Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon

Saturday, January 6, 2024 Alpine CA

Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon - Alpine CA

In an unforeseen twist, the annual Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon was met with a unique challenge this year. Due to forestry permitting issues, organizers made the bold decision to merge it with the Horsethief Canyon Trail Triathlon, creating a spectacular and one-of-a-kind event that had the local running and triathlon communities buzzing with anticipation.

The heart of this event, the racecourse, took center stage in the excitement. Set against the breathtaking backdrop of the Pine Creek Wilderness, this year’s race promised a truly remarkable experience. Thanks to special permissions granted by the U.S. Forest Service, participants had the privilege of exploring these pristine landscapes while tackling the demanding course.

The Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon course was set to be an out-and-back journey, with the trail primarily following a dirt Fire Road. But this route was no ordinary jog in the woods. The initial leg of the race was an uphill challenge that pushed athletes to their limits, testing their endurance and grit. However, the hard work would pay off, as the second half of the course offered a tantalizing reward—a mostly downhill descent leading runners back to the finish line. This unique course design offered runners an opportunity to aim for the coveted “negative split” and complete the second half of the race faster than the first.

One standout feature of the course was the fire road itself. It was exceptionally wide and devoid of technical obstacles, ensuring that footing remained steady, even in unpredictable weather conditions. This meant that competitors could focus on their race strategy and performance without constantly worrying about treacherous terrain.

To ensure the accuracy of the race, a dedicated volunteer stationed at the turnaround point diligently recorded the runners’ numbers, confirming that each athlete made it to the designated midpoint. This level of commitment to a smooth and fair competition highlighted the passion of the event’s organizers and volunteers, who were determined to make this year’s Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon and Trail Triathlon a memorable experience.

As participants laced up their running shoes and tuned their bikes for this exceptional race, they couldn’t help but be in awe of the unique blend of challenging terrain, natural beauty, and community spirit that defined this year’s event. The melding of the Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon and the Horsethief Canyon Trail Triathlon was nothing short of spectacular, promising a thrilling race that would leave a lasting impression on all those fortunate enough to take part. With respect for the course and the surrounding lands, athletes and spectators were set for an unforgettable day of athleticism and camaraderie in the heart of the Pine Creek Wilderness.

Race Weather & Climate

Alpine, California, is a picturesque town nestled in the eastern part of San Diego County. It is located approximately 30 miles east of downtown San Diego, one of Southern California’s major cities, offering residents a peaceful retreat while still being within a reasonable driving distance of the city’s amenities. Alpine is also in close proximity to the United States-Mexico border, lying about 27 miles to the east, making it a unique location for those looking to explore the southern border region of California.

On January 6th, Alpine, California typically has average temperature of 71.4℉.

Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon Race Results

Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon Course Map

See the race route map for the Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon course map here.

Starting Time

The half marathon start time is 5:30 PM.


To reserve your spot in the 2024 Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon, you can use the registration link here.

Race Fees

  • There is a $70.00 fee for the half marathon.

Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon Race Website

Horsethief Canyon Half Marathon Website

See more races in: January, California