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Michigan > Betsie Valley Run Half Marathon, 10K & 5K
Thompsonville, MI  •  Sunday, October 5, 2014  •  Course Map

Set for its 8th annual running in 2014 along a combination of flat stretches and occasionally steep and challenging hills along the Betsie Valley Trail in the northern part of Michigan's Lower Peninsula, the Betsie Valley Run -- which also includes a 10K and a 5K for runners and walkers -- shows off some of the state's most scenic areas at the height of the fall season, when the gorgeous autumn leaves are making their transition to the full spectrum of red, yellow and orange.

The 13.1-mile half marathon stars and finishes at Crystal Mountain Resort, a ski and golf resort that lies about three miles to the west of Thompsonville, and takes participants on an out-and-back loop route from the resort through Thompsonville and out onto several miles of the 22-mile Betsie Valley Trail. Once it reaches Pioneer Road, the course turns sharply southward and then begins the long, steady stretch back to the finish line near the resort.

Designed for hiking, walking, running and biking, the Betsie Valley Trail is part of a rails-to-trails initiative that converted the former Ann Arbor Railroad into a trail that runs from Thompsonville all the way to the shores of Lake Michigan, ending near the towns of Frankfort and Elberta, Mich.

Along the way, runners and walkers cross a combination of paved/asphalt and compacted stone trails, as well as several wooden bridges over the numerous streams and creeks along the trail.

Those thinking of taking part in the race should be ready for at least a few significant hills in this race, particularly in the last few miles -- there are two steep hills that rise up between the 10- and 12-mile markers, rising and quickly falling about 50 feet in elevation each. The last mile of the course (thankfully!) is a long, flat stretch toward the finish.

Race Weather & Climate

Nestled among the mountainous areas of the western edge of Michigan's Lower Peninsula, the town of Thompsonville generally experiences mild to cool and sometimes cold weather in the early fall. In October, record temperatures here have reached as low as 21°F (in 1952) and as high as 84°F (in 2007).

October Avg. Day of Race Monthly Precip.
Low: 42°F Low: 46°F Rain: 3.26 in.
High: 57°F High: 62°F Snow: 0.3 in.

Course Map

See the race route map for the Betsie Valley Run Half Marathon

Starting Times

9:00 AM - adult races
11:30 AM - kids' races


$40 for the half marathon, if registered by August 1, 2014
$50 after Aug. 1


To reserve your spot in the early fall 2014 running of Thompsonville's Betsie Valley Run Half Marathon, 10K or 5K race, register online at the event website.

Official Race Website


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SEE ALSO: 12-, 16- and 20-Week Half Marathon Training Plans
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