“Welcome to the 8th running of the Blue Sky Marathon, Fort Collins
— Tom Robson
Race - Oct 1, 2017
The Blue Sky
Marathon is a deceptively challenging course and a thoroughly honest test. Back by popular demand, we maintained the short Herrington Trail
and Carey Springs Trail
reroute near the top of the Towers
climb, and will continue to do so for all future runnings of the race.
- 5:30am-6:30am: Marathon check-in at the Blue Sky Trailhead. You MUST check in to receive your bib number to be officially entered into the race.
- 6:45am: Marathon pre-race briefing at the Start/Finish line.
- 7:00am: Marathon start!
- 1:30pm: Marathon Awards and Raffle
Much of the course is run on trails that are not easily accessible to spectators.
The best viewing points will be the Start/Finish line at the Blue Sky
Trailhead, the Soderberg Trailhead, and the Hunter Loop
- For the Start/Finish, park in the marina parking area (see above) and walk over, please DO NOT drive through or park at the Start/Finish.
- To access the Soderberg Trailhead, continue North on Shoreline drive and make a left into the trailhead parking lot. If the parking lot is full, you may park in the marina parking area and walk north through the campground to the trailhead.
- To access the Hunter loop (turn around), drive to the Devils Backbone parking lot near Loveland. Take Highway 34 West from Loveland and take a right onto Hidden Valley Rd and follow signs to the Devils Backbone parking lot. Follow the trail North up the hill to the junction of the Wild and Hunter loops.
While the entire trail system is open to the public, due to the high volume of traffic on the course we ask that friends and family refrain from hiking or biking further onto the course. Crewing and pacing by foot or by bike is not allowed and will result in the disqualification of your runner.
Fall Colors — Lake — River/Creek — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
The Start/Finish line is located at the Blue Sky
trailhead off of 38E across from the Canyon Bar & Grill.
We will have limited parking at the Blue Sky
trailhead for full carpools on a first-come first-serve basis. Parking for all other participants and spectators will be located in the marina parking lot off of Shoreline Drive.
Race participants will not be required to pay the park day use fee.
Post Race Food
Food and beverages will be provided at the post race BBQ from 10am to 3pm at the Blue Sky
trailhead finish area.
Marathon Cut Off Times
- 12:30: Marathon runners must reach the Indian Summer South aid station outbound (Mile 15.6)
- 1:30pm: Marathon runners must reach the Indian Summer South aid station inbound (Mile 20.3)
- 4:00pm: Finish Line Cut Off.
Runners may leave a drop bag at the Blue Sky
Start/Finish to pick up at mile 9.2. We will have a tarp to set bags out next to the aid table. Pack your gear to stay dry in case we get any rain.
Finish line bags can be left at check-in and will be stored in our gear trailer. These bags will not be accessible until after the race but will remain dry. Please make sure that any clothing that you leave is bagged and labeled with your name so that you can retrieve it at the finish.
Taking place on the trails between Horsetooth Mountain Park and the Devils Backbone Open Space, the course takes you on a north-south tour of the easternmost hogbacks of Northern Colorados mighty Front Range. With 3,500 feet of elevation gain and an equal amount of elevation loss, the route offers a little bit of something for everyone. It is designed to appeal to both veteran trail runners and those looking to experience their first trail racing adventure. The generous nine-hour cut-off should ensure a successful day for everyone.
The course is 100% dirt and 90% sweet Colorado singletrack. The terrain ranges in difficulty from smooth dirt trail to technical rock gardens. A small portion of the route is on smooth dirt road (no motor vehicle access) and gravel bike path, with the meat of the running done on the beautiful and distinctive red stone hardpack of the Blue Sky
After the race, kick back and enjoy the always-popular barbeque and generous sponsor giveaways.