#rainierhalf

Mount Rainier

Half Marathon& 5K

Mount Rainier Half & 5K

JULY 14-15, 2023 |  ASHFORD, WA

JULY 14-15, 2O23 |  ashford, wa

  • Quick Info

  • Travel & Lodging

  • Explore The Park

  • Register Here

Event Summary

This is a seriously scenic course with gorgeous views of Mt. Rainier as you pass over rivers and through meadows on a mix of pavement, gravel, and trails. Plus, you might catch a glimpse of a friendly Sasquatch on your way to the finish line!

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Expo & Bib Pickup

  • July 14, 2023
  • 11:00 am - 6:00 pm (PT)
  • Ashford County Park (Ashford, WA)
  • Race morning bib pickup is also available at the start line

5K Race

Half Marathon

Quick Info
  • Seattle/Tacoma Airport (SEA) and additional options
  • 73° / 45°F
  • Pavement, dirt trail, and gravel
  • No wheelchairs or strollers
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Race Raves: 4.6/5

Read more reviews from runners like you!

Get to Know Your Half Marathon Course

  • Loop Mixed Terrain
  • Incline course
  • Elevation Gain: 1,048 ft.
  • Max Elevation: 2,229 ft.

Maps & Elevation

Satellite map of the Mount Rainier half marathon course through Ashford, Washington
Elevation profile for the Mt Rainier Half Marathon showing a max elevation of 2,229
Course Description

Run through the peaceful community of Ashford, Washington at the entrance to Mount Rainier National Park. This course will take you through beautiful pacific northwest landscapes. You’ll run through peaceful forests, among wildflowers, ferns and lush undergrowth, over streams and rivers all the while catching glimpses of Mount Rainier as the trees part to reveal her in all her majesty towering over the course.

The first mile has runners heading west with Rainier at their back on Hwy 706 (National Park Hwy). This section is on road. Shortly after Mile 1, runners turn onto a dirt trail through some private property to tie into some dirt roads through the trees. Runners will be on dirt roads until just past Mile 8. Around Mile 3 runners will cross Nisqually River for the first time and hit the first aid station.

Runners will continue south on the dirt roads, hitting the first of two good climbs near Mile 4. The second aid station will be near Mile 5. At about Mile 6 runners will hit the second (and more significant of the two) hills, climbing around 300ft in a mile (it gets steeper at about 6.5). It can be harder going up a mountain than down, but the views are better at the top. From about mile 7 to 8 is a pretty good downhill, then the course is pretty level from there to the finish. The third aid station will be waiting for you at the top of the hill near Mile 7.

The course will change from dirt road back to pavement just past Mile 8. Runners will hit the fourth aid station just before crossing the Nisqually River for the second time near Mile 9. The course hops back onto Hwy 706 briefly before taking some side roads up to Ashford County Park where the finish line is.

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Mixed Terrain - Dirt, Pavement, and Gravel

This course starts and finished on a paved road. The remaining 7 miles are on dirt trails with some gravel.

Yellowstone 2021 4

Trail Shoes

We recommend wearing trail shoes for this event. They will provide better support and protection as you climb the dirt trail.

Aid Stations (Bring your own cup!)

image of a blue foldable cup with the Nathan brand name on it

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.

Additional Details

Time Limit

All runners will have 4 hours to finish the race (chip time). That is an 18 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.

Interested in running a Double by combining the half marathon and 5K? Click here!

GET INVOLVED

Wander Project Final Logo color

Support Our

Park Communities

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.

Learn more about Wander Project >>

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.

Submit your interest early and we'll let you know the specific times and roles that are available before the 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

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.

Mount Rainer Race Logistics

Everything you need to know to plan your race weekend!

Race Expo & Bib Pickup

Bib Pickup Options

You have a couple of options for picking up your bib and race packet including at the Race Expo, the start line, or we can mail it to you. 

Option #1: Race Expo
Always the Friday before our race, the expo is the best option for bib pickup. We’ll have our merchandise table set up, so be sure to stop by and say hi!

Option #2: Race Morning (not recommended)
We will have limited race morning bib and packet pickup on race morning at the start line. Get there early!

