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Downhill at Dawn Half Marathon

May 29, 2021 @ 6:01 am - 10:00 am


Down Hill At Dawn Half Marathon
The Ridgecrest Conference Center in Black Mountain is the start line for this mostly downhill half marathon that takes runners on a scenic combination of paved and forested gravel roads from Ridgecrest to Old Fort.  Starting at 6:01 AM, runners escape the heat of late May and the crowds of city races.  Capped at only 600 runners, this race sells out every year and become one of the more popular half marathons in the region. Later that day, the Downhill at Dusk 5K will take runners on a fast course from Ridgecrest to Black Mountain.

Start Time:


May 29, 2021
6:01 am - 10:00 am
Event Category:



Ridgecrest Conference Center
1 Ridgecrest Dr.
Ridgecrest, NC 28770 United States
+ Google Map

Race Information

Entry Fees


Packet Pickup/Late Registration



This unique half Marathon will wind it’s way for 13.1 miles around Black Mountain, North Carolina, down the Old Fort Mountain on Old Highway 70 and finish at the First Baptist Church in Old Fort. The first 3 miles, on pavement, will be out and back starting from the LifeWay campus at Ridgecrest. The first 1 ½ miles will be slightly downhill. The return 1 ½ miles will be back uphill to the main campus. Once back at the LifeWay Ridgecrest campus, runners will be turning to go down Old Fort Mountain. The next 10 miles, mostly downhill, will offer the runner three miles on packed dirt and gravel and and seven miles on pavement. There will be a couple of places along the course where there will be some gradual uphill grades, but it is primarily a downhill run beginning at an elevation of 2700’ and ending at an elevation of 1600’. Water stations will be located every two miles down the course. Port-A-Jons will also be provided along the route.

The course is USA Track and Field certified (USATF Certificate Number NC19010BDS).
Downhill At Dawn Half Marathon Course Map

Time Limit:
There is a time limit of 3 1/2 hours to complete the course.

Additional Info.

All guest’s who have a room reservation for the 2020 race at Ridgecrest Conference Center will have it canceled and be refunded.

Past Races Photos
Please click HERE to see pictures from the 2018 race.

Please click HERE to see pictures from the 2019 race.

Post Race



The race will utilize chip timing. Your chips are on your race bib so don’t crinkle them up.



Cancellations & Transfers

The Ridgecrest Conference Center felt the right thing to do would be to refund everyone the full amount of the entry fee they paid for the 2020 race(s). If you previously canceled through IMAthlete, you will still be receiving a refund. The discount code you received with your original cancellation will no longer be valid.

The refund will be processed through IMAthlete and could take 4-6 weeks to receive. The refund will appear on your credit card statements at I AM Athlete, LLC or IMAthlete.com. Unfortunately, we will not be able to refund service fees charged by IMAthlete. Any questions concerning the refund can be addressed with one of their representatives at support@imathlete.com or by calling 877-462-7979, extension 5 or 2, during the hours of 8:00 AM-5:00 PM PST, Monday through Friday.


All of the volunteers are from the Ridgecrest Conference Center. Please thank them as you make your way through the course.

Please email general race questions to greg@gloryhoundevents.com