Helen Holiday Trail Half Marathon
14 December 2019
Seasoned veterans and Trail Newbies alike, get ready for one of the most beautiful half marathons you've ever run! Reminiscint of a Bavarian alpine town, Helen, Georgia is the South's quaint little gateway to the vast beauty of the North Georgia mountains. On this special race weekend, not only will you experience the whimsical beholdings of Unicoi State Park's beautiful trails, but you'll be able to stroll through the streets of Helen the nights before and after the race to enjoy the first weekend of the Helen holiday light display! One EPICly beautiful way to kick of your holiday running season!This race is 50% women so ladies here is your chance to come have fun on a safe trail with rolling hills and amazing views. Also enjoy us for a fun weekend of hanging out and relaxing!The run will be 90% on scenic single-track trails, using some or all of the following park trails: Bottoms loop, Lake Loop, Helen Trail, and the mountain bike trail. While trail races are a bit different, difficulty-wise from road races, this course is not crazy technically challenging, and is a great first race for trail newbies!
Runners will start the race inside the 1,050-acre park, which lies just a few minutes’ drive north of Helen, at the parking lot along Unicoi Bottoms Road.From there, the out-and-back course heads across the grassy meadow near the parking lot and into the forest, where runners will hit the trail along the park’s more than a dozen miles of single-track hiking and mountain biking trails, including the Bottoms Loop, Lake Loop and Helen Trail.Organizers emphasize that while the trails are more difficult than your typical road race — since they’re run on natural surfaces, the terrain is uneven with rocks, sticks and maybe even muddy stretches, depending on the weather in the days leading up to the event — they’re not overly technically challenging for most runners and make an excellent race for beginning trail runners. “This is a great first race for trail newbies!” the website says.Along the route, you’ll run through meadows, across streams and keep largely on single-track dirt trails through the forest inside the park, which should feature all the reds, golds and yellows of fall color on the leaves this time of year.
We highly encourage everyone to visit Unicoi State Park before and after the race. Don't foget, the beautiful Unicoi State Park & Lodge is the perfect place to stay- literally walking distance from the start/finish area!!