Saturday, March 21, 2020 • Calistoga, CA • Course Map
A few hundred runners come out each year to take part in the Napa Valley Trail Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K — including nearly 200 in the half marathon alone — an early-season counterpart to the local trail race known as the Napa Wine Country Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K that takes place on the same course in Calistoga’s Bothe Valley State Park each October.
Just as challenging and hilly as the autumn race, the Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon also features the same gorgeous scenery, with trails surrounded by forests of towering redwood, oak and bay trees.
The springtime race for both full- and half-marathoners begins at the Bothe Valley State Park picnic area, just off Highway 29. From there, the out-and-back course for the 13.1-mile race takes runners westward out along the park trails, including Coyote Peak Trail, South Fork Trail, Ritchey Canyon Trail and Redwood Trail.
Many of the single-track trails that participants follow run alongside the waters of Ritchey Creek for much of the early and later parts of the race, which is basically a 6.5-mile loop course that participants run twice — after reaching the aid station back at the picnic area, runners then run the same course a second time, just like in the autumn-season race.
Runners have six hours in which to complete their race — whether they’re running the full or the half marathon — and so will need to keep a pace of 27:30 minutes per mile or better for the half marathon.
Because this is a trail race, runners also are encouraged to carry water bottles or hydration packs with them to ensure they’re properly hydrated between the aid stations along the course. Headphones are not allowed on the course.
The race begins at 9:00 AM for all three races, and entrants will need to bring money for the park entrance fee to Bothe Valley State Park on the day of the race.
Here’s how the race organizers describe it: “Babbling streams will be your soundtrack as you challenge yourself on the lush single track within Bothe-Napa Valley State Park. The course is a bit challenging with the hills, streams and rocks — which makes it all the more exciting and rewarding.”
Race Weather & Climate
Nestled in Napa Valley’s world-famous wine country, near the towns of St. Helena and Napa, Calistoga tends to see cooler and much wetter conditions in the late winter and early spring than in the summer, when temperatures are generally hot and dry.
In March, temperatures average between 40°F and 67°F — on the day of the race (March 21), the average low is 40°F and the average high is 67°F — while rainfall totals average just under 6 inches, making March Calistoga’s third-wettest month of the year.
- 2019 Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon Results
- 2018 Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon Results
- 2017 Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon Results
- 2016 Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon Results
- 2015 Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon Results
- $60 – $80 for the half marathon
- $70 – $90 for the full marathon
- $40 – $70 for the 10K
To reserve your spot in the spring 2020 running of Calistoga’s Napa Valley Trail Marathon, Half Marathon or 10K race, register online at the event website by clicking here.
Official Race Website
Ever run in the Napa Valley Trail Half Marathon? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments box below.