Yellowstone Half Marathon & 5K
Yellowstone Half Marathon & 5K
June 9-10, 2023 | west Yellowstone, MT
June 9-10, 2023 | West yellowstone, MT
A stunning trail race with views of the Gallatin National Forest. You'll climb into the forest, where you may spot local wildlife that call this area home!
Expo & Bib Pickup
Travel to West Yellowstone, MT
Flying (all have car rental agencies on site)
Yellowstone Airport (WYS) - Local
Bozeman Yellowstone Airport (BZN) - 2hr drive
Idaho Falls (IDA) - 2hr drive
Plug in the following expo & race location to meet us for race weekend!
All events are located at the lot along Old Airport Road. This is accessed via Iris Street in West Yellowstone.
We recommend staying here in West Yellowstone. Check out Destination Yellowstone for local options! Plus, here are a few more options for your stay:
Booking.com Hotel Options
We've partnered with Booking.com to search for the best hotel options in the area.
Outdoorsy RV Rental
Rent an RV, motorhome, trailer, or campervan from Outdoorsy for your next adventure.
Yellowstone National Park
We realize that the races in this series are out of the way for most runners. 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!
Good Trip Adventures
Inclusive & eco-conscious tours through US National Parks.
Good Trip Adventures goes beyond the guide books to give you an adventure travel experience you can’t get anywhere else. With our experienced guides, you’ll emerge from our trips with expert knowledge, new connections, and a smile so big it’ll hurt your face.
Whether you’re looking to meet other travelers on a small-group day hike, want to connect with your family on a private day tour, or experience a multi-day excursion, we have the trip and the guide for your needs!
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 Yellowstone.
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 Yellowstone 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!
Our Explorer Club scavenger hunts can be found in the Neocaching App (iOS & Android). Discover your activities there and log them to earn a Grand Teton Explorer Club badge!
Recommended Hikes & Activities
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.
Start off this hike at Dunraven Pass for some of the best views in Yellowstone!
You’ll have a bird’s-eye view of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, the Hayden Valley, and the Grand Tetons farther to the south. The trail has several switchbacks, offering different and unique views.
The hike to Osprey Falls starts 5 miles south of Mammoth on the Old Bunsen Peak Road Trail and is 8 miles round trip to reac this stunning cascade.
NOTE: This is a steep, narrow climb (but worth it!) Plan to start early in the day and pack way more water than you think you need due to the dry climate.
Artist Point is just a short wallk off of south rim drive, and offers very popular and iconic views of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and Lower Falls.
Watch Old Faithful
Old Faithful is the most famous and celebrated geyser in the world. The 1870 Washburn Expedition camped near Old Faithful and discovered the geyser had frequent and regular eruptions over 100 feet. They dubbed the geyser Old Faithful.
It erupts once approximately every 45 to 90 minutes, depending on the duration of the previous eruption. Schedules for predicted eruptions are posted in the NPS buildings near Old Faithful.
Spot Bison in the Park!
You can’t leave Yellowstone without seeing bison! Yellowstone is the only place in the U.S. where bison have lived continuously since prehistoric times.
While you might be able to find bison in any area of Yellowstone, check out Lamar Valley for a variety of wildlife viewing! Lamar Valley is a wide, expansive valley in sort of a remote north-eastern corner of the park. Take your picture with a bison... but do not approach the animals!
Register to run at Yellowstone
Late registration has begun - registrations may not be refunded, but you can defer or transfer into another race.
Don't want to miss the next race? Sign up for email updates and get notified about upcoming price jumps, etc.
Yellowstone Half Marathon Bibs |$159
Register today! Late registration has begun.
Yellowstone 5K Bibs | $57
Register today! Late registration has begun.
Ready to Get Involved?
Sign up for a volunteer shift to support runners and earn a $50/$100 race credit!
Get to Know Your Half Marathon Course
Maps & Elevation
Yellowstone Course Mile-by-mile!
- The first three miles will be a loop, partially through town, and partially on trail just outside of town.
- Miles 3-4 are pretty flat and straight as you head towards the hills.
- At mile 5 is where it really starts to get pretty, and challenging. You run over a beautiful bridge that crosses the South Fork Madison River and really start to enter the forest.
- Mile 6 is the most challenging section. You will start running uphill and in the 6th mile you will gain about 200 feet in elevation. Thick forest on either side. If you have to use bear spray it will be in this section (just kidding, but not really). You then start to flatten out and then enter a downhill.
- The course gets more technical around mile 7 with some rocks and a less defined path. The course will be clearly marked, but those in the front will feel like you are running through some weeds.
- Mile 8 is real fast down hill. Continues to be technical and weedy.
- Mile 9-10 is downhill for bit an then starts to flatten out a bit as you enter some really beautiful area.
- At mile 11 there is a slight hill that will feel big if you are not ready for it. Its only a 40-50 foot gain, but it's later in the race.
- Mile 12 to the finish will be slightly downhill or flat.
This course is on a technically difficult dirt trail - expect loose rocks and uneven ground! We recommend training on trail before the event.
We recommend wearing trail shoes for this event. They will provide better support and protection on rough terrain.
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.
Interested in running a Double or Quad by combining the half marathon with other races? Click here!
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 volunteers help runners at the race expo, finish line, merchandise tent, and beyond! Join us for a 3-4hr shift and earn a $50 or $100 credit towards a future race (credits can be gifted!)
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.
