- 5 miles/8K, 10 miles
- Road Race
I ran the 10-mile race at the Snowman Stampede, and when I arrived, the 5-mile race was already underway. There was plenty of parking across the street near the college, but I had to park in one of the farther lots because of the 5-mile runners. It took 5-10 minutes to walk to the race area, but it was a nice warm-up. I picked up my packet the day of, and it was a very easy process.
This is the same course that Colorado Runner Events uses for all of it's Winter Distance Series races, but I enjoyed it. It was an out-and-back, but out was one side of the river and back was on the other side, so while some of the course overlapped, it wasn't completely out-and-back on the same route. The course is on a bike trail, so there were occasional other runners and cyclists, but there was room for everyone. There is also dirt next to the bike path in many sections, so I was able to run about 50% of it on dirt, which was really nice.
The course goes over bridges and under roads, so there are some minor hills. Towards the end, there is a pretty steep (super short) hill with a hairpin turn, and then a short uphill before the finish line. There are a few gradual uphills as well. You pretty much follow the river the entire way, which makes for some decent scenery. The other side is the highway and there were a couple sections near construction sites. The course was pretty well marked - my Garmin said I had completed 10.06 miles when I was done, which is pretty close.
I was surprised that the first aid station wasn't until after the second mile, but the volunteers were great and each aid station had both Gatorade and water. Post-race, there was more water and Gatorade, as well as bananas, oranges, bagels, and muffins.
The expo had a nice assortment of vendors - Colorado Runner mag, Noosa yogurt, Runner's Roost, and a couple local businesses. The swag bag came with a short-sleeved shirt, an issue of Colorado Runner magazine, and some other samples and coupons from the vendors.
Overall, it was a well-marked, easy to follow course and well put together. I'd recommend it! And maybe you'll get as lucky as we did with 60 degree weather in February! :)