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Mt. Marathon Race Course

Extremely Difficult
  5.0 ( 2 ) Favorite


3.2 mile 5.2 kilometer point to point
50% Runnable
Extremely Difficult


Ascent: 2,661' 811 m
Descent: -2,673' -815 m
High: 2,724' 830 m
Low: 51' 16 m


Avg Grade: 31% (17°)
Max Grade: 89% (42°)


No Dogs
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Trail shared by Josh Robinson

A very rocky, muddy, open trail that is very steep and made for one purpose: to race!

Josh Robinson

Features Views · Wildlife

Closed once it starts snowing. Would avoid during rain.


This killer course isn't one to take lightly. One of the major races held in Seward, Alaska every year, this is a tough slog to the top, followed by a fast and furious descent.

Runner Notes

This is the second oldest race in the U.S. behind the Boston Marathon. The course is run daily and the official race occurs on the 4th of July every year to first 500 adults and 100 kids who enter.


There are many local legends as to how this trail came into being. Some say that it was the result of many hours spent pondering whether the route could be completed in under an hour, others claim it was the result of a bet between two overzealous runners on who was faster.

After that first fateful footrace, a race has been hosted annually ever since. Now, the race begins downtown, at Fourth and Adams, in front of the First National Bank Alaska, and ends a block south of where it began, at Fourth and Washington. The halfway point is a stone marker atop Mount Marathon, 3022 feet (921 m) above sea level, and a mile and a half from the finish line.

The total race course distance is about 3.1 miles (5 kilometers). Leading racers will typically reach the peak from the starting line in 30 minutes, and reach the finish line from the peak in 1015 minutes for a total time between 40 minutes to an hour. It is not uncommon for the racers who finish to cross the finish line injured or bleeding and covered in mud. This is not a course to take lightly!

Flora & Fauna

Especially on race day, there is little fauna to be seen. After passing through a stunted forest, you'll encounter mostly mountain grasses and mud.

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Aug 18, 2015
Gerardo Barrios
Mt. Marathon Course Preview 2.7mi

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 2 votes


  5.0 from 2 votes
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in Alaska


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2,609 Since Nov 19, 2015
Extremely Difficult



Descending Mt. Marathon Trail in Seward, Alaska.
Feb 4, 2016 near Seward, AK
Mt. Marathon: 3022 ft.
Feb 16, 2016 near Seward, AK
Mt Marathon 2013 - Course Record.
Feb 16, 2016 near Seward, AK
Kilian Jornet interviewed after breaking Mt Marathon record in 2015.
Feb 16, 2016 near Seward, AK
Taking in the view at race point prior to heading towards the summit of Mt. Marathon
Nov 6, 2017 near Seward, AK
Emelie Forsberg breaks CR - Mt. Marathon 2015.
Feb 16, 2016 near Seward, AK

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