13.1 Unforgettable Summer Half Marathons

Photo courtesy Revel Rockies Marathon.

“This is what you have been waiting for. No doubt you are nervous, but you know that you are ready. You earned this opportunity. And you were born to fly… you are ready, you are powerful, and you belong. Now go get it.” — Kara Goucher

1) Covered Bridges Half Marathon • Woodstock, VT

The scenic, pastoral beauty of rural Vermont is on display at this race, which unfolds through four of its famed covered bridges, along a point-to-point course on open farmland alongside the Ottauquechee River.

Sun, Jun 4 • View this race »

2) Hatfield McCoy Half Marathons • Goody, KY

A run through the hills and hollows of eastern Kentucky — and yes, through the real “Hatfield-McCoy” feud country — this race features two 13.1-milers, the first and second halves of the full marathon course.

Sat, Jun 10 • View this race »

3) Revel Rockies Half Marathon • Evergreen, CO

With a stunningly gorgeous route set in the Rocky Mountaints just outside Denver, this all-downhill half starts at 7,410 feet above sea level and finishes at 5,759 feet, still more than a mile high.

Sun, Jun 11 • View this race »

4) Mayors Midnight Sun Half Marathon • Anchorage, AK

Framed by spectacular mountains all around the city and forested trails along the course, this race offers breathtaking views of the nearby Alaska wilderness as it unfolds through Earthquake Park, Point Woronzof and the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail.

Sat, Jun 17 • View this race »

5) American Fork Canyon Half Marathon • American Fork, UT

Starting at Tibble Fork Reservoir high above the city in the Wasatch Mountains near Salt Lake City, this race too follows an all-downhill route that drops about 1,800 feet between the start and the finish.

Sat, Jun 24 • View this race »

6) Pictured Rocks Road Race Half Marathon • Munising, MI

With its mixture paved backcountry roads and forest trails, runners here will tramp through the hills and mountain ridges of the Pictured Rocks National Seashore, within sight of its birch forests, sand dunes, cliffs and the shoreline of Lake Superior.

Sun, Jun 25 • View this race »

7) Fueled By Fine Wine Half Marathon • Dundee, OR

Framed by the rolling vineyards and farmlands of northwest Oregon’s Willamette River Valley and the majestic peaks of Mount Hood, Mount Jefferson and the Cascade Range off in the distance, this race shows off several of the city’s wine-growing areas.

Sun, Jul 9 • View this race »

8) The Scream Half Marathon • Jonas Ridge, NC

You’re gonna be sore after the 2,000-ft. drop at this race, which is run through the Pisgah National Forest and features some of the most scenic, unspoiled mountains of western North Carolina.

Sat, Jul 15 • View this race »

9) Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon • Chicago, IL

With more than 14,000 finishers, this race is a big one. But the course is worth it, taking you from Grant Park through Chicago’s city streets and over the river several times, before finishing in front of the lake next to the famed Buckingham Fountain.

Sun, Jul 16 • View this race »

10) Tread Nightly & Tread Brightly Half Marathons • Charlotte, NC

The trails of the U.S. National Whitewater Center near Charlotte offer stunning views by the morning light for the “Tread Brightly” half, and ones you can only see wearing a headlamp at night at the “Tread Nightly” Half (the night before).

Fri, Jul 21 & Sat, Jul 22 • View this race »

11) Catharine Valley Half Marathon • Watkins Glen, NY

A gentle ascent of less than 250 feet from the start to the half-way point, followed by an equally gradual descent in the second half, await runners at this race through the green, lush parks of the Catharine Valley Trail in New York’s Finger Lakes.

Sun, Aug 5 • View this race »

12) Monkey Face Half Marathon • Terrebonne, OR

At first, this race’s name might seem strange, but when you understand where the name comes from it makes perfect sense — the “Monkey Face,” a 350-ft.-high rock pillar in Oregon’s Smith Rock State Park.

Sat, Aug 19 • View this race »

13) Running With The Bears Half Marathon • Greenville, CA

Known for its gorgeous green mountain views and wide, expansive alpine meadows, Northern California’s Indian Valley is a mecca for outdoors enthusiasts and this race features gorgeous views in all directions.

Sat, Aug 19 • View this race »

13.1) Blueberry Cove Half Marathon • Tenants Harbor, ME

Run through a Maine town where boats are said to outnumber cars, from the startling line at Blueberry Cove Camp to the winding back roads with views of the ocean crashing against the beaches and rocky shorelines.

Sun, Aug 27 • View this race »

4 comments… add one
  • Russell June 21, 2017, 12:39 pm

    Ran the Mayors 1/2 Marathon in Anchorage last weekend. What a spectacular event. Sunshine for 22 hours a day and the weather was magnificent. Highly recommend this event.

  • Dave @ Run The Money April 25, 2017, 8:57 am

    #1 and #13.1 sound like they are set in some beautiful scenery. I should add them to my half marathon bucket list.

    When I lived in Bucks County, I was a part of a Winter Series set in Tyler State Park. One of my favorite races was the Covered Bridge 5K. There’s something about the setting of a park with a covered bridge. Just another great thing you get to experience as a runner.

    Thanks for sharing,


  • Dave @ Run The Money April 25, 2017, 8:54 am

    I always enjoy these round-up posts of top races. #1 and #13.1 sound like a lot of fun with some beautiful scenery. When I lived in Newtown, PA, I was part of the Winter Series races in Tyler State Park. One of my favorites was the Covered Bridge 5K. Not sure what it is about a covered bridge set inside a beautiful state park. It’s just one of the many wonderful things about being a runner!

    Thanks for sharing,


    • Kelly May 22, 2017, 8:55 am

      I grew up in Newtown, PA, but wasn’t a runner. Now I am, and I feel like I missed out on a lot of great stuff there!

Leave a Comment