Course Info

MMR-Course MapAll first-time racers must complete the entire race course prior to race day and attend the safety meeting.

The race course includes areas of extreme difficulty, with steep inclines and slippery loose rock and shale.

There is no guarantee any aid stations will be available on the mountain. Water and aid materials may be delivered by helicopter if weather permits.

Racers must:

  • have previous mountain running experience
  • be physically fit enough to easily pass by the Cut-off Checkpoint before the time expires.
  • be prepared to get themselves down the mountain, even if injured. Assistance is not guaranteed once you leave the race start.

Runners may limit their risk of bodily injury to some degree by running the entire race course several times before race day and wearing protective gear such as helmets, gloves, goggles, knee and elbow pads are recommended.

  • Carry your own water if you will need it during the race.
  • Water and medical services will be provided at the Finish Line.

Slope Steepness Averages 34 Degrees

MtMarathonDiagramMount Marathon is not quite as steep as has been previously reported. The true steepness — from the base of the mountain to the lip of the mountain just before the turnaround rock — averages 34 degrees. That figure was calculated using GPS data from several racers. Excluding the road approach, the vertical gain is about 2,675 feet in 0.9 miles.

Adult Division Race Course

  • The starting line is at 4th and Adams in downtown Seward.
  • Runners will leave the starting line and follow the road to the base of the mountain.
  • Runners will run to the top of the course, stepping on the timing mat while passing around the summit rock, and descend down the mountain to the finish line.
  • The finish line is one block south of the starting line at 4th and Washington Street.
  • Approximate race distance is 3.1 miles, with an elevation gain of 3,022 feet.

 Junior Division Race Course

  • The Junior Division Race follows the same trail to the finish as the adult race, but only goes half-way up the mountain.
  • Junior runners must round the marker at the halfway point and return down the mountain to the finish line.

Safety Tour

Most years a volunteer  group of veteran runners lead a safety tour on Mount Marathon in mid-June. The tour, offered in conjunction with the Mount Marathon Race Committee and Alaska Mountain Runners, focuses on helping participants travel safely on the bottom third of the mountain.

Tour leaders guide uphill until “Squirrel’s Inn”, then travel downhill through a section of scree and navigate the creekbed. Multiple options for descending off the mountain are covered.

Anyone who is signed up for the current year’s race or interested in a future race is encouraged to participate. There is no fee but participants must sign a liability waiver.

Since it only covers part of the mountain, the tour does not satisfy Mount Marathon’s requirement that first-time racers must complete the entire course before race day.

If the tour is available during the current year, a notice will be posted to this website by early June.