Tree Tops Trail Races

8.5 Mile, 5k, & 1 Mile

September 23, 2023

Dupont State Forest

Join us Saturday, September 23, 2023, for the Inaugural TreeTops Trail Races in DuPont State Recreational Forest near Brevard, North Carolina!

The races offer a unique opportunity to explore the spectacular 10,000 acres of rolling hills and towering trees that make up this beautiful forest. Run or walk in the one mile or 5k run/walk events, or take on the 8.5 mile challenging trail race - but beware! With nearly 1,000 feet of elevation gain it’s no walk in the park!

Celebrate your journey through nature with a super unique succulent plant for all participants and a finisher medal for those who tackle the 8.5 mile course. Join us at the Dupont Forest Festival afterwards from 10am - 3pm to visit with vendors, hike, yoga, bike, hunt waterfalls and learn outdoor recreation tips to last you a lifetime. Admission to the festival is FREE!

The TreeTops Trail Races are not just any ordinary event - they’re an exclusive experience only available within Dupont State Forest! So don’t miss out on this tree-mendous event and join us for an unforgettable journey through DuPont State Forest - roots down, branches up!

Want a reason to run further? Finishers in the 8.5 mile event will receive a custom wood finisher medal! 

All finishers of the one mile, 5k and 8.5 mile races will receive a succulent.


Course Descriptions


The one mile TreeTops Trail Race is ideal for those who want to experience the beauty of nature while engaging in some physical activity at Dupont. The looped course features wide forest roads and some double track trails, taking participants through a range of terrains from smooth dirt roads to more rugged terrain with a few areas of roots and rocky surface. This makes it perfect for runners and walkers alike, as well as for families with kids or older folks who may just want to enjoy, walk and take it at a slower pace. The route offers one water station at .8 miles. The one mile trail race is a great way to get out into nature and enjoy an unforgettable experience at the Dupont Forest Festival.


The TreeTops 5k Trail Race takes participants through the trails and woods of Dupont State Forest. The event is for both runners and walkers of all abilities. The route has a mixture of wide forest roads, double and single track trails, and surfaces such as dirt, gravel and some rooted areas. There are two water stations available – one at mile .3 & 2.7, and the other at mile 1.3 - ensuring that you stay fueled throughout your race. The course is primarily a loop route that allows you to see more of the beautiful forest. With a stunning natural backdrop complemented by the beautiful surrounding landscape, TreeTops Trail 5k Race promises an unforgettable experience for all who take part in it!

8.5 Mile - COURSE MAP

The TreeTops 8.5 Mile Trail Race at Dupont State Forest is a trail runner’s dream race. This challenging endurance run will take you through some of the most beautiful trails that this forest has to offer. The route includes single and double track trails, wide forest roads, dirt, gravel, rock and rooted surfaces, as well as a stinker hill that will challenge even the most experienced trail runners. 

To give you a chance to refuel, there are two water stations along the way - one at mile 3.8 & 8.2 and the other one at mile 6.8. The course is in the shape of a figure 8, taking you through some of Dupont’s best trails such as Hickory Mountain, Jim Branch, Ridgeline and Thomas Cemetery. 

This 8.5 mile adventure is sure to be an unforgettable experience for all trail runners and nature lovers alike! So come on out to Dupont State Forest and join us for an epic race!

Event Schedule

  •   7:00 AM EDT - Registration & Packet Pickup at Picnic Shelter (7am - 9:45am)
  •   8:00 AM EDT - 8.5 Mile Race Start
  •   8:30 AM EDT - 5k Run/Walk Start
  •   9:45 AM EDT - One Mile Fun Run/Walk Race Start (un-timed)
  • 10:00 AM EDT - Award Ceremonies
  • 10:00 AM EDT - DuPont Forest Festival begins

We are thrilled to announce JAMBAR will be the official nutrition/energy bar partner of the race!

JAMBARS were created by the co-founder of the original PowerBar, Jennifer Maxwell. Jennifer worked for four and a half years to create the perfect bar. “Everything in a JAMBAR you could eat off a spoon!” JAMBAR is featured in this month’s Runner’s World magazine as one of the top bars of the year for their Mango flavor!

Great Swag!


Register before August 20th at midnight and get a FREE short sleeve, custom, Bella Canvas TreeTops Trail Races shirt with your registration! Available in both Adult & Kids’ sizes!

Beginning August 21st, you can add a shirt to your registration for $15. Shirts will only be available in limited sizes and quantities.


Grab a cozy, Bella Canvas TreeTops hoodie to wear all Fall and commemorate your awesome accomplishment! Add yours to your registration to guarantee your size, or pick one up on race day (sizes and quantities may be limited!)

Parking & Packet Pickup

There will be limited parking available at the race. We HIGHLY SUGGEST that you carpool with friends and family members!

Parking will be available at:

  • Guion Farms Parking Area
  • Field near the start/finish area

Packet Pickup will be held on race day, Saturday, September 23rd, at the Picnic Shelter from 7:00am - 9:45am.


Want a reason to run further? Finishers in the 8.5 mile event will receive a custom wood finisher medal! 

All finishers of the one mile, 5k and 8.5 mile races will receive a succulent.


