Fall is a season seemingly made for runners, with the cool crisp air and fall colors practically inviting you to spend the day going for a long run. With the changing of the seasons just around the corner, here are a few races that are worth registering for – even if only for the views. Bonus: most of these races have tons of free beer afterward.
Interested in kicking your fall foliage up a notch and running a race on trails? The Mount Bohemia Trail Running Festival has a distance for every competitor, ranging from 5k to 50k. The races take place October 1st and 2nd, which is prime time for fall colors in Michigan. At the top of Mount Bohemia, you will experience gorgeous views unlike any other in the Midwest. (Need to crash train for an ultramarthon? It's possible, more here and here).
Following along the shores of the Hudson River and through the Hudson Valley Village, the Fall Foliage Half and 5k guarantee gorgeous weather and views during this October 1st race. Whether you are looking to race, get in a supported long run, or show off your CrossFit skills with the “Sicko” challenge (10 miles interrupted with periodic burpees, tires, sandbags, etc.), this race has something for everyone – just in a more beautiful setting.
The Indianapolis Half Marathon, held October 8, 2016, is great for fall lovers and history buffs alike. The race takes runners through historic Fort Harrison State Park, which is home to a former Citizen’s Military Training camp, Civilian Conservation Corps camp, and World War II Prisoner of War camp. Recognized by Runner’s World as one of the top scenic races in the country, the Indy Half Marathon is in its 21st year and promises unparalleled views, cool weather, and fast times, as it is also host to the USATF Indiana Half Marathon Championships for 2016.
It’s not a surprise that one of the most scenic runs is located in Maine – after all, the state even has a website dedicated to fall foliage. The Mt. Abram Ascent is a 3.5-mile race held October 8th that takes racers to the top of Mt. Abram over the course of 2 miles and a 1,000 ft gain in elevation. At the top, you will be rewarded with views of the Western Maine foothills before you begin the 1.5-mile descent.
In October is there any reason to run a race that doesn’t have beer at the finish line? This October 9th race follows a 3.6-mile course that starts and finishes at Harpoon Brewery, taking runners through tree-lined roads filled with spectators in traditional German costumes. At the finish line enjoy bratwurst, polka, and, of course, beer.
Fall colors not your style? Another scenic race with lots of racing options to choose from ranging 1 mile to marathon, this stop in the Rock ‘n Roll race series is held November 8-9th. Besides racing to the beat of your own personal concert, racers will run past towering mansions, historic downtown squares, Forsyth Park, Savannah State University, and nearby Daffin Park, featuring William Grayson Stadium.