MMT - A New Headquarters
The VHTRC Board agreed with MMT RD Stan Duobinis’s suggestion that we move the start/finish of the event from the Skyline Ranch Resort to the Caroline Furnace Lutheran Camp. Here is the explanation of that move:
The 2010 Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 Miler will start and finish at the Caroline Furnace Lutheran Camp and Retreat Center (CF) located near Camp Roosevelt in Fort Valley. This is the first time the event will not be headquartered at the Skyline Ranch Resort (SRR). The VHTRC believes that this significant change is in the best interest of the volunteers, the runners, and the event itself.
The move from SRR has not been made without a great deal of thought. SRR is a beautiful facility and embodies much MMT history. The new run headquarters will cause changes to the event and extra work for management and volunteers during the first year. But upon the recommendation of the race director, Stan Duobinis, the VHTRC Board voted unanimously to make the move.
Here is why we believe that the move to Caroline Furnace (CF) is good for the event.
Cost: The overall cost for our weekend activities at CF will be significantly less than what we have been paying at Skyline Ranch Resort (SRR). This will help us in our continuing battle against the rising overall cost of the event to runners.
Facilities: CF has everything we need to put on the event. There are many bunkhouses, sleeping porches, and camping locations. There is a dining hall where we can have the Friday meal and where we will be able to prepare post-run food. There is a very new shower house that will be feet from the finish line. There is plenty of parking. The water tastes good.
Exclusive Use: We will be the only group at the facility. There will be no one for us to bother or vice versa.
Location: CF is in the middle of the current course. This means that we can use the current course and only change the where we start and finish. (We will not use the Buzzard Rock section of the old course (the former first three trail miles) and we will add the new Brown’s Hollow trail. Otherwise, we will do the prior course in the same direction.)
There are other advantages to the new location. A runner will never be as far from the start/finish as he was when he was on the southern section of the old course. Thus, drops will be easier to deal with. Also, runners will be at the aid stations along Route 211 much later and should be more spread out. This should reduce the parking problems at that location.
Support: The management of CF has been very supportive of our needs. We are optimistic that we can build a favorable relationship with the facility. A good example of the receptivity of the CF authorities is that they have readily agreed to charge those staying at the facility (in bunk houses, sleeping porches, or camping) by the weekend. No more early check-out times to deal with on Sunday!
Travel Distance: While SRR is closer to modern hotels than CF is, the difference is not great. Additionally, there are four different towns with hotels that are about the same distance from CF. While SRR was about seven miles from Front Royal, the CF is only a few more miles from civilization. It’s 10 miles from CF to Luray, 11 miles to Woodstock, 15 miles to New Market, and 14 miles to Mt Jackson. All of those towns have hotels, markets, restaurants, etc.
While the move to CF will not be without dislocation and adjustment, we strongly feel that, overall, this will be good for the run as it enters its second 15 years.
The VHTRC Board and MMT RD