Sunday, October 1, 2023 • Sacramento, CA • Course Map
Note: A virtual option is available for this event. Registration details are included below.
Named for what locals often called this city for decades — Sacramento was once widely thought of as simply the “cow town” urbanites had to drive through on their way from San Francisco to Lake Tahoe — this race has been known as the Urban Cow Half Marathon, Relay & 5K since 2010, and has been a fixture on this city’s road race calendar since 1977.
The 13.1-mile half marathon and the relay event all follow an out-and-back loop course, starting near the golf course at Sacramento’s William Land Park, just off Freeport Boulevard.
From there, the course runs through the park’s trails and meadows for the first mile and a half, passing by the nine-hole William Land Golf Course and along 14th, 13th and 12th Avenues.
After about the first mile and a half, the course then begins winding through the city, zigzagging through neighborhoods and city streets, passing through mostly residential areas and then a quick run through part of the city’s industrial area on its way toward the riverfront marina.
Run alongside the Sacramento River. Next, runners reach the riverfront, and from there they run a quick out-and-back along Marina View Drive, and then begin a long flat straightaway along the banks of the river, running along the bicycle path that runs parallel to Interstate 5 on their way down to the turnaround at Miller Park.
Once they make the turn, runners then head north along Riverside Boulevard toward 13th Avenue, passing through neighborhoods with beautiful older homes on their way to the park and the home stretch toward the finish line back in William Land Park.
Throughout the race, the course is generally fast and flat, though runners will encounter a few gentle hills (which climb roughly 20 to 25 feet in elevation) around mile markers 5, 7 and between miles 10 and 11.
Start in two waves. Organizers plan to start runners in the half marathon in two waves: the first, which starts at 7:30 AM, is for runners who expect to finish the race in under 2 hours; the second, which starts at 7:40 AM, is for those whose finishing time will be over 2 hours.
Race Weather & Climate
Nestled in the state’s inland valley area, about an hour and half drive from San Francisco to the southwest, Sacramento typically sees hot, dry weather in the late summer and early fall. In October, record temperatures here have reached as low as 34°F (in 1946) and as high as 102°F (in 1987).
On race day (Oct. 1), the average low is 57ºF and the average high is 85ºF.
- 2022 Results
- 2021 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2019 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2018 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2017 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2016 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2015 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2014 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2013 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2012 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 2011 Urban Cow Half Marathon Results
- 7:30 AM – half marathon, wave 1
- 7:40 AM – half marathon, wave 2
- $69 and up for the half marathon
To reserve your spot in the 2023 running of Sacramento’s Urban Cow Half Marathon, 5K or Relay race, register online at RaceRoster.com here.
Official Race Website
Ever run in the Urban Cow Half Marathon? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.