Race 2 - Smiths Gully

Race 2 course description

All runners will start on the famous Rob Roy Hill Climb venue before completing a scenic loop within the eucalypt bushland and more open farming land. The long course provide some sweeping views across the Yarra Valley and surrounding rural country side and are quite a contrast to the other courses in the series.

Each course includes a diverse mix 4wd roads and well groomed single track and pathways over undulating terrain. The running covers a number of hills, some are quite long and will get your lungs working before an enjoyable descent on the other side.

Add in plenty of friendly Aussie wildlife to keep you company and this new destination will provide some great running for everyone.

The courses

Long course: 19km, includes 620m elevation gain / loss
Medium course: 12km, includes 460m elevation gain / loss
Short course: 7.5km, includes 230m elevation gain / loss.

Course map


Elevation profiles

Long course:

Long Course Elevation Profile

Medium course:

Medium Course Elevation Profile
Short course:

Course description

Overall the courses provide some superb trail running characteristics – undulating single track all on well drained tracks with areas of bush and open country and plenty of great views. 

Long course - 19 km

(Course goes in anti-clockwise direction on the map)

Long course runners will do the western loop first in an anti-clockwise direction before entering One Tree Hill reserve and doing a clockwise loop in the forest. Complete both loops and then descend to the finish at the bottom.

This is one of our new favorite race tracks and we are sure you will enjoy the diversity and scenery of the track.  

Medium course - 12km

(Course goes in a clockwise direction on the map)

All runners commence at the start line of the Rob Roy Hill Climb and begin their run up the 695m race course before crossing over the spur and descending down to the valley before a long and tough climb up to One Tree Hill. This is followed by a fast and open descent before another tough little climb. This is followed by a lovely and slightly technical single track descent to Happy Valley Tk. before a final gentler and steady climb back up to the top of RobRoy Hill before a rapid descent to the finish.


Short course – 7.5 km

(Course goes in a clockwise direction on the map)

All runners commence at the start line of the Rob Roy Hill Climb and begin their run up the 695m race course before entering the One Tree Hill Reserve and its network of twisting, semi-technical trails.

After turning into the Reserve runners complete a short descent on some fun single track and at the valley floor can open up with a fast stretch along the Happy Valley Fire Trail. Turn right at the southern end to head skywards on a steady but longish climb back up to the ridgeline - there is plenty of features to keep you interested with the odd gully and bermed corner so keep your eyes on your feet and keep going! The track returns to the top of the Rob Roy hill climb and runners complete the run with a fast and steep descent including the HIIT Factory Home Straight to the finish line.

Water points

Water points will have cups of water and sports hydration available. Please take only what you can drink and place your cup in a bin afterwards.

  • Short course: There will be a water point on the short course located on Happy Valley Tk.
  • Medium course: There will be one water point on the medium course that will be located on Happy Valley Tk (same spot as short course)
  • Long course: There will be two water points on the long course that will be located at the top of RobRoy Hill climb, plus the water point on Happy Valley Tk.
  • Finish line: There will be water taps and sports hydration available at the finish line. We encourage you to bring your own re-usable water bottle/cup to use at the finish.

The HIIT Factory Home Straight

The HIIT Factory Home Straight is a short timed section of each course that leads into the finish line. Being just ~100m long we encourage you to crank up the legs and ‘sprint’ as fast as you can for a speedy finish whilst the crowd cheers you home!! Your HIIT Factory Home Straight times will be published in the results and we’ll award a small prize to the fastest (and funniest!) to add to the fun!

Check out the details of the HIIT Factory’s high intensity sessions to help your cross-training!

Passing etiquette

With a large number of runners a narrow trail there are a few points of common etiquette when it comes to passing a runner on the trail that we’d like all participants to be aware of. If you are a faster runner who wants to pass a slower runner on a narrow bit of track:

  • Let the slower runner know you are there and want to pass. Say something like, “Can I go past when there’s a chance...” or even “Track please” if you’re short of breath. Then wait for a wider section of track – don’t just barge on through
  • The slower runner can then say, “OK, go past on the right” or “just up here it’s a bit wider, go there”. But it’s good to acknowledge that you heard them and give direction for when they can go past
  • It’s also nice for the faster runner to say, “thank you, keep going” once you’re past – share the love
  • If you are going to pass then make sure you are actually faster, don’t pass if you are pushing 120% effort to get around them and then slow down afterwards
  • Slower runners don’t feel like you need to totally stop and bow down as a faster runner comes through, make space but keep trotting along as well

Course marking

Trail running events are quite different to road running events in that they require you to look and think about where you are going because, not only will you pass through some lovely wilderness, but you need to KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR COURSE MARKINGS. Trail running courses are not lined with fences or red and white flagging tape and will not have marshals every 10m ready to hand you a drink and direct you where to go every step of the way - you need to keep an eye out for and follow the course markings to make your way around.

Having said that, if you have your head up and are looking where you are going the course will be easy to follow and will be marked as follows:

The Long Course:

  • red and/or orange arrows (pegged into the ground and fixed to trees or bushes)
  • fluoro pink coloured plastic surveyor’s tape (tied to trees or bushes)

The Medium Course:

  • green arrows (pegged into the ground and fixed to trees or bushes)
  • green coloured plastic surveyor’s tape (tied to trees or bushes)

The Short Course:

  • blue arrows (pegged into the ground and fixed to trees or bushes)
  • aqua blue coloured plastic surveyor’s tape (tied to trees or bushes)

All track intersections will be clearly marked and care should be taken to follow the arrows. Surveyor’s tape will be placed immediately following a track junction to confirm you are on the correct track. Track markings on the longer, straighter sections, where there are no other options or intersections will be far more spread out so take your time at the intersections to make sure you are on the right track. Unless otherwise marked or directed, competitors should follow the most major track at all intersections. If there is no arrow at a minor track junction then continue along the major track.


The Trail Running Series presented by The North Face Race 2


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