Option #3: Shipped Before the Race ($30)
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.

Race Expo

All of our events are cup-free and bag-free to help us reduce waste! Please plan to bring a reusable hydration source or request a free reusable cup at registration. 

Date: Friday, July 14th, 2023

Start Time: 11:00am - 6:00pm

Location: Ashford County Park (Ashford, WA)


We encourage you to attend the race expo! This is your chance to see the area, pick up your bib packet, and check out merchandise. We'll have a variety of swag from shirts and tanks to our favorite Hydro Flasks and everything in-between.

Rainier expo map
Race Day Schedule 

Expo & Race Schedule

All times listed are in Pacific Time.

Please note: Expo & parking lot hours are approximate and subject to shift once we are closer to the race. A final schedule is typically established 1-2 months before the event date.

FRIDAY, JULY 14

11:00 AM - Race expo & bib pickup begins
6:00 PM - Race expo & bib pickup ends

6:45 PM - 5K Runners line up

7:00 PM - 5K RACE START

7:45 PM - 5K Awards Ceremony

SATURDAY, JULY 15

4:00 AM - Parking lots open
4:15 AM - Start line bib pick-up opens

5:45 AM - Last call for gear check & runners line up
5:50 AM - National Anthem

6:00 AM - OFFICIAL START 

9:00 AM - Awards ceremony

10:00 AM* - Race cut-off time

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)!

*All half marathon runners are given 4 hours to reach the finish line. To help avoid congestion at that start, we sometimes have a rolling start. This means the cut-off time begins when the last runners start their race.

Parking & Drop-off

Runner Parking

Opens at 4:00 am

Start line lot on Natl Park Hwy

(29805 WA-706 Ashford, WA) 

*The start line & parking are walking distance to the finish line

Rainier Start Line

Runner Drop-off & Spectator Parking

Drop-off and spectator parking are both located across the street inside the entrance to Ashford County Park. Please enter, loop through the park, and follow signs for our designated drop-off and parking areas.

Rainier Finish Line

We plan to expand our parking options for this event. Check back one month before the 2023 Mount Rainier race weekend for a final parking map.

VR Campground

The most convenient (and fun) place to stay during race weekend is our Vacation Races Campground! It is located right by our race and expo site in Ashford, WA so you can sleep in and walk to the start line on race morning.

You can sleep in your car, bring a tent, hammock, RV, or rent a tent from us for an additional fee. Whichever you choose, you still have to reserve a spot.

There is plenty of space for campers but keep in mind, this is primitive camping and will be treated like a large group site. You will have neighbors and make new friends.

Reservation Info

  • Includes space for 1 vehicle + 1 tent
  • Check-in: begins Thursday at 3:00 pm
  • Check-out: Sunday at 9:00 am*
  • Ashford, WA (across from Ashford Lodge on Hwy 706)

*Your tent must be packed up and returned by

9:00 am on Sunday! This is a strict check-out time.

Campsite Details

  • Tents, hammocks, cars & campers welcome.
  • RVs welcome (no hookups, 26ft max)
  • Tent rentals available for additional fee*
  • Toilets on-site (port-a-potties only)
  • Potable water station on-site
  • Pets welcome
  • NO showers on-site
  • NOT provided: cots, sleeping bags, pillows, headlamps, cooking stoves, etc. 

*Damage due to neglect and failure to return your tent at check-out may result in an invoice to cover repairs or replacement.

Campground Pricing

Reservation Type

Flat Rates

Campsite Only (bring your own tent)

$50

Campsite + 4-person Tent Rental

$100

Campsite + 6-person Tent Rental

$130

Reserve Your Campsite

You can reserve your spot during registration:

Already registered? you can add on a campsite by modifying your registration via RunSignup.com

Spectators

Spectators are welcome at the Mount Rainier Half Marathon! Please stick to the parking area designated for you on race morning. You will be located walking distance to both the start and finish line. 


Some Spectator Etiquette:

- Only park in designated areas

- Please do not eat the runners' food or beverage

- Please remain outside of the runner recovery area (finish line) while waiting for your runner

- Give our runners your best cheers as they cross the finish line! They deserve it!

