**Marathon update — 2021 race canceled**
The Yakima River Canyon Marathon committee entered 2021 with cautious hope that with Covid safety protocols in place, we could put on a downsized version of the race. Regretfully, as we have moved forward with planning, the committee has determined that we cannot do so and assure the safety of the runners, volunteers and spectators.
So as in 2020, the committee has decided to cancel the race in 2021. We now are focusing our efforts on April 2, 2022, and we urge runners to do the same.
Those who registered on or after January 1st, 2021 will have the option of rolling their entry over to 2022 or requesting a refund. We ask that you specify which option you prefer by the deadline of February 20th, 2021.
Those who rolled over their entries from 2020 will again be automatically rolled over to 2022—please email Frank Purdy with any questions.
One major reason for this year’s cancellation is that Covid-related restrictions on indoor events would not allow our much-anticipated tribute to longtime Race Director Lenore Dolphin, who passed away in March 2020. We know many runners want to honor her memory in their next trip to the Yakima River Canyon Marathon.
In short, we want to do this event right, and we have decided that we can’t do so this year. We will try again next year, and we hope that you will join us on April 2, 2022.
—Frank Purdy, race director
Yakima River Canyon Marathon & Half Marathon 2021
The year 2020 seemed to spare no one in hardship, and the Yakima River Canyon Marathon endured its share. Not only did the coronavirus pandemic lead to the cancellation of the 2020 race, the marathon community mourned the untimely passing of longtime race director Lenore Dolphin. The good news is that race organizers have decided to move forward with the race on March 27, 2021. We have done so in consultation with local health authorities, and participants in the marathon and half-marathon will be asked to observe masking and social distancing protocols. Registrants in 2020 who asked to have their entries carried over to 2021 have had their request honored; they do not need to take any further registration action. Entries will be limited to 200 in the marathon and 200 in the half-marathon; once the available slots are filled, registrants will be put on a waiting list. To assure social distancing, the start will be done in waves, and runners will be asked to wear a mask except when competing. Spectators also will need to wear masks at all times. Unfortunately, this year we will not be able to gather indoors for the Friday night pasta dinner/program and the Saturday night potato feed/awards ceremony. Age-group placers may pick up their awards after the race with masking protocols in effect.
SATURDAY March 27, 2021
Marathon Start Time: 8:00 a.m. (course closes at 3:00pm)
Half-Marathon Start Time: 9:30 a.m. (course closes at 3:00pm)
(both events are USAT&F Certified. See Certifications below)
RACE HEADQUARTERS: Selah Civic Center, 216 South First Street, Selah, Washington.
CLICK HERE FOR MAP AND DIRECTIONS
ENTRY FEE (both events): $80.00 until 2/28/2021. From March 1, 2021 until midnight on March 24, 2021, the fee will be $95. There will be no in-person registration on the day of the race.
Entry Includes: The (Non-Refundable) Entry includes T-shirt, race-day transportation (if needed), finisher medal, and a finisher’s certificate.
REGISTRATION & PACKET PICKUP:
REGISTER ONLINE (No mail-in registrations accepted):
click below to register
3-8 p.m. No in-person registration. Please wear a mask.
PACKET PICKUP at the Race Headquarters:
ABOUT THE EVENT - A RUNNER TESTIMONIAL
A marathon that you really should consider for the whole weekend’s experience is the Yakima River Canyon. It simply beats any other marathon experience PERIOD. At the end of the carbo loading dinner the night before, everyone know everyone. Getting on the buses and on the beautiful course the next morning it’s old home week with new friends. At the afternoon baked potato salad bar awards dinner it is simply a hoot. I always stay two nights.
If not ready for a marathon, who cares? There are many, many slow runners and walkers and they are as well embraced, perhaps more so, than the front runners.
You’ll rub elbows with many wide-eyed first timers and many knurly veterans that will astound middle of the packers, back of the packers, all equals at the end of the day.
Well, that’s my take, other locals and those who travel across the country each year and don’t need another WA State feel the same. COOL!
Thanks….Jim Boyd, Aberdeen, WA
ACTIVITIES AT RACE HEADQUARTERS:
- FRIDAY, March 26th:
• Packet pickup, 3-8 p.m. No in-person registration. Please wear a mask.
- Saturday, March 27th:
• Shuttle Bus Service to Ellensburg Start Line (Early Start) – 5:00 a.m.
• Marathon Shuttle Bus Service to Ellensburg Days Inn – 6:00 a.m..
• Half Marathon Shuttle Bus Service to Start Line – 8:00 a.m.
• Shuttle Bus Service from Finish area to the Selah Civic Center and the Best Western Ahtanum Inn between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
• Shuttle Bus Service to Ellensburg – At 1:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. from finish area.
