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September 8, 2018

Breaks Interstate Park, Virginia & Kentucky


Tier 1 - SOLD OUT

Tier 2 - SOLD OUT

Tier 3 - $110

Please review our Refund & Transfer Policies prior to registering.

 Breaks runners get 20% all Orange Mud products! Use code "NOE2018" at checkout all year long!

Breaks runners get 20% all Orange Mud products! Use code "NOE2018" at checkout all year long!


Race Info


Breaks Interstate Park is one of only two such interstate parks in the United States. Located on the Kentucky-Virginia border, "The Grand Canyon Of The South" received its name by the "break" caused in the rugged Pine Mountain by millions of years of erosion by the nearby Russel Fork River. It is the largest canyon east of the Mississippi River and reaches craggy depths of over 1,600'.  Daniel Boone is often credited for being the first person of European descent to discover the 5-mile long gorge in 1767.

The Breaks 40 Miler trail race is an extreme challenge for any runner. Starting and finishing within Breaks Interstate Park in Virginia, the race takes runners back and forth across the Kentucky-Virginia border and up and over the ruggedly tough Pine Mountain numerous times. Your breath will be taken away by the beauty of the scenery and the extreme challenge of the terrain at the same time. This 43 mile race will challenge even the best trail runners out there.

43 Mile Trail Race

Start Time:  6:00am on Saturday, September 8, 2018

Cut Off:  10:00pm on Saturday, September 8, 2018 (16 hours!)

Pre Race meeting and dinner

Our pre race meeting and dinner will take place at Conference Center at Breaks Interstate Park on Friday night before the race.  We will have packet pickup, a meal, and a pre-race meeting (packet pickup will be available on race day as well).

Meal tickets are $5 per registered racer and $10 for non-racing guests.  Pre race announcements will take place at 6:00pm.  It is CRITICAL but not required that you attend this meeting as we will be going over very important information about the course, cut offs, and other race details. Meal tickets may be purchased on site or in advance (preferred) via Ultrasignup. Click the button below to purchase your meal tickets.

Friday, September 7th


Conference Center

Breaks Interstate Park

Click here for directions to the Conference Center.

Parking is available at the Park. There is a $2 per vehicle charge to enter the park.

Race Day Packet Pickup and Check In

Saturday, September 8th


Shelter 1 across from the Breaks Interstate Park Conference Center.

Please park in the lots next to the amphitheater, Shelter 1, and the upper lot of the lodges. The lower lots are for hotel guests only.


entrance criteria

All runners must be 18 years of age or older to participate.  No exceptions.

There is no official qualifier requirement for the Breaks; however, we ask that you understand one thing. THIS IS NOT A RACE FOR FIRST TIMERS. The terrain is treacherous, and the elevation is extreme for a 43 mile race. If you have not completed an ultramarathon in the past, this is not the race to start. The Breaks 40 Miler requires experienced trail runners due to the variations in terrain, complexity of navigating the course, and elevation levels. It is HIGHLY recommended that you run at least one 50K race prior to running the Breaks.

mandatory gear

All runners must carry the following mandatory gear for the duration of the race.  This is non-negotiable.  

  • Capacity to carry minimum 20oz of water (bottles or bladder)

Your mandatory hydration will be checked at the start line.  Failure to have this at the start of the race or at any aid station will result in disqualification.  This is a safety issue due to the extreme conditions of the race course.  This is non-negotiable.  For questions regarding mandatory gear please EMAIL US.

Awards and SWAG

All participants receive a race shirt.
All finishers receive a customized Finisher Award.

Top 3 men and women receive a special award!

We stand by our belief that these are the BEST awards out there.  Just check out some of our other races if you're not sure!

CREWs , pacers, AND drop bags

Crews and pacers will be allowed for all competitors.  Crews may access their runner at the Upside Down aid station ONLY. This is mile 32.

All runners may also have a drop bag at two locations.  Drop bags will be available at the following aid stations:

  1. Not Even Close Aid Station - Mile 18
  2. Upside Down Aid Station - Mile 32.4

Pacers may join their runner at Elkhorn City at mile 32.4 and not before.

NOTE:  Please reference the following Event Guide for full event details.  This document will be updated as new information is made available.  


Our start and finish line is at the Shelter 1 picnic and playground area across from the Conference Center. There is a nice playground, charcoal grills, and plenty of sightseeing to be had while you are at the Breaks. Breaks Interstate Park also boasts several lodges, cabins, and even a water park! Bring your friends and family down to the Breaks to enjoy a fantastic weekend in the mountains.

Course Info

The Breaks 40 Miler is a 43 mile trail race on the Kentucky and Virginia border. The race starts and finishes at Breaks Interstate Park.  All runners start at the Breaks Interstate Park, follow a brief highway into Kentucky, and follow the breathtaking course over and along Pine Mountain before returning to the Park for the finish. 

The 43 mile course has approximately 11,400 feet of elevation gain and equal descent*. That is nearly 23,000' of elevation change in 43 miles! Click the buttons below for maps, downloadable GPS files, elevation profiles, and more.

