Glacier Half Marathon
Glacier Half Marathon
June 24, 2023 | East Glacier, MT
June 24, 2023 | East Glacier, MT
Come run this challenging but epically rewarding point-to-point half marathon with some seriously stunning views!
The course runs along the Eastern border of Glacier National Park. You'll climb for the first 5 miles and then it's all downhill from there. Along the way, you'll be rewarded with incredible views of Glacier National Park and the prairies at its base as you climb Looking Glass Hill. You'll gaze at Two Medicine Lake during miles 5-8 and you'll finish on the front lawn of the beautiful and historic Glacier Park Lodge.
Expo & Bib Pickup
Travel to East Glacier, MT
Don't get lost - download your maps in advance!
This event is hosted primarily in East Glacier, Montana, right on the border of the National Park. Phone signal may be difficult to find here. Plan ahead and download a google map of the area before arriving in town. This way, you can enjoy the area and still navigate to our race expo and race morning parking with confidence.
Glacier Park Int'l Airport (FCA) - 90min drive
We will have our campsite open to runners at Red Eagle Campground! This is primitive camping, but it is also convenient as it is the same location as our race expo & bib pickup.
Reserve a spot via RunSignup when you sign up for the race.
The areas surrounding Glacier National Park are remote and things book quickly. We recommend booking all travel accommodations early - even before you register for the race!
EAST GLACIER VILLAGE - East Glacier Village has the most lodging options in the area. It will be the easiest to place to find lodging for race weekend.
While the finish line is located in East Glacier Village, you will still need to drive to shuttle parking in Browning in the AM...and pick up your car in Browning via shuttle afterwards!
BROWNING - If you can’t find lodging in East Glacier Village, Browning will be the next town to look in.
This is where race morning parking & shuttle pickup is located.We will have shuttles between here and the finish line for runners & spectators.
ST. MARY - This is small town north of the race, but it has some good lodging options.
You should plan on about a 45 minute drive + shuttle rides to and from the race if you stay here.
Booking.com Hotel Options
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Outdoorsy RV Rental
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Glacier National Park
We realize that the races in this series are out of the way for most runners, and it may be the only time that you visit these breathtaking areas. One of our biggest desires is that you walk away from this event having fully experienced what the region has to offer.
While in the area we encourage you to continue the adventure and spend time in the parks!
* The NPS has a ticketed entry system for access to Going-to-the-Sun Road between 6am-5pm! Please plan accordingly. Many activities are on this road, but you can still enjoy splendid hikes and vistas in other areas of the park. Or, consider sunset hikes after 5pm!
If you've run any of our National Park half marathons before, you may be familiar with our "club hikes" and "trifecta" programs. The "Explorer Club" series is our new iteration of this idea! We want you to have as broad or as deep of an experience of our National Parks and their surrounding areas as possible. We have created a scavenger hunt made up of all kinds of adventures and experiences you can have here at Glacier.
The challenge consists of activities that fit into 6 categories: History, Hiking, Explore, Food/Dining, Education, and Stewardship.
Each activity is worth points towards a Glacier Explorer badge! They are worth a different number of points based on difficulty and you can choose which to tackle based on your interests. Whether you have an afternoon or a week at the park, you should be able to plan an amazing itinerary with these suggestions!
Start Exploring With The Neocaching App!
1. Get Started
Download the app and join the correct Explorer Club for your park.
2. Choose Your Own Adventure
Use our curated list of local hikes and activities to create an unforgettable weekend. Then - get out there and explore!
3. Log Your Activities
Log enough activities to earn 1500pts within 7 days of your VR race to become an official Explorer Club member (and receive a special badge!)
Note: You are responsible for your safety if you attempt to participate in any of these activities. Always check the weather before starting a hike, and speak with a park or forest ranger for updated information regarding trail conditions, closures, and permits.
A strenuous, but very rewarding hike to Grinnell Glacier Overlook. It’s 7.6 miles roundtrip and scenic the whole way! We recommend taking the shuttle boats across Swiftcurrent Lake and Lake Josephine (which do have fees), otherwise you’ll need to hike an extra 3.4 miles. We also recommend starting early and bringing bear spray and lots of water!
