Sunday, May 8, 2011
Part of a day filled with race events that include a 13.1-mile half marathon for both individual and relay runners as well as a 5K and three bike events with distances of 100, 75 and 55 kilometers, the TriColumbia LIFEfest Blossoms of Hope Half Marathon, Relay & 5K takes runners along the rolling hills of this planned community that lies roughly halfway between Washington, D.C., and Baltimore.
Just over 180 runners crossed the finish line in the half marathon alone at the race's 2010 running, which follows an out-and-back route that starts and finishes at The Mall in Columbia along the Little Patuxent Parkway.
From there, runners follow a winding route that takes them along the parkway past the campus of Howard County Community College, the community of Cedar Woods and through and past parts of the Middle Patuxent Environmental Area, a 1,021-acre nature park area that's home to more than 100 species of birds and features more than five miles of hiking trails.
From its peak elevation between the first and second mile markers, the course drops nearly 150 feet by the time runners approach the mile 6 marker, and then rises again when they reach the half-way point of the race along Grace Drive. From there, runners follow the rolling hills back along the route they've just run, and finish with a downhill stretch over the last two miles back into the finish at the mall parking lot.
Weather & Climate
Located in central Maryland, about 30 miles northwest of Washington, D.C., and about 20 miles southeast of Baltimore, the community of Columbia typically experiences some of its mildest weather conditions of the year in the early spring season, and usually sees relatively even precipitation year-round. In May, Columbia's average monthly temperatures range between 75°F and 49°F, while rainfall totals average just over 4.7 inches for the month.
To reserve your spot in the spring 2011 running of Columbia's Blossoms of Hope Half Marathon, Relay & LIFEfest 5K, register online at the event website.
Half Marathon Course Map
Leave a Comment or Review the Blossoms of Hope Half Marathon >>
Ever run in the half marathon at Maryland's annual Blossoms of Hope Half Marathon, Relay & LIFEfest 5K?
your impressions and read fellow runners' stories
and tips for the event.