Welcome to the inaugural Land and Sky Relay, debuting on Saturday, November 2, 2019. This four-person relay race will take teams on a sixty-four mile journey from Asheville to Cherokee, North Carolina through amazing valleys and up and down breathtaking ridges.
What an incredible day! We are so grateful to the many people who made this event possible: The teams and their supporters; Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort for their sponsorship and hospitality; our amazing staff and Transfer Point volunteers; the business owners, churches and private individuals that allowed us to use their property; the towns of Maggie Valley, Canton and Clyde and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; Haywood County Tourism and Development Authority; Lake Junaluska Conference Center; White Duck Taco for hosting the start; Haywood County Meals on Wheels, the consortium of EMS in Cherokee, and the individual from the Buncombe County Rescue Squad that donated their time. Results are posted below.
Online registration for the Land and Sky Relay opens at 9:00 AM on Tuesday, February 12, 2019.
Everyone on the team must be 21 years or older.
In order to provide the best possible experience in our first edition, the race will be capped at 150 teams.
Land and Sky has the most unique race categories in the business. We will recognize the winning team in the following categories:
Open Male & Female*
Running Clubs/Sport Groups/Stores
General – No Affiliation
* Teams in the open categories must be all of one gender. Teams in the other categories can be mixed however you want
If you don’t see your category in the list, that’s ok. If we get five or more teams from another industry, we will form a new category or we will have an General category for those fitting any of the others.
We urge all teams to challenge their peers to join them in this fun competition.
The winning team in each category will receive a team award that can be displayed for all to see and individual awards for each member of the team. Awards will be presented throughout the post-race party as categories become complete.
February 12-April 30 – $380 per team
May 1-October 31 – $460 per team
Friday, November 1 – Packet Pickup – 4:00-7:00 PM – White Duck Taco (380 Riverside Drive, Asheville)
Saturday, November 2 – Packet Pickup – 4:30-6:30 AM – White Duck Taco
Saturday, November 2 – Team Starts – 5:00-7:00 AM – White Duck Taco
Saturday, November 2 – Post Race Party – 3:00-8:00 PM – Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort
Each runner will ideally run three legs during the relay. They may be follow the usual 1, 2, 3, 4 – 1, 2, 3, 4 – 1, 2, 3, 4 format or you may structure the legs to fit your team. The only requirement is your team checks in at each transfer point and we identify the person running the next leg.
If someone gets hurt or cannot continue for some reason, other team members can pick up the slack and run extra legs.
Legs will range in distance from 2.7 miles to 8.0 miles. Those teams following the traditional 1, 2, 3, 4 – 1, 2, 3, 4 – 1, 2, 3, 4 format will see each runner complete the following cumulative distance:
Runner 1 – 14.9 miles
Runner 2 – 17.3 miles
Runner 3 – 18.3 miles
Runner 4 – 13.0 miles
Official Start Times
The start times will based on the team’s estimated per mile pace. Those with the slower times will go in the earlier slots; those with the fastest will go later. Do not put down a faster time just to start later. This will catch up to you and you might not reach the cut-off time to continue the race.
To estimate an accurate team pace, take the average of each members 10K race pace then add 45 seconds.
Teams will depart from White Duck Taco on Riverside Drive in Asheville and follow the French Broad River through the Old Leicester area of Buncombe County before connecting to Newfound Road into Haywood County. Once there, teams will go through Canton, Lake Junaluska, and Maggie Valley before reaching the Qualla Boundary of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Once there, runners will enjoy lightly traveled paved and graveled roads before finishing with their team mates at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort.
Leg Information Sheets (Maps, directions, notes, race director comments and elevation charts)
Your safety is our primary concern. Because all of the roads we will travel on will be open to cars, our requirements for active runners are a little more strict than other relays:
Every runner must wear a flashing light on their front and back during each leg.
During the hours of 5-8 AM and 4-7 PM, all runners must also wear reflective vests and head lamps.
Teams will be checked for compliance at all Transfer Points and those not meeting these requirements will not be allowed to continue.
All teams must start their final leg by 7:30 PM.
Once in Cherokee, teams will be able to cross the finish line together and celebrate the accomplishment and journey with their fellow competitors at a post-race party with free food from the Harrah’s culinary team, a free beer and other refreshments. Team awards will be handed out throughout the evening.
The Land and Sky Relay has a no refund policy.
Teams may substitute runners by completing the Substitution Form and submitting it by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by October 28 or in person at Packet Pick Up.
Each team is expected to be self-supporting. There will be portajohns at each Transfer Point but each team is expected to carry their own fluids and food.
There will be event staff and volunteers on each leg of the course as well as each Transfer Point. Public safety personnel will be at each busy intersection managing traffic.
A portion of all entry fees will be divided between charities serving the areas where you will run:
Buncombe County – TBA
Haywood County – Meals on Wheels
Qualla Boundary – TBA
Planning Your Trip
Haywood County has a wealth of exciting adventures available to adults and families. Please use the guide at visitncsmokies.com to find rooms, attractions and fun things to do in this beautiful part of Western North Carolina.
We will be traveling through three great tourism areas so if you are spending the night either before or after the relay, please consider these locations:
Lake Junaluska Conference & Retreat Center – Reservations can be made on their website lakejunaluska.com or by calling 800-222-4930
Creek ‘n Woods Vacation Rentals has 4 properties in the woods and on creeks or waterfalls in Maggie Valley that will sleep 8-14 people. Contact then at 828-926-5259 or check out their website, www.creeknwoods.com.