The Plan

The Cat’s Tail is a rugged mountain marathon.  In the first five years of the race we have had 432 finishers under the 10 hour time limit.  Only 11 DNF’s total!!  We attribute these high success rates to our tough entry requirements which are:

You must have minimally completed since Jan 1, 2020:

1) Cat’s Tail 2021 or 2020.

2) A legitimate trail marathon distance or greater race (no fat-ass or other unorganized events) with at least 4,000 feet of elevation gain within the cut-off.

3) The Escarpment Trail Race 2021 within the 6 hour cut-off.

4) A mountain ultra distance trail race within twice the time as the winner.

5) Another race that you think qualifies you to run 26+ miles of rugged Catskill trails with 7000+ feet of elevation gain in a reasonable time that will not have us out looking for you when it gets dark.

6) If you are unsure if you qualify, inquire at

Following the same route as past years, it will begin at the Fox Hollow trail head off rt 28 in Shandaken, NY.  Runners will go south over Panther Mountain and Giant Ledge before reaching rt 47.  They will run just off the road south for a short distance to the Slide Mountain trail where they will turn east and ascend Slide, Cornell, and Wittenberg Mountains.  Slide is the highest peak in the Catskills at 4,184 ft.  On the northward descent off Wittenberg, runners will turn east onto a newly (2014) created trail leading them over Cross Mt. before heading northward over Mt. Pleasant and Romer Mt. and depositing them a short distance from Phoenicia and the finish line.  The distance is around 26.5 miles with 7000+/- ft of ascent.profile

This is a semi self-reliant event with only 2 full aid stations and a couple of water drops.  Runners will be required to carry certain supplies throughout the run to ensure their safety in this remote area.  The Cat’s Tail should not be someones first marathon or trail race.

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