The Crooked Compass Adventure Trek


New Date: TBA

As we’ve continued to observe the Covid-19 pandemic unfold, we have reached the decision that it’s in everyone’s best interest to postpone the event. As many of you are no doubt aware, the states of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut have all declared variations of shelter-in-place mandates. Our own city, Philadelphia, just announced that a lockdown will begin tomorrow morning here, and we expect other states and municipalities to follow suit. By the time we get to the week of the event, we anticipate that many people won’t be allowed to travel to the race site. Our hope is that the warmer weather will offer some reprieve and that the park will allow us to reschedule for this upcoming summer. We will keep you all updated on those details as they take shape. 

“Always in the big woods when you leave familiar ground and step off alone into a new place there will be, along with the feelings of curiosity and excitement, a little nagging of dread. It is the ancient fear of the unknown, and it is your first bond with the wilderness you are going into. What you are doing is exploring.”
-Wendell Berry, The Unknown Wilderness: Kentucky’s Red River Gorge

The Inspiration

At Rootstock Racing, we love scouting our race courses. The idea for the adventure trek came from one of our many scouting adventures, which often involve long rambles through unknown and sometimes unmapped woodlands, usually on foot. With our adventure trek, we hope to share the treasures we find along the way, allowing racers to take in the landscape and enjoy a healthy dose of adventure and navigational challenge, without worrying about bikes and boats.

The Race

The Crooked Compass Adventure Trek is part-adventure racing, part-rogaining, and part-walk in the woods! Solos and teams of 2-4 will travel by foot, using pre-plotted water resistant maps and compass as they locate as many checkpoints as possible within the time allotted.

The 2020 race takes us back to Thurmont, Maryland, but don’t let the repeat location fool you. You’ll experience new terrain and a totally new course, with the same great Rootstock community feel.

The Crooked Compass serves as great training for bigger events, whether you are taking on a 24 hour adventure race, a multi-day expedition race, or our very own two-day Stockville in the fall. And if you’re new to adventure racing, this is a great introductory event that will challenge and give you a taste for what the sport is.

For 2020, we estimate that full-course racers will cover roughly 25 miles, depending on navigation and route choice. The mandatory course will be under 10 miles. Most maps will be 1:24,000. Any remaining will be 1:30,000.

Event Info:

  • Date: April 4, 2020
  • Time: 7:00AM to 5:00PM
  • Where: Thurmont, MD
  • Team Size: 1-4 racers
  • Divisions:
    • All-Male
    • All-Female
    • Coed
    • Solo
  • Lodging
    • We recommend the Super 8 in Thurmont, MD. The hotel is near gas stations, some fast food, restaurants, and a grocery, and they offer breakfast. Check back here for info on a special rate during race weekend.
    • Frederick, MD or Gettysburg, PA have more options, though they are both further away from the start/finish.
    • There are some local campgrounds in and around the State Forest.

Gear List: Available here!