A Colorado end-of-summer outdoor celebration! Come celebrate the beginning of fall in the mountains by competing in a challenging 55K, heavy half, or full marathon in Colorado! This is an exciting day of festival fun and exploration on the trails near Eagle, Colorado. With the start/finish line right in the heart of Eagle Ranch, friends and family can enjoy themselves while you push yourself in a rugged mountain race backdropped against stunning views and gorgeous scenery. After you finish, you can relax with a beer, hot meal, live music, and more. Racers can choose between three different trail races: a Heavy Half Marathon, Full Marathon, or 55K in Colorado.
Finisher’s mementos will be handed to you as you cross the finish line and awards will be given out at our Awards Ceremony on Saturday evening (details/location TBD). Don’t miss out on a chance to win raffle prizes and socialize with other runners!
The fastest male and female racers to race from the Firebox Aid Station to the Dead Cow Aid Station will receive $100! These cash awards will be presented at the Awards Ceremony.
Men’s and Women’s overall winners of each distance (55K, Marathon, and Heavy Half) will receive comp entries to next year’s races.
Customized cowbell awards will be given to the top three male and female finishers in each race for the following age groups:
- Under 20
Racers will also receive customized dog tag finisher awards as they cross the finish line. Awards and mementos will not be mailed after the event.
September 16-17, 2023
Corner of Capitol and Sylvan Road in Eagle, CO
Same as Starting Location
Secure your spot in one of our upcoming trail races and marathons in Colorado at the Mountain RATS event! Spots are limited for this end-of-summer competition, so don’t let the opportunity pass you by. Register for either our 55K, full, or heavy half-marathon in Colorado today!
Entry fees include place winner awards, shirts (or other race mementos), aid station goodies, a finisher’s memento, and post-race refreshments.
The Mountain RATS courses will be challenging, beautiful, and almost 100% dirt. Here are the courses for our ultra-marathon, marathon, and half marathon in Colorado.
- 36.1 mi with 6400’+ of climbing
- Low Point 6613′ – High Point 9138′
- Spring Creek (14.5 miles) Cut-off – 11:40am
- School House (22.5mi) Cut-off – 2:00pm
- Finish Cut-off – 6:00pm
Racers will hit 9 aid stations throughout the course.
On this 55K in Colorado, you will start in the heart of Eagle, right next to Color Coffee Roasters. Begin by running 2 miles on the bike path along Eagle Ranch Road and Haystacker Drive, where a right turn onto the Turniphead Trail marks the start of dirt miles until the finish.
Just shy of a mile after turning onto dirt, you’ll encounter your first aid station, Arroyo, at mile 2.4. From Arroyo, the course continues steadily up, first on the double track on Third Gulch Trail, then veering left onto a singletrack on Pipeline Trail. Throughout this climb, you’ll travel from sage-covered high desert into beautiful aspen groves on the Pipeline Trail. 1300 vertical feet above Arroyo, runners reach aid station #2, Firebox, at mile 7.3.
Once you leave the second aid station, continue uphill on Hardscrabble Road briefly to a hard right turn onto Firebox Road. After 2 miles trending up through forest and pastureland on Firebox Road, veer left onto singletrack and descend to Spring Creek. The singletrack crosses the road again soon; watch closely and keep straight at this intersection. Once at Spring Creek, a left turn on Dead Cow Trail leads back uphill to aid station #3, Dead Cow, at mile 12.
A steep but short climb awaits you as you leave the aid station on Mike’s Night Out. The course rewards with sweeping views as it continues on Mike’s Night Out trail and quickly descends to aid station #4, Spring Creek, at mile 14.5. From there, turn left and begin a stretch of dirt road that again offers views northward across much of the trail system. This stretch begins with a gentle descent but soon climbs steeply over a saddle. Shortly after the saddle, leave the road with a slight right turn onto Easy Rider Trail.
Expect a bit of climbing at the start of Easy Rider Trail, which leads to a cruisy 800-foot singletrack descent over 2.5 miles ending at aid station #5, Easy Rider, at mile 18.5. Cross the road and continue on the double track that eventually merges with Star Wars Trail, a fun singletrack descent. The descent ends abruptly with a right turn onto Pole Road, where the climbing begins again in earnest. Climb straight up the exposed Pole Road to its high point then turn right onto a short section of singletrack that joins the Hockett Gulch Trail. Here, you will enjoy a smooth descent to a right turn onto School House Rock Trail. Follow this short section of rolling trail into aid station #6, School House I, at mile 22.5.
