Race: Aspen Half Marathon
Runner: Lon Welsh
Race Date: 07/15/2023
Location: Aspen CO
3 Bests – What aspects of the race did you like the most?
- Really well organized
- Small, intimate race (around 300 in the half marathon)
Not so much – Aspects of the race that didn’t do it for you
NA. Really well executed
Weird factor – What’s the weirdest thing about this race?
Loved having champagne at the finish line; better than usual food offerings.
Highlights of your race – What did you do well and enjoy about your race in particular?
Scenery was great. It’s an average 1% downhill grade. I think that helped my time a little. Not so much of a downhill that I had shin splints or any other leg aches after. If you are used to Denver’s elevation, this higher elevation (I think the start is 7000′) won’t be an issue.
Lessons for others – Share your pro-tips on the race to help the next runner
If you are coming from sea level, try to come a few days early to get used to the altitude.
Lessons you learned that will help you next time around
You can easily do your bib pickup the morning off. It’s such a small group the line was short.
Most important course specific knowledge to know about the race
Have a friend drop you off at start line or take bus; no parking at half marathon start.
Aesthetics – Is it a pretty course?
Yes, yes, yes!
Difficulty – Is it a tough course?
No. Unless you have problems with altitude
Organized and well run – Did it feel like a well-oiled machine or were they flying by the seat of their pants?
They had more volunteers than needed. Really well organized.
Competition – Is there a strong field?
Yes! I was in top 15% of the Denver Colfax half marathon just a few weeks ago. There were only 4 men my age, and I was the slowest! Even though I ran three minutes faster! Really strong group.
Logistics – Does it require a special handshake, registration a year in advance, hotels all booked? Give us the low down on the nuts and bolts of making the race happen.
Suggest stay in Basalt, which is the finish line. Hotels and restaurants are a LOT cheaper than Aspen.
Aid Stations – Standard fare or anything special to know about the aid stations in terms of what’s available or when?
Normal fare, and there were a good number of stations.
Weather and typical race conditions
Perfect!! Start around 50 degrees, sunny, and not much wind.
Gear – Did you need anything special or is there anything you’d recommend for the next runner?
Spectators – Is this a friendly course for your friends?
There are a few places where they could cheer you on
How’s the Swag?
Limited since it’s a small group.
The Overall Score – How many stars do you give this race and do you recommend that others run it?
5/5. If you want a pretty mountain course, you’d have a hard time beating this.