8 Stunning ‘Sunrise Run’ Half Marathons

Dreamstime

Dreamstime

1) Vigor Big Cottonwood Canyon Half Marathon • Cottonwood Heights, UT

This stunning race through the Wasatch Mountains above Salt Lake City starts at 6:00AM, at about 7,700 feet above sea level at Utah’s Solitude Mountain Resort. From there, it drops nearly 2,700 feet through the canyon to the finish at Old Mill Park.

May • Race info & signup »

2) Mountains 2 Beach Half Marathon • Ventura, CA

Towering mountains, green hillsides and valleys, and the waves crashing along the shoreline of the Pacific Ocean are just some of the scenery runners will see at this race, which starts at 6:00 AM along the Ventura River Trail that parallels the Ojai Freeway.

May • Race info & signup »

3) Downhill @ Dawn Half Marathon • Ridgecrest, NC

Paved mountain roads and wide gravel trails that wind through the majestic wooded forests of North Carolina near the southern edge of the 510,000-acre Pisgah National Forest are the setting for this race, which begins as dawn is rising at 6:01 AM over the mountains in the distance.

June • Race info & signup »

4) Revel Rockies Half Marathon • Evergreen, CO

Designed with amazingly gorgeous views and the chance to record a personal record time, and even to qualify for Boston, this race near Denver follows an all-downhill course, mostly alongside the Bear Creek Trail, a winding path that follows the creek as it slowly carves a downhill path out of the mountains and into the valley.

June • Race info & signup »

5) Bryce Canyon Half Marathon • Bryce, UT

Starting at 6:00 AM on Utah’s Highway 63, this race turns first onto National Scenic Byway 12, where runners are treated to spectacular views of the sunrise as it lights up the pink cliffs and red walls of the canyon ahead, before the next few miles within Bryce Canyon National Park.

July • Race info & signup »

6) Timpanogos Half Marathon • American Fork, UT

After the 6:00 AM start at the Tibble Fork Reservoir, just over 6,400 feet above sea level, runners get a chance to trek through some of northern Utah’s most beautiful scenery, as the mountains of American Fork Canyon rise over both sides of the highway.

July • Race info & signup »

7) USA Half Marathon Invitational • San Diego, CA

You’ll have to be able to qualify for this race in one of 11 age categories — ranging from times of an hour and 10 minutes to 2 hours, 30 minutes — at this race in “America’s Finest City,” which makes a loop around downtown and through Balboa Park.

November • Race info & signup »

8) Space Coast Half Marathon • Cocoa, FL

Famous for its few long, sloping gentle hills, and for being Florida’s oldest marathon, this race — which is run just a few miles away from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center — starts at 6:00 AM and unfolds entirely along the waters of the Indian River, between Cocoa and Cocoa Beach.

November • Race info & signup »

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