NOTE: Runners must cross the Russell Fork River twice during the race. This will be done via raft and safety lines.

*All distances and elevations are based on GPS data and are approximate.

Aid Stations

There are 8 aid stations along the course. Three drop bag aid stations (at Middle Finger) and one crew aid station.

  1. Rat Hole: Mile 3.2
  2. Bubbly Guts: Mile 7.7
  3. Middle Finger: Mile 15.0*
  4. Not Even Close: Mile 18.0
  5. Middle Finger: Mile 21.0*
  6. Bubbly Guts: Mile 27.9
  7. Upside Down: Mile 31.9**
  8. Rat Hole: Mile 38.1

For full aid station details please reference the Official Event Guide.

*Drop Bags

**Crew & Drop Bags




start & Finish line: BREAKS INTERSTATE PARK - sHELTER 1

Breaks Interstate Park

627 Commission Cir

Breaks, VA 24607


Race Rules

Rules, rules, rules.  We need em, so listen up!

  1. Respect the land!  This race is run on both private land and public land across the George Washington Jefferson National Forest and Breaks Interstate Park.  We proudly support the US Forest Service, Kentucky State Parks, Breaks Interstate Park, and the private landowners who allow the trails to flourish.  As such any misuse of this great land will not be tolerated.  Next Opportunity strives for sustainability in all of our races, and we hold our runners to the same standard.  DO NOT litter, pick wildflowers, or otherwise deface the property in any way.  Failure to follow this rule will get you disqualified from the race and asked to leave the premises.  
  2. Stay on course and on trail.  Going off trail creates a negative ecological impact.  So if there is an obstacle in your path go through it, over it, or under it.  If there is mud, get muddy.  If there is water, get wet.  If there is a tree down, find a way over it.  This isn’t just about the environment.  It’s about challenging yourself.  
  3. Be respectful and courteous of each other, race volunteers, and other trail users.  Mistreatment of race volunteers, other racers, or other trail users will not be tolerated and will result in disqualification.
  4. Take nothing.  Leave nothing.  Leave no trace of your presence by taking any trash out with you.  Do not pick or otherwise deface any plant life.  This trail is extremely well-maintained, and we want to keep it that way. 
  5. Leave no injured runner behind.  Help your fellow competitors.  If you come upon an injured runner, help them if you can or run to the nearest race official.  Tell the race official the injured runner’s location, bib number, and nature of the injury.
  6. Only registered runners and official pacers will be allowed on the course.  No unofficial runners or "bandits" will be allowed.
  7. Stay on course.  Any runner who leaves the course must return to the point of departure on foot before continuing.
  8. All runners must check in and out of every aid station.  This is to ensure that everyone is accounted for and that everyone runs the full distance of each race.  If you do not check in/out at of any aid station you will be subject to disqualification.  There will be a volunteer at each aid station responsible for checking each runner in and out.  It is the runner's responsibility to make sure he or she gets checked in and out of every aid station.  When you arrive at an aid station, announce your bib number and make sure that you get checked in.  The same goes for when you leave the aid station.  Any runner who does not check in/out of every aid station will be disqualified and will NOT receive a finisher award.
  9. No smoking.  Smoking by runners, their pacers, or crew is not permitted on the race course or at official aid stations.
  10. No pets are allowed at the race.  This includes dogs on or off leash.  Per regulations related to our Next Opportunity insurance policies pets are prohibited on the race course and at the race sites for the duration of that event.  
  11. All cut-off times will be strictly enforced.  No exceptions.  Any runner not OUT of an aid station before the exact cut-off time will be pulled from the race.  Any runner not across the finish line before the final finish line cut-off time will be disqualified from the race.
  12. Runners may NOT receive any aid from anyone else between aid stations.  This includes crews at any location not designated as an official crew point.  Muling by pacers is strictly prohibited.
  13. Crews are limited to one vehicle per runner at every aid station.  The exception to this rule is at the start and finish line.


We need a small army of volunteers to pull off these races!  If you, your family, club, or organization are interested in volunteering please click the button below to fill out the quick sign-up form.

All Volunteers receive FREE Next Opportunity swag and a MINIMUM 25% off registration fees for any future Next Opportunity Events race (must volunteer for a minimum of 2 hours).  Work longer hours and receive even BIGGER DISCOUNTS.  Click the button below to see the volunteer opportunities and express your interest in volunteering.



Breaks Interstate Park 

Breaks Interstate Park has lodging options for everyone! The park has over 80 hotel rooms in their lodge, lake front and woodland cabins, and a campground with 138 sites. Click the button below to see all of the lodging options available at Breaks Interstate Park. HINT: If you stay in the Lodge you will be able to see your room from the finish line. No driving required on race day!

Surrounding Communities 

Our host communities in both Virginia and Kentucky boast a ton of lodging options. You can find cabins for rent, B&Bs, and hotels on both sides of the mountain. Nearby towns and cities are Haysi and Clintwood in Virginia and Elkhorn City and Pikeville in Kentucky. We are in the process of working on some lodging deals for Breaks runners, so stay tuned for that info to come later in February.

Stay Tuned!  More to come!