A moderate, 5.4 mile hike (roundtrip). You’ll get gorgeous views of the lake, plus alpine meadows on the way!
Trail of the Cedars
A short, 1 mile loop through the forest in Glacier National Park. Located 5.5 miles east of the Lake McDonald Lodge. This is an extremely popular trailhead, so parking can become sparse at times. The humidity in the area allows for tall cedars and even some ferns, which you’d normally only see on the Pacific Coast. You’ll get some really pretty views of the forest and the Lower Avalanche Gorge.
Two Medicine Lakess
Not accessed by Going-to-the-Sun Road!
The three lakes that make up this area hosted a variety of shorter hikes and summit climbs with beautiful vistas over the lakes themselves.
Many Glacier (east side)
Not accessed by Going-to-the-Sun Road!
Rte 3 brings you past Shelbourne Lake and a lovely stretch of hikes that spread out at the base of several peaks. Hikes in this area are surrounded by impressive peaks and calm blue lakes.
Running Eagle Falls
Not accessed by Going-to-the-Sun Road!
The trailhead for the falls is located 1.1 miles west of the Two Medicine entrance station. Running Eagle Falls, also known as “Trick Falls”, flows off the outlet stream between Two Medicine Lake and Lower Two Medicine Lake.
Register to run at Glacier National Park
Glacier Half Marathon Bibs | $159
The late registration period has begun. Refunds are not available, but you may defer or transfer your bib anytime leading up to the race.
Ready to Get Involved?
Sign up for a volunteer shift to support runners and earn a $50/$100 race credit!
Don't miss a price jump!
Sign up for email updates and get notified about upcoming price jumps and important news.
Get to Know Your Half Marathon Course
Maps & Elevation
Elevation Note: This is a challenging course! The course includes a 5-mile stretch of steady incline that begins above 5,000ft. Please train with this in mind.
The race will start about 1.3 miles east of Kiowa, MT on highway 89.
The entire race will be on pavement except for a couple short sections that run on grass. At Kiowa, the road climbs almost 900 ft. It’s a big climb, but runners will be rewarded with gorgeous views of Glacier National Park, and the prairies at its base as you climb Looking Glass Hill. From mile 5 to mile 10, the course runs downhill while enjoying stunning views of Lower Two Medicine Lake. The last portion has a series of hill-climbs and drops where runners will finish on the front lawn of the Glacier Park Lodge.
The course will be well-marked, but it is your responsibility to stay to the left when running with traffic and be courteous and mindful of cars and other runners. DO NOT step off the course into traffic; you will be disqualified. We want you to stay safe.
All runners will have 4 hours to finish the race. That is an 18.5 minute mile - plenty of time for walkers! If at anytime we deem it unsafe and need to pull a runner off the course we would hope for understanding and immediate cooperation. Failure to comply will result in being banned from future events.
To be clear, this race doesn't take place inside the National Park. It's difficult to get permission to conduct private business activities on national land, and rightly so.) Having said that, this is about as close to the park as it gets.
Aid Stations (Bring your own cup!)
All aid stations are cup-free so remember to bring your own hydration solution or request a FREE Nathan reusable cup when you register.
Expect about 6 aid stations on the course near mile 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, and 12 (Exact locations vary). A medic will be stationed typically at the aid station at or near mile 9. Aid stations include toilets, water, Gnarly Hydrate, Honey Stinger gels, basic first aid supplies, and sometimes more. Cups are not provided on course to help reduce waste.
Fundraise for your chosen race and your registration fee could be waived. All funds go to Wander Project to support efforts in and around the communities that host our events.
New this year, YOU choose whether the funds you raise support a WP community partner or an organization that matters to you!
Volunteer with Us!
Our amazing volunteers help runners at the race expo, finish line, merch tent, and beyond! Join us for a 3-4hr shift and earn a $50 or $100 credit towards a future race.
Pro-tip: Volunteer at the expo and run the next day OR ask a friend to volunteer and "gift" you the credit (or use it themselves!)
HOW TO PREPARE
Train with Active at Altitude
FREE custom Training Plan for each event!
