Trail Races

5 Trail Races Perfect For Runners Of All Abilities

Whether you are a trail veteran or a complete newbie, we've rounded up a list of trail races that cater to different experience levels.

The Expert: Kylee Schuler

trail races
Growing up with an elite distance-runner dad, it’s no surprise that Kylee Schuler followed in her father’s footsteps. Having run more than 500 races since the age of 12, the nutritional health coach decided a few years ago to take her racing off-road to better enjoy her hometown of Carbondale, Colo. The 30-year-old now craves the challenging beauty only trail running offers. Check out her top race picks to run off the beaten path.

5 Great Trail Races

Golden Girl
Skill Level: Beginner
I might be slightly biased about the Golden Leaf Half Marathon (the race takes place in my backyard), but since it sells out in less than two hours, it must be good! From Snowmass to Aspen, runners are treated to the beautiful colors of the season’s changing leaves. The rolling 13.1-mile course is just right for beginners or experienced trail runners. Don’t forget to hang around for the packed post-race raffle, which typically lasts over an hour!
Sept. 24, 2016, Snowmass , CO

Historic Hike
Skill Level: Advanced
The oldest cross-country event in the United States, the Dipsea Trail Race first ran in 1905. While the 7.4 miles of trails are technical and include running up some stairs, the scenery makes it worth the challenge. Runners finish at Stinson Beach, about 30 miles north of San Francisco—a great place for post-race fun!
June 11, 2017, Mill Valley, CA

Hot Flash
Skill Level: Intermediate
Taking place when the majority of the country is dealing with snow, the Moab Red Hot 33K is the perfect way to escape freezing weather. On a slick-rock course with views of the La Sal Mountains and unique rock formations, runners are treated to nature’s eye candy. From the awesome swag (a trucker hat and tank top) to the excellent post-race party, I think this race should be at the top of everyone’s list.
Feb. 18, 2017, Moab, UT

Heart Throb
Skill Level: Intermediate
With race distances of 50K, 15 miles and 4 miles, the Smith Rock Ascent offers an option for every ability. But be warned: Steep elevation gain makes the race not for the faint of heart. Your hard work won’t go unrewarded as the spectacular views of Smith Rock State Park at the top deliver a truly memorable experience.
May 2017, Bend, OR

Twisted Sister
Skill Level: Advanced
Frequently rated as an extremely challenging course with all of its rocks and roots, the 7 Sisters Trail Race boasts 12 miles of singletrack terrain on a portion of the New England Trail. The course keeps runners from feeling lonely as they double back toward the finish.
May 2017, Amherst, MA