• Awards Ceremony – Awards may be picked up at the Selah Civic Center. Please wear a mask.
COURSE RECORDS, CERTIFICATIONS, MAPS & DESCRIPTIONS:
- COURSE RECORDS (Marathon & Half Marathon) – Click Here
- COURSE USAT&F CERTIFICATIONS
Marathon – Click Here
Half Marathon – Click Here
MARATHON RACE START
Use Exit 109 from I-90. Go south past the Buzz Inn and Flying J Truck Plaza. Take the first left onto Berry Road…to the race start headquarters at the Days Inn, 901 Berry Road. The starting line is on Canyon Road .2 mile south of the Berry Road intersection. (see map) For safety reasons running in the right lane is recommended, but not mandatory.
MARATHON COURSE DESCRIPTION: This point-to-point Marathon course is exceptionally scenic as it offers spectacular views of the Yakima River Canyon. It starts on Canyon Road .2 mile south of the Berry Road intersection in Ellensburg, Washington. After two loops, it proceeds directly south to the canyon. There are two major hills and many curves as the course follows the Yakima River downstream on the asphalt surfaced highway. The long downhill just before the finish in rural Selah, Washington, near the canyon’s mouth contributes to the net elevation loss of a few hundred feet as it brings the runners to the Yakima Valley orchard and ranch country.
Drop bags to go to the Finish Area may be left at the designated vehicle in front of the Days Inn on race morning before 7:45 a.m. Do not place cash or expensive items in the bags. The bags will be supervised, but we will not be responsible for lost or stolen items.
Aid stations will be located every 2-3 miles to provide water, Powerade, and medical aid of band-aids and petroleum jelly. Medical personnel and restrooms will be available throughout the race.
Use exit 26 from I-82. Take Highway 821 north about 3 miles. (see map)
There will be bus transportation from the finish area to the Selah Civic Center and to the Best Western Ahtanum Inn.
The course will be open for 7 hours. Runners and walkers who have not finished by 3:00 p.m. will be given rides to the finish area. Early starts are allowed only with special permission. Only official and local vehicles are allowed on the race course. Spectators may view the race at the start, finish, and Thrall Road intersection with Canyon Road. There are no accessible intersections in the canyon. No bicycles or baby joggers are allowed on the course.
HALF MARATHON RACE START TIME & LOCATION:
The 9:30 a.m. start is at the 13.1 mile marker of the Marathon. All participants will be bused to the start. At 8:00 a.m. three buses will leave the Selah Civic Center, 216 South First Street, Selah, WA and one will leave from the Best Western Ahtanum Inn, 2408 Rudkin Road, Yakima, WA. There will be no early starts.
HALF MARATHON COURSE DESCRIPTION: This Half-Marathon course will start at the 13.1-Mile mark of the Marathon Course for a point-to-point. The course is exceptionally scenic as it offers spectacular views of the Yakima River Canyon. The Half Marathon Participants will be bused to the start (no need to reserve bus). Three buses will leave the Civic Center at 8:00 a.m. for the starting area, and one bus will leave the Best Western Ahtanum Inn (2408 Rudkin Road, Yakima) at 8:00 a.m. SPECIAL NOTE: NO EARLY START
Personal Gear to be taken to the Finish Area:
Drop bags may be left on a designated bus at the start.
The course will close at 3:00 p.m.
All passengers will be required to wear masks while riding.
MARATHON – Buses will leave at 6:00 a.m. from the Selah Civic Center and the Best Western Ahtanum Inn to take participants to the Days Inn gathering area in Ellensburg.
HALF MARATHON – Buses will leave at 8:00 a.m. from the Selah Civic Center and the Best Western Ahtanum Inn for the starting line at the 13.1 mile marker of the half marathon.
AWARDS & DIVISIONS:
Awards will be presented to the top three male and female finishers and to the first three finishers in the age divisions (male & female 19 and under, then five year increments to 85+). All entrants will receive a T-shirt, and all finishers will receive a finishers medal.
LODGING, ACCOMMODATIONS & WEATHER:
Sun Country Inn, 1700 N. 1st Street, 1-800-559-3675
*Sun Country Inn is under new management with a new name!
Best Western Ahtanum Inn, 2408 Rudkin Rd., 1-800-348-9701
*There will be race day bus service from the Best Western Ahtanum Inn to the starting areas and from the finish area
*Marathon Bus - 6:00a.m. Half Marathon Bus - 8:00a.m.
Days Inn, 901 Berry Road, 1-888-889-9870
Comfort Inn, 1722 Canyon Road, (509)925-7037
The average low temperature this time of year is 29 degrees and the average high is 56 degrees.
CLICK HERE TO VIEW ARCHIVED RESULTS – YEARS 2001 – 2018
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Contact: Race Director - Frank Purdy
Phone: (509) 961-9769