Course Route/Trail Description
Start times: 8:00 a.m. There will be 5 waves, 3 minutes apart. Chip timing by Racing Underground. Half Marathon cutoff at the first aid station and must finish in 4.5 hrs to be eligible for finishers medal.
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8k & Half Marathon Course Description: Don't be deceived by the drive to the start (which honestly is quite barren and boring) because hidden just a short distance from the start line is a magical wonderland of amazing and unique features. The single-track is welcoming and, well, perfect.
You will start with a meandering climb up a small creek bed weaving through unique rock formations before opening up into the dinosaur dancing floor; a gigantic smooth white slickrock surface with literally 100's of Therapod tracks. From here the climb continues a short distance further to a ridgeline with a nice dirt single-track and spectacular views of Salt Valley, Arches National Park and the snow-covered LaSal Mountain range.
The route continues with a fast curvy single-track downhill through a series of desert coves with cactus in bloom. The 8kers will continue to the finish and the half marathoners will continue to flow along the Dino-Flow single-track, a very fun trail.
After the second aid station at mile 6 the course gets more technical as you scamper up down and around the unique rock formations before turning up the Little Salty climb. The very welcoming aid station is along the ridge about 1/2 way up the climb where more amazing views await. You can see as far as the Bookcliffs, San Rafael Swell and the Henry Mountains.
The dirt 4x4 road along the ridge is cruisy, leading to the Baby Steps descent. Leaders will fly down the mile or two of the steps, although most will take the trail as its namesake recommends: with baby steps.
At this point in the race time will seem to have stopped and you will feel cozy, calm and you will be amazed how good you feel and how far you've come. Something about this course is very special: perhaps an aura in the air or the ghosts of ancient Indian athletes casting their spirit upon you. But don't get too out there or let your mind wander too much: instead stock up at the next aid station. The last couple miles are tough and will remind you that you are alive and human and you wind around the hoo doos and other unique geologic features. The final 1/4 mile to the finish is mostly downhill and fast. You will have earned your finishers medal!
Nature Lovers Scavenger Hunt
A FUN Challenge
At the start line you'll get a list of 15 nature-related items that you'll search for during the race, and take a photo of (bring your smartphone or digital camara.) If you find them all you'll receive a cool prize at the finish! It's not too hard. This event limited to the first 50 people who sign up, and the $10 fee will be a 100% donation to the non-profit group, Trail Mix, they build and maintain local trails. You can sign up online when registering.