The race will start by leaving the tranquil Cliff Pavilion assembly area, down the walking path and turning left up the main park road. Wave at the spectators as you pass the Visitor Center then drop down to the bridge and cross the Loyalsock Creek. Immediately after the bridge, we get down to work by hanging a hard left to the start of High Rock trail. This trail head is shaped like a V, you will stay to the left and return from the right. Now they don’t call it High Rock for nothing as you will need to negotiate some really fun boulder scrambles and pick your way through rock gardens while continuously climbing for the next mile. Don’t forget to take in the view from High Rock Vista!
As you approach the top of the climb, you’ll turn right, cross High Rock Run, and traverse the yellow blazed service trail along the side of the ridge. It’s a smooth, gradual descent that connects you to the infamous Butternut Trail. Head left as you hook up with Butternut and chew up some more smooth(ish) singletrack to the next overlook. Once past the overlook, you better hang on as the trail drops out from beneath you. The Worlds End Ultramarathon takes you up the brutal rock gardens of the Butternut Trail but this time, it’s a scary-as-hell descent back to the beautiful Loyalsock Creek.
Once your back down to the V trailhead, you will cross back over the bridge and back up to the Visitor Center. Take a hairpin turn next to the Visitor Center, then head behind the Visitor Center. Smell the flowers as you hop on the Link Trail and descend for an up close and personal view of the Loyalsock Creek.
As you leave the banks of the creek, you need to cautiously cross RT154 and work your way up the beautiful Double Run Nature Trail. Take in the views of Double Run but keep alert on where you’re going as you’ll shortly arrive at a mad junction of trails where you will need to turn left and follow the famed Loyalsock Trail up the mountain. This junction will have 2-way traffic from those coming down the mountain on the other side of the course, follow the signs or your race will be very short! Once past the junction, the trail begins to get steep and the rocks start to pour on but fear not, you’ll get a reprieve when you turn left to descend on the Canyon Vista Trail. Pick your way down the rocky trail to the state park campground and refuel at your first aid station, you’re going to need it because it’s about to get real with the next climb.
Unlike the first major climb up High Rock Trail which starts you off very steep and slowly relinquishes its mighty death grip, Canyon Vista Trail shows no such mercy. Leave the aid station at the state park campground, pass through a set of campsites on a connector trail, then link up with the new Canyon Vista Trail. Once you’re headed up the mountainside, buckle down and hold the cursing to a minimum. As you reach the top of the climb, you will be rewarded with some neat geological features. One more small climb and reconnect with the Loyalsock Trail to head over to Canyon Vista. Just before the view, you need to veer left and detour down the Loyalsock Trail to Mineral Springs Falls. It’s an easy and super fun downhill that spits you out at a gravel road crossing. Take a right at the gravel road and climb back to Canyon Vista. It’s a cruel joke, I know, but the aid station and spectacular views will surely make up for it!
It’s time to get off the mountain and head towards the finish! Follow the Link Trail off the mountain but be warned, the narrow trails and sharp drop-offs can be quite daunting at full running speed. Pass the Canyon Vista Trail junction, cross the gravel road and tip-toe the rocks along that line on the east branch of Double Run. Soon you’ll reach the 2-way traffic at the mad junction of trails. You’ll need to turn left and then left again to cross the small footbridge. Follow the signs and you’ll be good.
But wait, you’re going to keep to the right immediately after the bridge and then hang a left once you cross over the west branch of Double Run. So confusing I know, but luckily you’re following the ribbons and signs so you won’t get lost! Now soak in the gorgeous waterfall views along the west branch of Double Run before it’s too late, you’re almost to the finish! The trail soon makes it’s way up to Worlds End Road, cautiously cross the road and head down Pioneer Road. It may be called a road, but it’s really a trail. Stay straight as Pioneer Road reconnects to the Loyalsock Trail and follow the Loyalsock Trail back down to the edge of the state park. Once you reach there, you’ll turn left, descend to the beach, cross under the RT154 bridge and head back to the finish line along the edge of the parking lot. Congrats, you survived the Worlds End Fall Classic!