Ohio > Athens Marathon & Half Marathon
Athens, OH • Sunday, April 13, 2014 • Course Map
Between 900 and 1,000 runners cross the finish line in both races combined each year at this race along the banks of the Hocking Canal, which connects the river by the same name with the Ohio River in southeastern Ohio, as the Athens Marathon & Half Marathon unfolds along a gorgeously scenic route that takes runners from the green, tree-lined campus of Ohio University on an out-and-back trail along the canal.
The 13.1-mile course for the half-marathon, much like its 26.2-mile
counterpart, is mostly fast and flat with the exception of a fairly
steep downhill that descends from the start of the race at the
university campus (at Court & West Union Streets) to the second
mile marker. From there, the race flattens out all the way to the
turnaround point on the canal at the 6.45-mile point, where runners
then turn around and head back along the course they've just run.
Runners get a mix of springtime sun -- as well as often
still-chilly temperatures -- along with a mix of semi-urban course
through town with the backwoods bicycle trail known locally as the
Hockhocking Adena Bikeway, a 19-mile biking trail along the Hocking
Canal named for the Adena Native Americans who lived along the river
more than 2,000 years ago. Both half- and full-marathon participants
begin their run along the trail just after the 1.5-mile point in the
race, and stay on the trail for approximately the next nine miles.
The bikeway takes runners along what was once a railroad bed used by
the Columbus and Hocking Valley Railroad lines, though today it's known
for entirely different varieties of vehicles -- mountain bikes,
rollerblades, wheelchairs and non-motorized scooters, in addition to
lots of walkers. In the springtime, when the race takes place, the open
fields and greenspaces along the trail come alive with many kinds of
blooming wildflowers, including wild Geranium, Dutchman's Breeches,
Large-flowered Bellwort, Phlox, Virginia Bluebells and many others.
The last mile and a half of this out-and-back race splits off from the
rest of the course at the same spot where runners first entered the
bicyle trail, and takes participants along the intown stretch of the
bikeway all the way to Schafer Street, which funnels the field along
the final few hundred yards of the race toward the
finish line at Ohio University's Pruitt Field, at the track around the
Race Weather & Climate
Located in the southern half of the state, about an hour's drive southeast of nearby Columbus, the city of Athens generally experiences mild to sometimes still quite cold weather in the early spring, with relatively even precipitation year-round.
||Day of Race
||Rain: 3.03 in.
||Snow: 0.8 in.
See the race route map for the Athens Half Marathon
See race website
To reserve your spot in the early spring 2014 running of the Athens Marathon or Half Marathon race, visit the event website.
Official Race Website
Leave a Comment
Ever run in Ohio's annual Athens Half Marathon? Share your impressions, stories and tips from the event.