Here, 55K runners part ways with marathoners and turn uphill and right onto Elmer’s Trail. Over the next 3.7 miles, you’ll veer left onto the World’s Greatest Trail then right onto Scratch Trail, meanwhile netting 1100 feet of vertical gain (with some short, fun descents and wide-open views in the mix). The course reaches Spring Creek Aid Station for a second time at mile 26.5.
You’ll then venture onto familiar territory and follow the same route you covered already between the Spring Creek aid station and the School House Rock aid station. The course passes through aid station #8, Easy Rider II, at 30.5 miles and reaches aid station #9, School House Rock II, at 34.5 miles.
From here, the fun isn’t quite over as the course for our 55K in Colorado heads up one final 200-foot climb. From the top of this punchy climb, the trail makes a serpentine descent to the Horton Street Trailhead. Runners head down the neighborhood street and turn left onto the bike path. A short 0.4 miles along this path lead to the finish line and after party at Color Coffee Roasters.
- 324.2 miles with 4500’+ of climbing
- Low Point 6613′ – High Point 9138′
- Spring Creek (14.5 miles) Cut-off 2:30pm
- Easy Rider (18.5 miles) Cut-off 3:30pm
- Finish Cut-off 6:00pm
Marathoners will hit 6 aid stations throughout this course.
For this marathon in Colorado, racers will follow most of the same beautiful, exciting, and fun course as racers participating in our 55K. You’ll cross from the Third Gulch Trail to the Pipeline Trail, then hit Hardscrabble Rd, Firebox Rd, Spring Creek, the Dead Cow Trail, Mike’s Night Out trail, the Easy Rider trail, the Star Wars trail, the Hockett Gulch trail, and the School House Rock trail. Please refer to the course details outlined above for more information. Racers will eventually arrive at aid station #6, School House I, at mile 22.5, where marathoners will part ways with the 55K runners for the final part of their journey.
Don’t worry: the fun isn’t quite over once you leave the final aid station. The course for our Colorado marathon heads up one final 200-foot climb. From the top of this punchy incline, the trail makes a serpentine descent to the Horton Street Trailhead. Runners head down the neighborhood street and turn left onto the bike path. From there, it’s just a short 0.4 miles along this path until you reach the finish line and the after-party at Color Coffee Roasters.
- 15.4 miles with 2500’+ of climbing
- Low Point 6613′ – High Point 7942′
Runners will hit 4 aid stations throughout the half marathon. Please note that there are no cut-offs for the Heavy Half Marathon!
You’ll begin this Heavy Half Marathon in Colorado in the heart of Eagle, next to Color Coffee Roasters. This trail race begins with a short stretch on the bike path and up Horton Street, leading to a singletrack on the School House Rock Trail. Once you hit the dirt path, you’ll run a quick 200 vertical feet over 0.7 miles, followed by a similar descent to aid station #1, School House, at mile 1.7.
A hard left turn onto Elmer’s Trail marks the start of the race’s longest climb of 4 miles and 1100 net vertical feet. This mostly steady climb offers occasional breaks of short, fun descents and wide-open views. During this climb, runners veer left onto the World’s Greatest Trail and right onto the Scratch Trail. The climb tops out at aid station #2, Spring Creek, at mile 5.2.
From the 2nd aid station, runners turn right and begin a stretch of dirt road. This stretch begins with a gentle descent and soon climbs steeply over a saddle. Shortly after, runners leave the road with a slight right turn onto Easy Rider Trail.
Expect a bit of climbing at the start of Easy Rider Trail, which leads to a cruisy 800-foot singletrack descent over 2.5 miles ending at aid station #3, Easy Rider, at mile 9.7. Runners cross the road and continue on the double track that eventually merges with Star Wars Trail, a fun singletrack descent. The descent ends abruptly with a right turn onto Pole Road, where the climbing begins again in earnest. Runners climb straight up the exposed Pole Road to its high point then turn right onto a short section of singletrack that joins the Hockett Gulch Trail. On this trail, runners enjoy a smooth descent to a right turn onto School House Rock Trail. Runners follow this short section of rolling trail into aid station #4, School House II, at mile 12.7.
Runners will complete this half marathon in Colorado by heading up one final 200-foot climb. From the top of this intense climb, the trail makes a serpentine descent to the Horton Street Trailhead. Runners head down the neighborhood street and turn left onto the bike path. A short 0.4 miles along this path leads to the finish line and the after party at Color Coffee Roasters.
6:00 pm – Adam Palmer Fund Trivia Night at Color Roasters. Register here.
5:00 pm-7:00 pm – Packet Pick Up at Color Roasters breezeway (west side of Color Roasters)
5:00 pm-8:00 pm – Live music at Color Roasters
6:00 am-7:45 am – Packet Pick-Up and race day registration at the start line on Capitol St.
