Been training hard all summer? Enter a race to see how you stack up.
When the dog days start to wag to a close and fall is the air, it’s time to put the miles you’ve logged all summer long to the test. Not the competitive type? No worries. Competition can be light-hearted. Here, we give you a list of foot races that are fun for the fleet. For a full list of August and September events in Colorado, go to www.elevationoutdoors.com/index.php/events-calendar/
NEDERLAND: AUGUST 1
LaSportiva Eldora Trail 10k Run
One of the most scenic and challenging 10K trail runs in the Front Range, this race traverses the dirt trails of Eldora’s Nordic Center. The Eldora Trail 10K Run is part of the LaSportiva Mountain Cup—13 of the best trail races in the U.S. that offer up $25,000 in prize money. No matter how you place, you’re guaranteed a LaSportiva tech tee and a good time as part of your entry fee.
BOULDER: AUGUST 13
Pearl Street Mile
Few things hurt like running as hard as you can for one mile. Join 1,000 other masochists racing through the streets of downtown Boulder. See if you can beat last year’s winning time of 4:10. Just because it’s only several minutes of your life doesn’t mean you won’t feel the repercussions well into the following week.
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS: AUGUST 16
11th Annual Ski Haus Continental Divide Trail Run
Any race that requires a gondola ride to get back to your car is worthy in our book. This glorious 16-mile trail run finishes atop Thunderhead. There are two aid stations on the course, but you should plan to carry your own water—for yourself and your pooch, who is permitted to run with you, so long as Fido is on leash.
LEADVILLE: AUGUST 22
Leadville 100 Ultramarathon
Ready for one of the toughest 100-mile races in the country? Runners start at 4 a.m., climbing and descending 15,600 feet, with elevations ranging from 9,200 to 12,620 feet. No one has ever finished in daylight, except Matt Carpenter, who set a course record of 15 hours and 42 minutes in 2005. In fact, over half the folks at the starting line don’t make it across the finish line in the allotted 30 hours.
BUENA VISTA: AUGUST 23–28
2009 GORE-TEX TransRockies Run
In search of a Colorado-style honeymoon? Consider running with your beloved from Buena Vista to Beaver Creek through the heart of the White River and San Isabel National Forests. The 113-mile race is done in pairs over the course of several days and is fully supported by a professional event team who takes care of your food, accommodations and on-course support.
DENVER: AUGUST 29
One of six races in SkirtSports’ wildly successful national series, the SkirtChaser 5K pits men against women. In this sexy spin on running, the women get a head start in the “Catch Me” wave, and the men start 3 minutes later in the “Skirtchaser” wave. The first athlete to cross the finish line, man or woman, walks away with $500. A block party with free beer and live music awaits all finishers.
COLORADO SPRINGS: SEPTEMBER 7
American Discovery Trail Marathon, Marathon Relay and Half Marathon
Save your knees, run a marathon on dirt. Now in its 9th year, this Labor Day weekend race offers beautiful views of the Pikes Peak region. In case you’re not up for a full marathon, this year’s lineup includes a four-person relay marathon option, in addition to the half marathon option.
OURAY: SEPTEMBER 12
Imogene Pass Run
Every year, 1,500 people run 17.1 miles from Ouray to Telluride by way of 13,120-foot Imogene Pass. The mostly dirt route captivates runners with its steep-peaked alpine setting and gorgeous vistas—but this race is best known for its notoriously squirrely weather conditions. Be prepared for sun, rain, sleet, hail, snow, fog and wind, sometimes all in the same race.
FORT COLLINS: SEPTEMBER 21
Crossroads Half Marathon and 5K
Formerly known as the Easy Street Half, the Crossroads Half follows the Poudre River and Spring Creek Bike Trails. The course ends on the asphalt city streets, for a fast, flat finish. The 5K is mainly on city streets with a portion on the bike trails.