Mountain West Region
Coal Creek XC Challenge
Oct. 13, Louisville, Colo.
Touted as a European-style cross-country race that will take you back to your high school race days or give those never-ever cross-country runners a taste of this classic form of competition, the annual 5.72-mile Coal Creek XC Challenge is a noteworthy race to add to the fall calendar. It’s fast, it’s fun and it’s definitely a bit out of the ordinary. Sponsored by the Colorado Masters Running/Racewalking Association, this race has a quirky course that traverses farm fields, dirt trails, hills, some tricky ditches and a stream crossing. With that kind of terrain, the race director reminds newbies to bring a fresh pair of shoes for the after-party.
Rock ‘n’ Roll Denver Marathon and 1/2
Oct. 20, Denver
Part of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series, the Denver race is not to be missed. Giving runners a chance to experience 26.2 or 13.1 miles in the mile-high city, the festive courses loop through the spectator-friendly roads of downtown Denver, offering an urban adventure framed by stunning views of the Rocky Mountains. A two-day Health and Fitness expo and big post-race party at Civic Center Park is all part of the fun.
Women’s Running Half Marathon & 5K
Nov. 3, Scottsdale, Ariz.
With the 110-degree days a distant memory, Scottsdale is the perfect setting for an early-November half marathon. Featuring an average high of 75 dry degrees, this friendly female race, part of a series stretching from Florida to California, takes off at 7 a.m. in downtown Scottsdale. The 5K starts in nearby Tempe, and both races finish at Tempe Beach Park. The half marathon and 5K feature plenty of race-day support, festive costumes and an après-race scene that only a bunch of mademoiselles on a mission can create.