7:00 am – 55K Ultra and Marathon start
8:00 am – Heavy Half start
9:00 am-6:00 pm – Endorphin gym open to all registered participants. Register here.
10:30 am – Cycle Effect bike clinics on Capitol Street. Register here.
11:00 am – Kids “sprint race” on Capitol St. (10 and under). Register at the start/finish area
11:30 am – Heavy Half awards at the start/finish
12:00 pm-6:00 pm Live Music on-stage on Capitol St.
2:00 pm-4:00 pm – Amazing Race
4:00 pm – Marathon/55K Race Awards at start/finish
4:30 pm – Amazing Race Awards at start/finish
6:30 am-7:45 am – Packet Pick-up and race day registration at the start line on Capitol St.
8:00 am – Firebird 50 Mountain Bike Start
8:30 am – Firebird 25 Mountain Bike Start
9:00 am-6:00 pm – Endorphin gym open to all registered participants
10:00 am-1:00 pm – Live music on stage on Capitol St.
11:00 am – Super Strider event (4 years and under). Register at the start/finish area
12:00 pm – School House Aid Cut-Off for 50K
12:00 pm – Firebird 25K Mountain Bike Awards at start/finish
1:30 pm – Firebird 50 Mountain Bike Awards
3:00 pm – Firebird 50 Mountain Bike Final Cut-Off
55K Female – Mary Baughman – 5:41:34 (2020)
55K Male – Jeremy Scanlan – 5:20:23 (2021)
Marathon Female – Myriah Blair – 4:00:16 (2020)
Marathon Male – Ethan Kirk – 3:37:12 (2020)
Heavy Half Female – Kim Dobson – 2:02:27 (2018)
Heavy Half Male – Mike Dorr – 2:01:03 (2020)
Are There Accommodations Available?
Our host hotel for this upcoming weekend event is the Quality Inn & Suites Vail Valley. When you call to reserve, please mention that you’re participating in the “Mountain RATS races” to receive the best rate. Rooms will sell out quickly for the event weekend, so be sure to book soon.
Where Can I Park?
Parking will be at the Brush Creek Elementary School parking lot (333 Eagle Ranch Rd, Eagle, CO 81631). It’s a very short walk across the street to the start/finish area.
What Kind of Weather is Expected?
Weather in Eagle can vary. The averages for September are a low of 42F and a high of 73F degrees. So, plan accordingly!
Are Dogs Allowed?
We love dogs! Well-behaved dogs on leashes are welcome at the Start/Finish and aid stations. Unfortunately, we cannot allow dogs on course with their runners for our 55k, marathon, or half marathon in Colorado.
What is Provided at the Aid Stations?
We will have nine aid stations located throughout the 55K course, six for the marathon and four for the half (at approximately five-mile intervals). Aid stations will be stocked with gels, potato chips, peanut butter and jelly rolls, chocolate, bananas, ice water, and sports drink. Aid stations will NOT have aspirin, ibuprofen, or other NSAIDs.
In order to be environmentally friendly and cut down on the amount of trash we produce, we will not have cups at the aid stations. Please carry a water bottle, cup, or hydration pack on the course.
There will be emergency vehicles throughout the event and at aid stations, and all necessary materials to nurse any bumps, cuts, bruises, or blisters will be at the start/finish area. In addition, a certified Emergency Medical Technician will be in attendance.
Can I Go Off Course?
Racers must stay on the designated course at all times. Short-cutting will result in disqualification. If you go off course, you must return to the same point you exited in order to continue.
What About Unforeseeable Circumstances?
In the case of unforeseeable circumstances due to weather or other extenuating circumstances that prevents the safe continuation of the race, race officials may end the race at any given time without a refund of unused portions. This rule will be implemented in the most extreme cases for the safety of the runners or officials during the heavy half, ultra-marathon, and marathon in Colorado.
What is Your Refund/Cancellation Policy?
There will be no entry transfers. If you regrettably need to cancel your registration, please use UltraSignup. Cancellations will result in a credit that can be applied as a registration payment toward any Gemini Adventures event within one year’s time, minus a 15% fee. To cancel your registration, simply login to your account, go to “Registration History,” select “Edit” for the event, and select “Cancel Registration.”
- 30 days or more prior to the event: 85% credit of registration fee (excluding UltraSignup fees).
- Less than 30 days prior to the event: No refunds or credit given.
Credits may be applied to any future Gemini Adventures race and will be valid for 12 months.
Registered runners may also switch between distances. No refunds or credit will be given for dropping down in distance. If you would like to increase your distance, the added current pricing of the longer distance will be charged (excluding Ultrasignup fees).