Maximum field size is 50 racers. Don't wait to register!

Need to rent a kayak? Click here to reserve one!

Legend claims that local resident Archibald "Bear" Tolley spent much of his life in the 1800s hunting bear throughout the ridges and hollers around Buchanan. Explore some of Bear's stomping ground as you kayak, run, and mountain bike a "mostly trail" triathlon that showcases the beauty and challenging terrain of Botetourt County. You just might encounter the ghost of Bear Tolley if you don't eat and hydrate properly over this tough course.

Starting in the Buchanan Town Park, the 23 mile course will begin with a 6 mile kayak on the beautiful James River, featuring numerous Class I and II rapids.  After a quick transition to trail shoes, you will have one mile of flat road to get warmed up, then you will hit the trail for a 5 mile section that will take you up and over steep and rocky Cove Mountain to the Bearwallow Gap trail head. Watch out for the particularly gnarly section of the Glenwood Horse Trail known affectionately as the "Devil Trail." Is it a "trek" or a trail run? You decide. Either way, there will likely be periods of power hiking for most. There will be no rest for the weary as you climb on your mountain bike for the final 12 mile stage of fire road, single track, and paved road back to the finish at the Buchanan Town Park. This section includes the SWEET 5 mile long Mineshaft singletrack.

The course is steep and challenging. Expect to be on it for 6 hours or more. There are no time cut-offs (as long as you are making "progress") and the course is a great one if you are new to a "trail tri." (see note below)

***Note: both the running and mountain biking portions of the Bearwallow Breakdown are rocky and root-filled, with steep, technical descents. Participants should have trail experience! The river portion contains several Class II rapids and is a bit more challenging than the Buchanan Tri paddle.  Click here for a river map (see Map 4).  The race will be held rain or shine.  The paddling portion will be omitted in the unlikely event of high water (6 ft or over) making this event a duathlon.  Current river levels can be viewed here.

While you are training, be sure to check out these 10 Epic Blue Ridge Rides, including Mineshaft! 

Registration: $75 until 6/24, $85 after 6/24 and until 8/24; $95 after 8/24

Muddy Squirrel

Postponed for 2022

We'll try again in spring 2023