Saturday, September 30, 2023 • Nerstrand, MN • Course Map
Runners get the chance to trek through the wooded, tree-lined dirt and gravel trails of southern Minnesota’s Nerstrand Big Woods State Park at the Big Woods Run, a fall race that draws several hundred runners out for each year’s half-marathon, 10K, 5K and 1-mile Kids Run.
The location for the race as well as the time of year promise a cool-weather run, and its proximity to nearby Minneapolis (the park lies about 45 miles south of the city) means it’s not a difficult race to get to.
The terrain for the half-marathon course is hilly and challenging, race organizers say, while the 5K and 10K courses are generally flatter and easier.
The scenery is a big part of the attraction for the race as well — autumn is one of the peak seasons in the 2,882-acre park, as the turning of the leaves in this forest of sugar maple, basswood, elm, green ash and other tree varieties bring vivid reds, oranges and yellows to life.
St. John’s Church on Jacobs Avenue (just south of the entrance to the park) is the starting line for all races, which begin at 9:00 AM (for the half-marathon, 10K and 5K runners) and 10:30 AM for the children running in the 1-mile Kids Fun Run.
Race Weather & Climate
The early weeks of fall bring cooler and drier weather to the Nerstrand, Minn., area, which lies near the Nerstrand Big Woods State Park and about eight miles to the east of Faribault. In September, record temperatures here have reached as high as 92°F (in 1997) and as low as 11°F (in 1988).
On race day (Sep. 30), the average low is 38ºF and the average high is 61ºF.
- 2019 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2018 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2017 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2016 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2015 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2014 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2013 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2012 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2011 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- 2010 Big Woods Run Half Marathon Results
- $43 – $55 for the half marathon
- $36 – $42 for the 10K, 5K
- $15 for the 1.6-mile prairie walk
To reserve your spot in the 2023 running of Faribault’s Big Woods Run Half Marathon, register online at RaceRoster.com here.
Official Race Website
Ever run in the Big Woods Run Half Marathon race? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.