By Luke Paulson
Has the pandemic sparked a newfound passion for running? Have you increased your mileage now that the fall temperatures are here? Or maybe you are new to the area and are looking for some company on your post work runs. Well, luckily the Asheville area is home to an array of group runs. Actually, there are organized group runs most days of the week! All paces are welcome, no sign-ups required, open to the public, free, and fun!
These group runs all have additional guidelines in place due to Covid-19, so please respect these guidelines.
We have organized the runs by day of the week here for your convenience:
Meet here: Hard Times Trail Head, Bent Creek Experimental Forest, 375 Wesley Branch Rd, Asheville, NC 28806
Details: With at least three different pace groups to choose from, this is the Asheville area’s most well-known group trail run. While the exact routes vary, runners can expect to run 5-8 miles on the single-track and gravel trails throughout Bent Creek Experimental Forest. This run meets year-round, so bring a good headlamp/light during the darker months.
Food/Drink Afterwards? Generally not.
Organized by: North Carolina Mountain Trail Runners Association (NCMTR for short)
Meet here: Jus’ Running, 523 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804
Details: Weekly interval-based workout typically held at the UNCA track led by WNC running star Norman Blair. Total mileage volume is between 6-9 miles, including warmup and cooldown. This run meets year-round (except for a ~5 week hiatus in late December/early January).
Food/Drink Afterwards? Yes, generally.
Organized by: Jus’ Running/Norm Blair
Meet here: Archetype Brewing, 265 Haywood Rd, Asheville NC 28806
Details: Weekly Pub Run starting and ending at Archetype Brewing in West Asheville. Choose from the 2.5-mile or 4-mile route which takes runners on a nice tour of West Asheville and RAD districts.
Food/Drink Afterwards? Yes. Archetype Beer. Pizza Mind. Ghan Shan West.
Organized by: Jus’ Running
Meet here: Wedge Brewing at Foundation, 5 Foundy St, Asheville, NC 28801 (though sometimes at Wedge at Studios, check www.ashevillerunningcollective.com to double check)
Details: Weekly “Wedge Run” at Wedge Brewing Company’s Foundation location in Asheville’s River Arts District. Runners of all abilities are welcomed for this self-paced, self-guided jaunt along the French Broad River. The run follows a route that is 7.5 miles out-and-back, but turn around whenever you want for a shorter option.
Food/Drink Afterwards? Yes, Wedge Brewing beer. Food truck.
Organized by: Asheville Running Collective