Yellowstone Race Logistics
Come here to prepare for your race!
Bib Pickup Options
You have a couple of options for picking up your bib and race packet including at the race expo or we can mail it to you. When you register, we ask you to indicate when you plan to pick up your bib. If you plans change, don’t worry about it. We only ask to help us plan in terms of numbers.
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 will have limited race morning packet pickup near the start line. We do not recommend waiting until the morning, but if it cannot be avoided - we understand.
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.
Location: Old Airport Road lot (off Iris Street)
Date: Friday, June 9th
Hours: TBD morning to afternoon
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 have a variety of swag from shirts and tanks to our favorite Hydro Flasks and everything in-between.
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 6:30 am (MT) sharp at the Old Airport Road lot! We do not start our races late so please get to the start line early. Runners will have 4 hours to finish the race. That is a 18 minute mile- plenty of time for walkers!
Friday (June 9)
TBD - Race expo & bib pickup opens
TBD - Race expo closes
*Bib pickup will be available until the 5K start
5:15 pm - 5K runners must be parked
5:45 pm - 5K runners line up
6:00 pm - 5K starts!
6:45 pm - 5K Awards Ceremony
Saturday (June 10)
4:30 am - Parking lot opens
4:45 am - Bib pickup opens near the start line
5:45 am - All cars should be parked
6:15 am - Runners line up & last call for gear check
6:25 am - National Anthem
6:30 am - Yellowstone Half Marathon starts!
9:15 am - Awards Ceremony (near the finish line)
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: Opens at 4:30 am
Location: Old Airport Road Lot off Iris Street in West Yellowstone
We will have plenty of parking to accommodate all of our runners, but please arrive early to avoid congestion. Most hotels are a short walk from the start line if you are staying in town and feel like walking.
Camping is not allowed in the parking lot.
If you are dropping a runner off, please enter the parking area and drop your runner off just past the parking lot exit. This will allow cars parking to enter the parking area and avoid any traffic jams from runners being dropped off.
We welcome spectators at the Yellowstone Half Marathon!
You may park at Old Airport Road along with the runners and meet your runner at the finish line. 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!
We recommend downloading the RaceJoy app to track your runner's progress and send them cheers along the way. Spend your morning in town and head to the finish line when they're close!
Date: Friday, June 9th
Start Time: 6:00 pm (MT)
Location: Old Airport Road lot (off of Iris Street)
This is a beautiful course to give you a chance to work your legs out and enjoy a run with friends and family. The race begins from the expo location on Old Airport Rd with the first mile running through town. Runners will then jump onto the forest service roads and run through the woods before returning to the finish line.
Stroller Friendly? No
Disability Friendly? No
There will be one aid station on the course near the half way point (mile 1.5). The aid station will have water, Gnarly, and bathrooms. Like the half marathon, this race will be cupless!
5K runners can pick up their bibs at the race expo until just before the start of the race. Please plan to come early to avoid a last minute rush.
What are the Doubles & Quad?
During the month of June we host four races on back-to-back weekends:
Weekend 1: Grand Teton Half Marathon + Grand Teton 5K (June 2-3, 2023)
Weekend 2: Yellowstone Half Marathon + Yellowstone 5K (June 9-10, 2023)
These races showcase the incredible beauty of Wyoming and Montana AND they are driving distance to each other! To give our runners an extra challenge (and an opportunity to keep exploring the parks), we've created a series of combination events. Our intrepid Double and Quad runners commit to running either a 5K + Half Marathon, 2 Half Marathons, or all 4 races in the span of one week!
Yellowstone Half Marathon
Two races, one weekend! You'll run both Yellowstone races within the span of 24 hours. Pretty hard, core right?
Check in before the 5K and use this bib for both races.
With a Bison Double registration, you'll earn:
Grand Teton Half Marathon
Yellowstone Half Marathon
Two half marathons, two Saturdays, and one week of exploring in some of the most incredible places in the United States!
Check in at Grand Teton and use this bib for both races.
With a Grizzly Double registration, you'll earn:
Grand Teton 5K
Grand Teton Half Marathon
Yellowstone Half Marathon
We initially thought this would be too intense, but for you champions - the demand was there! You'll run four races over two weekends, with tons of time for hiking the National Parks in-between. We're pretty sure this one of the most hardcore vacations we can imagine!
Check in at Grand Teton and use this bib for all four races.
With a Grand Quad registration, you'll earn:
Double & Quad Registration
You MUST register for your specific Double or Quad, not separate races.
If you register for the races separately, you will need to upgrade into the correct Double/Quad in order to receive special swag and medals.
Need to upgrade to a Double or Quad?
This is considered an event transfer. You can transfer into a Double or Quad via your account on Run Signup.
*if you deferred or transferred into this race your race credit will appear as $0. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll complete the upgrade for you!
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 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 email@example.com.
You can view race results from past races below:
2020 Yellowstone Half Virtual Results | Virtual 5K Results
2018 Yellowstone Half Results | 5K Results
2017 Yellowstone Half Results | 5K Results
2016 Yellowstone Half Results | 5K Results
Half Marathon Photos
Half marathon 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. Currently, we do not offer race photos for the 5K.
Past races are available via the link, with the exception of our 2016 & 2017 races. They can be accessed for a fee.
Share your experiences with us!
Be sure to use #YellowstoneHalf in any photos you post from the race or your adventures exploring the park so we can share in the fun with you!
Exclusive Yellowstone 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.