Course Description

The 50 mile course will have approximately 11,575ft of vertical gain. Click here for detailed course maps and elevation profiles.

**The 2014 course has been revised slightly. The race will begin by following the main park road to the Arthur’s Trailhead, giving runners two miles to spread out before getting onto the South Valley trail at the east Arthur’s trailhead parking (horse parking lot). We will also use the new Nomad trail connector from the Lory Park border to Sawmill. The 2014 course should be close to the same distance as the original 2012 course (~50.1 miles) and a half mile shorter per loop than last year.

Aid Station Segment Splits

Aid Station
Mile Split
Total Distance
Vertical Gain
Vertical Descent
Arthur’s Trailhead (No Aid) 2.0 2.0 268 115
Towers Road 5.1 7.1 1824 480
Horsetooth Trailhead* 3.2 10.3 296 1436
Towers Road 3.8 14.1 1641 484
Arthur’s Trailhead 3.4 17.5 323 1644
Soldier Canyon* 7.4 24.9 1444 1617
Arthur’s Trailhead 7.4 32.3 1617 1444
Towers Road 3.4 35.7 1644 323
Horsetooth Trailhead* 3.8 39.5 484 1641
Towers Road 3.2 42.7 1436 296
Arthur’s Trailhead 5.1 47.8 480 1824
Soldier Canyon Finish 2.3 50.1 115 268

*Drop Bags

Drop bags will be allowed at the Horsetooth Trailhead (Mile 10.3 and 39.5) and the Soldier Canyon finish (Mile 24.9 for the 50 milers). Horsetooth drop bags will not be returned to the finish area until after all 50 milers have cleared the station. If 25 milers need to leave earlier, they may drive to the aid station to pick up their bags.

Crew Access

Family and friends can meet their runners at the start/finish at Soldier Canyon, Arthur’s Trailhead, and the Horsetooth Trailhead. Runners will receive 1 pass into Lory park for the race. Any additional crew or family vehicles will need to pay the regular $7 park entrance fee. A Larimer County Parks pass or $6 day fee is required at the Horsetooth Trailhead. Carpooling is highly recommended to save on park fees and limit traffic and parking congestion at the trailheads. All trails are open to the public, so family and friends are allowed to run, hike, or bike on the course; however, pacing or crewing outside designated aid stations is not allowed and will result in the disqualification of your runner.

Course Marking

The course will be well marked with hot pink flagging tape plus extra pin flags and flour at important intersections. On longer stretches of trail, flagging will be placed approximately every quarter mile. Turns will be marked heavily with 3-4 extra flags before the turn and 3-4 flags within line of sight leading away in the right direction. So if you see a lot of flags, pay attention and watch for the next turn. If you don’t see any flags, you’re off course and need to turn back.

All trails in the park are well marked and the route can be run with a map and the following detailed directions. Any runner should be able to follow the course markings but if you are familiar with the directions below and carry a map, you won’t have any trouble on race day.

Detailed Course Directions

Start to Arthur’s Rock (East Valley) Trailhead:

The race will start at the gateway to the Soldier Canyon picnic area. Runners will follow the road out of the trailhead and head south on the Lodgepole Drive loop (where runner vehicles are parked) and will continue down the main park road to the Arthur’s trailhead.

Arthur’s Rock Trailhead to Towers Aid Station:

Take the first left into the Arthur’s horse trailer parking lot and head straight onto the east side of the South Valley loop trail. Immediately after crossing the park border, turn right onto the Nomad trail. At the next junction, take another right onto the Sawmill trail. Continue up Sawmill and take your first left onto the Stout trail, which will roll south to the Towers service road. Turn right on Towers Road (dirt) and continue up the hill until you reach the aid station.

Towers Aid Station to Horsetooth Trailhead:

From the Towers Road aid station, turn left onto the Spring Creek trail and follow it all the way down the Spring Creek Valley, making a left, and staying on the Spring Creek trail, at a three-way intersection by the creek at the bottom.

Follow Spring Creek for another half mile, after which the main trail will turn into the Horsetooth Falls trail and will take you back to the Horsetooth Trailhead aid station, which is also the main parking area for the Horsetooth Mountain Open Space.

Horsetooth Trailhead to Towers Aid Station:

From the Horsetooth Trailhead, take the Soderberg service road up to the Horsetooth Rock trail, and turn left, continuing on the foot trail up to the Wathan/Westridge trail junction. Turn right off of the Horsetooth Rock trail onto the Wathan trail and continue straight (stay left) onto the Westridge Trail and follow it north to Towers Road. Take a right on Towers and the aid station will be right around the corner.

Towers Aid Station to Arthur’s Rock Trailhead:

From the Towers aid station, take a left on the Mill Creek trail and follow it all the way back to the Arthur’s Trailhead in Lory State Park. Midway down Mill Creek, watch for a sharp left turn at the Loggers junction. Shortly after you enter Lory State Park, the Mill Creek trail will come to a T junction. Take the right onto the Mill Creek Link trail and follow that to the South Valley Trail and the Arthur’s Rock trailhead.

Arthur’s Rock Trailhead to Soldier Canyon Start/Finish Area:

Start up the Arthur’s Rock trail and about 3/4 of a mile up, take a sharp left to connect to the Howard trail. Follow Howard all the way up and around the back side of Arthur’s Rock. Take a sharp left onto the Timber Trail behind the rock. The first part of Timber is a 4WD logging road. About 3/4 mile down the road, take the 90 degree right turn onto the Timber single track trail. Keep left past Well Gulch and follow Timber all the way to the Timber Trailhead on the valley floor. Exit the Timber trailhead and take the short connector trail back to the Soldier Canyon start/finish.

2013 Arthur’s Trailhead to the 50 Mile Finish:

50 Milers will run the same 25 mile loop in reverse and from the last stop at the Arthur’s trailhead runners will stay on the East Valley trail all the way to the finish area.

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