Saturday, May 22, 2021 • Hamden, CT • Course Map
Runners get the chance to trek through the gorgeous, challenging hills of this corner of New England backcountry as well as take in both colonial American and Native American history at the all-new Hamden Hills Half Marathon & 5K, which is set for its 9th annual running on the last weekend of May 2021.
The race will take the field of runners through the part of southern Connecticut known as the “land of the Sleeping Giant,” named for the stretch of mountains about eight miles north of New Haven that actually looks like a giant asleep on the ground (you can learn more about its history and the legend of the Sleeping Giant at Damned Connecticut, a website devoted to weird and unexplained stories throughout the state).
In fact, the race will start just a few miles south of Sleeping Giant State Park where the giant himself lies, on the York Hill campus of Quinnipiac University (which, interestingly, is named for the Native American tribe that lived here in the 1630s, when the area was settled by the Puritans).
From the parking lot next to the university’s TD Bank North Sports Center, the course for the race heads south and west along Sherman Avenue, starting off with a sharp downhill in the first mile and continuing with more hills in the first few miles of the race.
Organizers describe the race route as “the toughest half marathon and 5K in Connecticut,” so expect plenty more hills as you continue heading southwest through the northern edges of Hamden and into the rural country roads just outside town.
The course continues heading west until runners make it into West Rock Ridge State Park, where they make a counter-clockwise loop around the northern end of the park before heading back onto Chauncey Road and Dunbar Hill Road, and then retrace their steps back to the Quinnipiac York Hill campus for the race finish.
While you’re in town, there’s also plenty of natural and historical sites to take in and see, from the Eli Whitney Museum (built on the site where Whitney originally built his armory to manufacture muskets for the army back in the late 1790s, and today features exhibitions and workshops for students and teachers on Whitney’s inventions) to the campus of Yale University, which lies just a short drive south from Hamden.
Race Weather & Climate
Located just north of New Haven Harbor in southern Connecticut, about 5 miles north of New Haven and roughly 30 miles southwest of Hartford, Hamden typically sees cool to mild temperatures and the city’s rainiest month of the year in May, which has brought record temperatures here as low as 26°F (in 1944) and as high as 95°F (in 1996).
On race day (May 22), the average low is 48°F and the average high is 69°F.
- 2019 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2018 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2017 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2016 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2015 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2014 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2013 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 2012 Hamden Hills Half Marathon Results
- 8:00 AM – half marathon
- 8:15 AM – 5K
- $65 – $75 for the half marathon
- $30 – $40 for the 5K
To reserve your spot in the spring 2021 running of the Hamden Hills Half Marathon or 5K race, register online at Active.com here.
Official Race Website
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