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Stump Jump Sections 1 and 3

Premier event in Salomon/Rock Creek Trail Series
Difficulty: Strenuous
Length: 10 miles
Duration: Half day

Overview:  The Stump Jump is a challenging ultramarathon trail race held annually on the first Saturday of October along the Cumberland Trail... more »

Tips:  I usually park at the pavilion at the back of the park and enter the trail at the gravel lot on right. Go left on the trail and head... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Signal Mountain High School

Start/Finish for Stump Jump.

2. Road Section

The race begins leaving the parking lot and then a right turn staying on pavement for about a half mile.

3. Into the woods

4. Blue Trail

As soon as you duck into the woods you are on the blue trail. Yes, blue blazes. Stay left at first intersection and the gravel path will head to the right. You are running in a clockwise direction for a lap around the park. The path is generally wide enough for side-by-side running. There are a couple of wooden bridges and several rocky water... More

5. Blue at Covered Bridge

I screwed up the track at this point by taking a right towards covered bridge instead of left staying on blue. Both trails come back together and I don't know that there is much of a distance difference in route. I don't have a picture of intersection but checked with the RD and he says left is correct. First intersection stay left.

6. Gravel Road

Then you cross the gravel road.

7. Paved Road

The paved road is next. Cross over and pick back up on trail. Cannot remember whether you go left on the trail across creek or right onto bridge over creek? Both trails come together on the other side. On raceday it will be marked and there will be a person stopping traffic at the crossing.

8. 11 mile split

In this section there is a trail coming in from left, that is the 11-mile course out to Edward's Point. The trail markings are now 3 colors. Blue, Yellow and Orange. I think the Red is a boundary. Stay on blue for SJ 50K.

9. Quiet Hill, Okay, Hopper Hill

I thought this was interesting. Quiet Hill? You climb a hill behind football field. A couple of switchbacks up and down, a couple of more bridges and creek crossings. Time to think about making your move. You are about to hit the ATV road.

On the way back you'll hate this section. It seems to never end. I remember it from 2008 and it sucks.

10. Off Blue onto ATV

The picture is poor, but on the backside of the park you come to a point where there is a soccer field on your right. The blue trail goes 90 degrees to right and you stay straight on the ATV road downhill. In the picture with my dog the ATV is straight ahead.

11. ATV Descent

Time to get serious. You now begin the descent to Mushroom. The trail goes left then a rocky downhill and back to right. Once at the bottom the race is on to Mushroom Rock.

12. ATV take a left

Left turn at T intersection. This next section is pretty level.

On the way back it is the 3d right. If you are training do not take the 1st or 2d or you will miss the park and be on your way to Edward's.

13. ATV Water

You now hit a series of puddles and a creek. Every year there is water and every year the field slows. There is an actual creek here flowing across the trail. There some cool rocks up and downstream to look at.

14. ATV Stay Right to Mushroom

There are 2 trails on you left as you head towards Mushroom. Stay right on the way out and remember to take the 3d trail on the way back.

One of the photos is titled wrong.

15. Mushroom Rock

Mushroom is basically the beginning and the end of your single-track running. On the way out it is downhill to the creek. On the way back it is your final climb of the day.

There is a large boulder beside Mushroom head to left of that boulder and you will see the white blazes of the CT.

16. Descent from Mushroom

The decent from Mushroom Rock is technical with rocks, roots, and tight turns. About halfway there is a large rock wall with a 30' drop to your left. Pay attention and keep moving.

The CTC has recently done some work to improve the trail with new rock steps, a leveled running surface and border rocks to define turn number 1.

17. Suck Camp

At the bottom of the descent is a campground. Last year there was a group of 6 camped out when 500 runners came storming through. Yeah, that'll wake you up.

On the way back many runners have gone straight off bridge and started to climb. Yes, there are trails, but not the CT. Look for course markings and, when training, look for the white blazes.... More

18. North Suck Creek Suspension Bridge

The bridge wiggles and wobbles and undulates and offers a nice change. On your way back you may opt to splash some water on your head before the next climb because you are going to need it!

19. Initial Climb

This is the steepest climb of the day. Straight uphill. it is short, but right off the bridge and there it is with all the rocks and roots.

On the way back it is generally pretty tough on the thighs.

20. First Climb Sample

After the initial thigh-burning climb off the bridge the trail levels and then twists and turns and rises to the top. This section is generally runnable.

21. Top of first climb

At the top of the first climb you come to a rock wall with a boulder in the middle of the path. There is a narrow path between the two. The path goes slightly upward from there and then levels off for about a half mile across the plateau before descending to Suck Creek Road. One of the 2012 runners, Scott Hodukavich sent this raceday shot.

22. Plateau

After the first climb the trail levels off. Time to make your move. This is a fast section leading to an even faster downhill.

23. Start of Second Descent

This descent is fun. You see it coming when you see the rocky outcropping ahead. A tight path through the rocks a turn to the right and straight down hill.

24. Middle of 2d Descent

Be careful, at the bottom of the descent it gets rocky and rooty and there's a couple of tight turns.

25. End of 2d Descent

The drop here is very nasty, with rocks and roots. A very tight left followed by some short "S" curves to get around an outcropping and you are at AS 2 and South Suck Creek.

26. Bridge over South Suck Creek

After a nasty little rock strewn descent you arrive at this smaller water crossing and Aid Station #2. About 4.5 miles to Indian Rockhouse and next A/S. On the way back your suffering is about to begin with 2 climbs ahead of you. This is where the wheels come off for most runners.

27. Suck Creek Road

After A/S 2 cross road heading uphill and there are stairs on your left about 50 yds ahead. Nice rocky section ahead as you move into Prentice Cooper Wildlife Management Area.

28. Suck to Spur

At the top of the stairs the climb keeps going up a little further. It's then a rocky run for a few minutes to get around the corner of the ridgeline. You begin turning to the right and get a couple of nice runnable sections before descending into Spur Creek.

29. Spur Trail ****Warning****

Once leaving Suck Creek Road there is only one trail intersection that can throw you off. You will come to a rocky water crossing .6 miles in. On the opposite side there is a trail going down to left, to Hwy 27, and a trail going slightly up and to right, the CT to Indian Rockhouse. If confused, read the signs and follow app. Normally, a runner... More

30. Metal Stairs

You are close to halfway when you arrive at this rocky section of trail and a set of wooden steps with a metal frame.

31. Stone Steps

There are several rocky sections of the CT including 2 or 3 sets of stone steps. On the way back your thighs will enjoy this workout.

32. Technical Trail

Keep your wits about you on this trail. There are plenty of rocky sections.

33. Firebreak

The last landmark before reaching your destination is a firebreak, which allows for a glimpse of the river below.

34. Indian Rockhouse

Finally, you have arrived. Aid Station 2 on race day.