Every year comes with a plethora of new and exciting opportunities and experiences for runners. Many runners opt to run half marathons throughout the year to help them stay motivated, get fit, and maintain their running routine. Plus, half marathons are a great excuse to travel and see the US. As a runner, you already know that there are so many incredible places to explore on foot. Keep reading for our list of the best half marathons worth traveling for.
The Race to Robie Creek half marathon is in mid-April every year, in Boise, Idaho. You begin in the Boise foothills and run through to the Aldape Summit. It is often considered the toughest half marathon in the Northwest. Thus, if you are looking for a challenge, or are a serious runner this is a great half marathon to do. Over the 13.1 miles, you will climb over 2072 feet. The next race is on April 16th, 2022, and the entry fee is $65 plus processing fees.
The Covered Bridges half marathon is so popular that it regularly sells out. This half marathon is on the first Sunday of June every year in Woodstock, Vermont. This picturesque location is definitely part of the appeal. The half marathon runs through the Vermont countryside with a clear view of the ski hills and shimmering rivers. Winners from each age group also win Vermont maple syrup and cheese to complete the whole northeast experience. The next race is June 5th, 2022, however, it is already sold out. Tickets for 2023 will release in early December 2022 and the entry fee is $90 plus processing fees.
The Gorges Ithaca half marathon is in mid-June every year in Ithaca, New York. This scenic trail takes runners through the Black Diamond Rail Trail and the Cayuga Waterfront Trail. Runners also get to enjoy a post-race party of locally catered food and beverages. The next race is June 11th, 2022, and entry fees are $95 plus processing fees.
The Anchorage Mayor’s half marathon is on the Saturday closest to the Summer Solstice in Anchorage, Alaska. This may be the best way runners can celebrate the longest day of the year. Runners can enjoy running through forested trails with endless mountain views. The next event is June 18th, 2022, and the entry fee is $45 plus processing fees.
The Missoula half marathon happens towards the end of June in Missoula, Montana. This half marathon offers fantastic views of the Rocky Mountains while you run through the Montana countryside. The trail takes you along the Bitterroot River to Downtown Missoula. Runners must be prepared for higher elevations as the race begins at 3,200 feet above sea level. The next race is June 24th, 2022, and entry fees are $77 plus processing fees.
The Napa to Sonoma Wine Country half marathon is in Mid July every year, in Napa, California. This half marathon is a point-to-point run through California wine country. The trail starts at Cuvaison Estate Wines and ends at Sonoma Plaza. Runners get to experience amazing views throughout and finish with superb wine tastings. The next event is July 16th, 2022, and entry fees are $180 plus processing fees. This may seem steep, however, all wine tastings are included.
The Aspen Golden Leaf half marathon is always scheduled towards the middle of September to take advantage of the gorgeous fall colors in Aspen, Colorado. This point-to-point trail starts in Snowmass Village and ends in Aspen. Many runners consider this the most scenic half marathon in the US. There are some major elevation changes on this backcountry trail so be prepared. The next event is September 17th, 2022, and entry fees are $80 plus processing fees.
The Bellingham Bay half marathon is in mid-late September every year, in Bellingham, Washington. The trail takes runners along Bellingham Bay, offering tranquil views throughout the 13.1 miles. Runners will experience a view of the San Juan Islands, Mount Baker, and the seaside. After the race, runners enjoy a festival with music, food, and a beer garden. The next event is September 25th, 2022, and entry fees start at $55 plus entry fees. Prices increase the closer you register to race day.
The Twilight Red Rock half marathon is in mid-October each year in Las Vegas, Nevada. Unlike most half marathons, this one begins just before sunset in Red Rock Canyon. Runners then run through the canyon while enjoying the glorious sunset, and the moon and stars as the sun fades. Once it’s dark, the bright lights of the Las Vegas strip can be seen in the distance. All runners are required to wear reflective clothing and a headlamp throughout the race. The next event is October 15th, 2022, and entry fees start at $85 plus processing fees and increase the closer you are to race day.
The Run Sedona half marathon is during the first week of February each year in Sedona, Arizona. This half marathon is challenging due to the hilly terrain and elevation. The average elevation throughout is 4590 feet above sea level, so ensure you are prepared. Held towards the end of winter, runners can enjoy comfortable temperatures while running through red rocks and sweeping valleys. The next event is February 4th, 2023, and entry fees are $75 plus processing fees.
The Zion half marathon is at the end of February/start of March each year in Springdale, Utah. This gorgeous trail through Zion National Park is challenging as it climbs 400 feet through the course. Runners will see mountains, waterfalls, canyons, and red rock formations throughout the hilly terrain. Now, this half marathon often sells out quickly, so if it’s on your list ensure you sign up as soon as possible. The next race date has not been announced yet, however, entry fees are $165 plus processing fees.
Running allows you freedom while experiencing new destinations and meeting new people. The above half marathons are worth traveling for and offer amazing experiences. Which will you be signing up for in the next year?