Mount Rainier 5K
Mount Rainier 5k 2022

Mount Rainier 5K

Date: Friday, July 14th, 2023

Start Time: 7:00 PM

Location: Ashford County Park (Ashford, WA)

The Course

Paved Road

Stroller friendly? Yes

Disability friendly? Yes

Course Description
The course will start and finish at the Ashford County Park. Runners will begin by turning left onto hwy 706 (National Park Hwy). Runners will be running in the shoulder against traffic for the first 1.5 miles. The course will then take a left at the Paradise Villiage Hotel & Restaurant. Runners will cross through the property before making another left onto Mt Tahoma Canyon Rd. The course will then run along Mt Tahoma Canyon Rd for the next mile.

Around mile 2.5 runners will take a right back onto hwy 706 (National Park Hwy). The course will continue in the shoulder of the hwy (running with traffic) and take a right at Ashford County Park and continue to the finish line.

Aid Station
There will be one aid station on the course near the half way point (mile 1.5). The aid station will have water, Gnarly Hydrate, and bathrooms. Like the half marathon, this race will be cupless!

Bib Pickup
5K runners can pick up their bibs at the race expo before the race. Please plan to come early to avoid a last minute rush. 

Rainier 5K course map

Click for an interactive map

Rainier 5K elevation
Sasquatch Double

What is the Sasquatch Double?

Up for an extra challenge? Try the Sasquatch Double! Run the 5K on Friday evening and the half marathon on Saturday morning and earn extra swag! You'll use the same bib for both events.

When: July 14-15, 2023
Where: Ashford, WA

Sasquatch Double

Races:

Mount Rainier 5K

Mount Rainier Half Marathon

Two races, one weekend! You'll run both Mt. Rainier races within the span of 24 hours. Pretty hard, core right?

With a Sasquatch Double registration, you'll earn: 

  • One standard race shirt for Mount Rainier
  • ONE special Sasquatch Double swag item - during registration, you’ll choose between a hat, pint glass, campers mug, t-shirt, tank top, or beach hoodie and you’ll pick it up at the race expo. Additional items can be purchased at the end of the second race.
  • Two finisher medals - one for each race
  • One Sasquatch Double medal

Check in before the 5K and use this bib for both races.

Registration & Upgrades

You MUST register for your specific Double not separate races. 


If you register for the races separately, you will need to upgrade into the correct Double in order to receive special swag and medals.

Need to upgrade to a Double?


This is considered an event transfer. You can transfer into a Double via your account on Run Signup.


*if you deferred or transferred into this race your race credit will appear as $0. Contact us at info@vacationraces.com and we'll complete the upgrade for you!

Zero Waste

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:

CUP-FREE RACING

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.

image of the foldable Nathan cup next to a person folding the cup into their waistbag

Stay hydrated on course with a reusable cup!

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:

  • Compostables: Organic goods like banana peels and most food items (without the wrapper please!)
  • Recyclables: Paper, aluminum, cardboard, steel, and glass. Please dump out any liquids into the compost bin BEFORE recycling the container.
  • Everything Else: Non-recyclable food wrappers like from used gel packets and styrofoam. Please dump out any food matter BEFORE throwing away the container.

Please avoid putting organic waste and compostable items in the wrong bin. It gets gross to sort through.

Race Results and Photos

Past Results

You'll be able to view your time ~20 minute after you finish by going to RunSignup.com or heading to the Race Results tent and scanning a QR code. 

If you see that you placed, but didn't stick around for the awards ceremony, no worries! You can request to have your place medal shipped to you!

If you have questions about your placement or results, please email timing@runsum.com.

Photos

Half Marathon Race Photos
Race photos are typically available for the Half Marathon on RunSignup.com the Friday following the week of the race. We will send out an email when they're posted to the album as well as place the link below. Currently, we do not offer race photos for the 5K.

Share your experiences with us! 
Be sure to use #RainierHalf in any photos you post from the race or your adventures exploring the park so we can share in the fun with you!

Race Merchandise

Exclusive Mount Rainier Half 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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