No matter what your skill level, when you're pushing your limits it's nice to have a little guidance! We're excited to offer FREE training programs for all levels.
Know Your Guidelines
- Read your race details! Following event rules helps us to put on safe, sustainable events.
- We are a zero-waste event. Please stick to reusable water bottles and avoid bringing disposable items to the race.
- Be courteous towards fellow runners on and off the course.
Join the Community
Vacation Races is honored to have a community of runners who actively support one another! We highly recommend joining one our Facebook groups to get input from other runners, share stories, and learn about the latest updates.
Glacier Half Logistics
Come here to prepare for your race weekend!
Bib Pickup Options
Choose your bib pickup option during race registration! If your plans change - don't worry.
Option #1: Race Expo (recommended)
Race expos are held the Friday before the race. They typically run 5-7 hours, allowing you to get your bib at your convenience.
Option #2: Race Morning (not recommended)
We do not recommend waiting to pick up your bib until race morning, but understand that it may be unavoidable.
Race morning bib pickup is located at the start line after your shuttle ride.
Option #3: Shipped Before the Race
There is a cost of $30 if you want to have your bib and shirt mailed to you. We do this as a convenience for runners not wanting to drive to the area early. You can add a shipped bib to your registration until one month before the race by logging into RunSignup, clicking Manage Registration, and Add Ons.
Refunds: Once your package is shipped, you are officially checked in to the race and no longer qualify for our refund, deferment, or transfer options.
Bib Pickup/Race Expo
Date: June 23, 2023
Location: Red Eagle Campground (North of East Glacier Park, MT)
Expo Hours: 12:00-6:00pm
Expo Hours: 12:00-7:00pm
This is a great opportunity to pick up your bib, check out the area, and meet fellow runners. We’ll have our merchandise table set up, so be sure to stop by and say hi! We'll have a variety of swag from race shirts to our favorite Hydro Flasks and everything in-between.
Need to pick up your bib on race morning? Ride the shuttle to the start line and look for the bib pick-up tent!
Bring Your Own Bag
In our ongoing effort to eliminate waste during our races, our expos are bagless events. We encourage you to BYOB (bring your own bag) to hold your bib, race shirt, and any goodies you pick up from the race expo!
The race starts at 6:00 am (MST) sharp. We do not start our races late so please plan enough time to park at Charging Home Stampede Park in Browning, MT and grab a shuttle to the start line.
12:00 PM - Race expo & bib pickup begin at Red Eagle Campground.
4:00 PM - Native Presentation
6:00 PM - Race expo ends
7:00 PM - Bib pickup closes
Saturday (Race Day)
4:00 AM - Runner parking and start line shuttles open at Charging Home Stampede Park.
4:15 AM - Raffles begin near the start
4:30 AM - Bib pickup opens at the start line
5:00 AM - Last start line shuttle leaves!
5:30 AM - Start line bib pickup closes
5:40 AM - Runners line up & last call for gear check
5:45 AM - National Anthem, Blackfeet Honor Song, and Blackfeet Victory Song
6:00 AM - HALF MARATHON BEGINS!
7:00 AM - Spectator parking & shuttles to the finish line begin from Charging Home Stampede Park.
8:45 AM - Awards Ceremony at the finish line
Morning/Afternoon - Shuttles will bring runners and spectators back to the event parking lot in Browning as needed.
Arrive early & get ready with us
We encourage runners to arrive early on race morning. Find a parking spot, grab some Summit Coffee or hot chocolate, and listen for updates from our race announcer (they're the one with the megaphone and early-bird energy)!
Parking, Shuttles, & Runner Drop-off
Parking and shuttles will be located at the Charging Home Stampede Park in Browning, MT on race morning.
Shuttles will return runners to the parking lot after the race. There is absolutely no parking or drop off at the start line or finish line.
*Note: There is no shuttle services from Glacier Park Lodge or the Vacation Races Campground (Red Eagle). Runners will need to drive/carpool to the parking lot in Browning in order to catch the shuttle to the start line.
Finish Line Staging
Shuttles will depart from the finish line at Glacier Park Lodge in East Glacier Village back to the parking lot in Browning as runners finish the race.