Overall (Top 3 in each gender)
Masters (Top 1 in each gender)
Age Groups (Overall top 3 in each gender)

  • 12 and under
  • 13-19
  • 20-29
  • 30-39
  • 40-49
  • 50-59
  • 60-69
  • 70-79
  • 80+

Fleet Feet Asheville will provide Gift Certificates to the top 3 Overall winners and top 1 Masters winners.

All winners will also receive a TreeTops Trail Races custom campfire mug! (IMAGES COMING SOON!)


The awards ceremonies for the 8.5 mile and 5k events will take place at approximately 10:00am.

Prizes and Awards can also be picked up at Fleet Feet Asheville, Tuesday after the event, after 3pm, or shipped for $10.


Friends of Dupont State Forest

Friends of DuPont Forest campaigns for investment and policies that keep the water clean, the wildlife safe, and the trails awesome!

We CARE for the trails, PROTECT the Forest, and INSPIRE love for our public lands.

We Take CARE of the Trails 

DuPont Forest has one of the best trail systems in the Southeast  and is a favorite among hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians, and summer camps. Since the very beginning, when the State Forest was opened to the public in 2000,  Friends of DuPont was there to help build, protect, and maintain the trails. 

We PROTECT the Forest

Friends of Dupont Forest is a strong advocate for the Forest. You could say we speak for the trees. From water quality, to trails, to public safety, to wildlife, we campaign for policies and investment that protect and conserve the Forest.

We INSPIRE Love for Public Lands

We believe that outdoor education is an important aspect of conserving and protecting DuPont Forest for generations to come.

Join us and be a VOICE for the Forest! 

Friends of Dupont State Forest

It is the mission, duty and purpose of iDream Athletes Foundation to provide opportunities for Western North Carolina youth and adults who are unable to pay for sporting event fees, coaching, travel expenses and/or equipment to train for and/or participate in our WNC sporting events. This tax-exempt non-profit provides needs-based scholarships. The amounts to be gifted are determined on a case-by-case basis through a criteria-selection process. In addition, we will assist in fueling the growth for local running, cycling and multi-sport champions, teams, clubs, locally owned stores and communities in Western North Carolina by providing resource and financial support when conducting our key activities.


Q: Is the one mile course suitable for a jogging stroller?

A: Yes! The one mile course is suitable for heavy-duty, off-road style jogging strollers. However, the 5k and 8.5 mile routes are not suitable for strollers due to their terrain and route features.

Q: Can I bring my dog to the race?

A: Yes! Well behaved dogs on leashes are permitted at the race. Please do not use retractable leashes and ensure your dog is leashed throughout the entire run. For your own convenience as well as that of other competitors, please remember to pick up after your dog if necessary.

Q: Are there any amenities or facilities provided at the race?

A: Yes! There are various amenities and facilities provided at TreeTops Trail Race. This includes hydration stations along the way to provide water for both yourself and your pet if necessary, medical aid such as first aid kits, should you need them, porta-potties in case of emergency, and a refreshment area with snacks and refreshments after you finish your race.

Q: Is there an age limit to participate in the race?

A: No! Everyone is welcome to participate in the race regardless of age. Children under 18 must have a parent or guardian’s signature on the registration form.

Q: Can I register on the day of the race?

A: If the races are not sold out prior to race day, you can register in person. Please note that day-of registration fees are slightly higher.

Q: Do I need to stay for the awards ceremony if I win an award?

A: No! You do not have to be present at the awards ceremony in order to receive your award. Awards can be picked up at Fleet Feet starting Tuesday, September 26th after 3pm or mailed for a shipping fee.

Q: Will there be things for me and my family to do after the race?

A: Yes! We encourage everyone attending to plan to spend the entire day at beautiful Dupont State Forest! There will be plenty of activities, freebies, vendors and food for you and your family to explore and take part in.

Q: Is camping allowed at Dupont State Forest?

A: No! Camping is NOT permitted at Dupont State Forest.

Q: What happens if it rains on race day?

A: The TreeTops Trail Races will take place rain or shine! However, in cases of lightning or thunder, we may delay the start time until it passes.


Did you register to participate in-person but can’t make it on race day? You don’t have to miss out! You can transfer your registration to the virtual event at any point before the start of the race. In the virtual event, you’ll run anywhere you like, post your results, and have your swag mailed to you after the event.

TRANSFERS: All participants can transfer into the virtual version of their event up until the start of the event. Email support@idaph.net to request the transfer. There will be no refunds for the price difference between events. Transfers during the week of the event will cost $10 (starting Monday, September 18th).

Transfers between participants are prohibited. Participants who run with another runner’s bib will be automatically DQd and bandits will be banned from future iDaph events.

REFUNDS: We have a small, but mighty team that is working on all the details to produce this event safely for you and everyone in our community in attendance. We are incurring the expenses for production well before the day of the event, and we will not be able to provide a refund to you should you want to cancel your registration, or if the event itself has to be cancelled due to a change in the status of the pandemic, weather, an act of god, or other unforeseen circumstance.

DEFERRALS: We do not allow deferrals from race to race. If you’re unable to make it on race day, you may switch to the virtual option.

CANCELLATION: In the event of an unforeseen circumstance, such as an emergency, an act of god, not receiving approval of final event permits, or change in pandemic status resulting in the inability to have the in-person event, we reserve the right to cancel the event and automatically convert all in-person registrations to the virtual option. Should this occur, your swag will be mailed to you for free.