners - $45

  • Next 40 runners - $50

  • Until sell out or before race day - $55

  • Race day (if not sold out) - $60

*All prices subject to change.

Refunds can be requested if you find your plans change.
Refunds are subject to a $15 Administration Fee before December 1st.
Refunds are subject to a $25 Administration Fee December 1st through December 31st.
Refunds are subject to a $35 Administration Fee January 1st to January 20th.
No refunds will be processed after January 20th.

See dropping down distances ahead of time below for info on refunds for downgrading your distance and receiving a refund before January 20th.

Want to transfer your race entry to a friend? Bib transfers will be allowed until February 10th and will be subject to a $15 Administration Fee. NO TRANSFERS ALLOWED ON RACE DAY. If we've already committed the available swag (like shirts), your friend taking your bib gets whatever sizes/stuff you signed up for (no switches).

 

Changing Distances Ahead of Time

If you want to switch distances before your race starts, email us if before Wednesday, February 14, or come find me at the race start/finish at packet pickup and runner check-in time pre-race, and we'll verify we have the swag and finisher gear to support it, and we'll approve it.

If upgrading distances, you will just need to pay the difference between the price you paid for your original distance and the current price at the time of the request for your new distance.

If downgrading distances and the lower distance costs less than you paid, you can get a refund for the difference minus the admin fee shown above in the refund schedule.

If downgrading distances and the lower distance now costs more than when you originally paid, you will owe the difference, but no fees.

Refunds for distance downgrades will only be granted until January 15th.

Dropping Down Distances Mid-race

If you drop down midrace to a shorter distance than you initially signed up for, then you will not have an official finish in the shorter distance. Dropping midrace will result in a DNF (Did Not Finish). We all have bad days. It's okay. If you want to switch distances ahead of time, talk to us (or email us), we'll verify we have the swag and finisher gear to support it, and we'll approve it BEFORE your race starts.

 

We will offer a wait list for those who didn't get in if the race sells out early. Depending on when you get pulled off the wait list if a spot opens up, your swag (like shirt and other stuff) options may be limited or you may not receive some of it. We do not overorder stuff.

Rules

  • See our Transgender Entrant Policy which applies to all races produced by The Active Joe and seeks to support, include, and protect the privacy of the transgender athletes who attend our races.

  • Dogs are allowed into the race on a case by case basis and only a limited number will be allowed. You must email to inquire about your animal.

  • No strollers are allowed on the race course for the safety of all.

  • Runners and walkers are both welcome, as long as you can finish by the time limit.

  • Entry fees are non-refundable, including in the case of inclement weather.

  • This is a private event, so unregistered participants are not allowed. "Banditting" (as this action is referred to) is frowned upon in the running community and unfair to the runners who paid for the opportunity to participate. Race entry fees go for a lot more than water on a course, medals at the finish line, and a shirt in your race packet. It also exposes an event to serious liability risk. It stresses race resources that were calibrated for the sold-out number of participants and therefore can put other participants', the paid participants, health or safety at risk. Those who bandit any portion of the race may be banned from future events by The Active Joe.

  • Note that it is never okay to allow someone else to use your bib without a proper bib transfer arranged with the Race Director. This can lead to serious liability and medical risks in the chance of emergency and jeopardize the future of the event for everyone.

  • Our primary goal is to provide a safe event for participants, volunteers, and the community alike. If something arises that threatens that safety, then a) the event will be altered as it is reasonably possible without stressing other resources, b) the events may be delayed during the morning, or c) the event may be canceled. The event can not be rescheduled for another date due to resource availability in the event of cancellation.

  • Event shirts not picked up at packet pickup or race day will not be mailed.

*All items above subject to potential significant change.

 
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