At the finish line we will have a food box (full of recovery snacks), bananas, and chocolate milk. Please help yourself to one food box, chocolate milk, and banana per runner. There will be water at the finish line, but no cups. Please use your reusable cup or water bottle to fill up at the finish line.
In addition to the expo, the merchandise tent will be set up after the race near the finish line!
We welcome spectators to Glacier - but please note that this is not a spectator friendly course. There is no option to cheer runners on along the course. Instead, all spectators should park with the runners in Browning, MT. Then, hop on a spectator shuttle to the finish line! These shuttles will go round-trip from 7:00am until shortly after the last runner finishes their race.
We recommend downloading the RaceJoy app to track your runner's progress and send them cheers along the way! Once your runner has crossed the finish line, please exit the runner recovery area to avoid crowding. The beverages, supplies, and medical tent at the finish line are for runner use only - thank you!
The most convenient (and most fun) place to stay during race weekend is our Vacation Races Campground! The Vacation Races campground will be located at Red Eagle Campground on the Blackfeet reservation at the south end of Lower Two Medicine Lake (off of Highway 49).
There is plenty of space for campers but keep in mind that this is primitive camping and will be treated like a large group site. You'll share fire pits with neighbors and make new friends!
Note: Runners who are camping will need to drive to the parking area in Browning to catch the shuttle to the start line race morning.
*Your tent must be packed up and returned by
9:00 am on Sunday! This is a strict check-out time.
*Damage due to neglect and failure to return your tent at check-out may result in an invoice to cover repairs or replacement.
Campsite Only (bring your own tent)
Campsite + 4-person Tent Rental
Campsite + 6-person Tent Rental
Getting to the Start Line
The campground is conveniently near the expo but it is NOT nearby the shuttle pickup for race day or the finish line. Please keep that in mind. You will need to park in Browning on race morning. From there, shuttles will bring you to the start line and back to Browning from the finish line to pick up your car.
- Parking Lot: Charging Home Stampede Park (Browning, MT)
- Shuttles from Browning lot to Start Line: 4:00 - 5:00am
- Shuttles from Finish Line to Browning lot: 7:00am until shortly after the last runner finishes
As nature lovers, we are committed to keeping our events sustainable and managing negative impacts on the environment. Our goal is to send less than one bag of actual “trash” to the landfill after each event. We have managed to meet this goal at events with over 3,000 participants!
Here's how you can help us:
Single-use plastic is a huge source of waste at any public event. We have reduced that impact by making our events "cup-free".
What does that mean for you?
Coolers of Water and Gnarly Hydrate (electrolyte drink) are available at all aid stations, but cups will not be provided on course or at the finish line. In order to stay hydrated, we ask you to bring one of the following:
1. Reusable water bottle
2. Nathan reusable cup - These light-weight cups fold into a pocket or waistband. Request one when you sign up to run!
3. Hydration pack - These are refillable backpacks meant for running that allow you to access fluid via a built-in straw.
ZERO WASTE CONTAINERS
You can help us reduce trash by sorting disposable items into the appropriate container.
You’ll notice three containers at our events:
Please avoid putting organic waste and compostable items in the wrong bin. It gets gross to sort through.
Visit RunSignup for current and past race results.
Runner times are available ~20 minutes after you finish the race. Keep in mind, the results are not official until all runners have crossed the finish line, and have been reviewed by the event director. Because our age group winners are based on chip time, it is possible to cross the finish line before someone else in your age group while still finishing with a slower time than them.
Top Finisher but missed the awards ceremony? You can request to have your place medal shipped to you!
Got questions about your placement? please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Race photos are typically available for FREE via RunSignup the Friday following the week of the race. We will send out an email when they're posted to the album. Past races are available via the link
Share your experiences with us!
Be sure to use #GlacierHalf in any photos you post from the race or your adventures exploring the park so we can share in the fun with you!
Exclusive Glacier Marathon merchandise will be available both at the race expo and near the finish line! When possible, we'll have race merch for sale in our online store after the race is over. Please allow time for us to add items online.
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