Location: Banks High School, Banks, OR
Date: Sunday, April 16, 2023
Time: Start times: Marathon 8:00 am; Half Marathon 9:00 am
Registration is now open!
Imagine running a beautiful, tree-lined course along the 21-mile Banks-Vernonia State Trail. Both events feature a gentle 7-mile, 400-foot downhill into Banks. This Boston Marathon qualifier is run on a point-to-point course, with 23 miles closed to vehicular traffic. The marathon starts in Vernonia and the half marathon in Stub Stewart State Park.
The 2023 Vernonia Marathon and Half Marathon is scheduled for April 16th, 2023. Registration will open approximately 4 months prior to race day. Hope to see you there!
Registration and Fees
• Marathoners (runners and walkers) start at 8 a.m.
• Half marathoners (runners and walkers) start at 9 a.m.
• The course closes at 3 p.m.
The Marathon Course
The marathon starts at Cedar Ridge Retreat Center in Vernonia, goes around the lake, and proceeds onto the Banks-Vernonia State Trail, and finishes at Banks High School on the track. Most of the course runs along paved trail, through scenic woods on a former railroad bed. The course includes a gradual uphill from Miles 9 to 13 and downhill from Mile 14 to 21, where it is flat to the finish: see elevation plot. The trail crosses several roads, at which traffic control will be provided. Although the trail is closed to vehicular traffic, be cognizant that it is not closed to the two-way traffic of other runners, walkers, bicyclists, hikers and horseback riders. Therefore, always keep to the right, only two abreast, to allow passing bicyclists, runners and opposing traffic through.
- Coffee: Cedar Ridge Resort (Vernonia Marathon start location) will provide coffee for all full marathoners.
- Marathon Aid stations and potties: at Miles 2, 4, 7, 10, 11.5, 13, 15.5, 19, 21.5, 23, 25. There will be water, Gatorade, Gu, plus sweet and salty snacks at each aid station.
- Traffic will NOT be stopped when you are crossing Highway 47 at Tophill Trailhead (near the half marathon mark). There will be flaggers slowing traffic, but you must defer to vehicles when you are crossing the highway.
The Half Marathon Course
The half marathon starts inside Stub Stewart State Park at Hilltop and joins the Banks-Vernonia State Trail at Mile 2, and finishes at Banks High School on the track. Most of the course runs along the paved trail, through scenic woods on an abandoned railroad bed. The course is uphill for the first mile, downhill until mile 7 and flat to the finish. The trail crosses several roads, but is otherwise closed to traffic; traffic control will be provided. Aid stations and potties will be provided at Miles 2, 5.5, 8,10.5, 12. There will be water, Gatorade, Gu, and sweet and salty snacks at each aid station. This course is USATF certified.
- Download the Banks Vernonia trail map (PDF) and view the course map.
- Click here to view the USATF course certification document (OR18011LB).
Early packet pickup will be on Saturday, April 15 from 3 to 6 p.m.
Day of Race pickup will be from 6 to 8 a.m. Both days, pick up will be at Banks Middle School (12850 NW Main Street, Banks OR 97106). You may pick up bibs for other runners. In-person registration will be available both at these times. Unclaimed bibs will be brought to their respective starts.
Course accuracy, Expected Weather, Transfers
Course Accuracy: These courses are USATF certified (i.e., measured with a calibrated bicycle to the standards adopted by the USATF Road Running Technical Council). Due to multiple factors including trees and other objects that interfere with satellite signals, personal GPS devices do not measure distance as accurately as the method used to measure the courses.
Weather: The weather for this event is typically mid-40s in the morning and low 60s in the afternoon, although some years there has been rain and even snow. Check the forecast before the race and dress accordingly.
Switching Events: You may switch from the marathon to the half. If you decide to do this before the start, please contact the race director ASAP or report the change at the Day of Race registration table.
Fees: are not refundable but may be transferable to other ORRC events.
Cupless: THIS EVENT IS CUPLESS. We will NOT provide paper cups at aid stations. Participants are expected to bring their own hand helds, hydration packs or reusable cups. Aid station workers will have pitchers to fill containers and there will be rapid-fill spigots on some water jugs.
Results and Photos
All results and photos are available – click here.
Plaques to the overall male, female and non-binary winners in the open and masters categories for both events. The top five finishers in each five year age group will earn ribbons. The walk is non-competitive, so there are no separate awards for walkers. Awards will not be mailed. All finishers will receive a medal.
ORRC is providing (prepared by the Vernonia Boosters) for all event participants: hot soup, baked potatoes, beverages, and snacks at Banks Middle School (BMS) after the race. Awards ceremonies and raffle (prizes to include running gear and pies) will begin at approximately 12:30 and 1:30 p.m., for the half marathon and marathon events, respectively. Showers will be available for free. Bring your own towel.
Buses, Drop Bags
The race is point-to-point. Participants, please park in Banks. Park at Banks Middle School, at Sunset Speedway Park, at Banks Elementary, or on city streets. We will provide shuttle buses to take you from Banks to your start line. The first bus for the marathon leaves Banks Middle School at 6:15 a.m. and the last bus to Vernonia (the marathon start) leaves at 7 a.m. The first bus for the half marathon leaves at 7 a.m. and the last bus to Stub Stewart (the half start) leaves at 8 a.m. If you miss the last bus you are responsible for getting yourself to the start. You may have someone drop you at the start, but you need to either pick up your bib/chip in Banks, or at the start line just before the starting time. Drop bags will be provided at the start areas and brought to the finish line. Lost and found items will be brought to BMS. There will be sweepers on the course to check for injuries and direct people to the nearest trailhead if they are hurt or unable to finish in the time allowed; transportation will be provided as needed.
Where to Cheer
Friends and family who want to cheer their runner/walker can access the course at the trailheads. Download a map of the Banks-Vernonia State Trail for details. There is limited parking at Cedar Ridge (marathon start) and Stub Stewart (the half marathon start). There are bleachers and limited parking at the Banks HS track (where both races finish).
Where to Stay
Vernonia has several Bed & Breakfasts. Banks has no motels. Forest Grove, just seven miles from Banks, has several motels and B & Bs. Hillsboro, just ten miles from Banks, also has several motels. View the Forest Grove Chamber of Commerce Lodging directory.
Showers: will be available for free at BMS. Bring your own towel.
More Results and Timing Information
This race is chip timed. Be sure to cross the mats at the start and the finish. Results will be available at the finish line, at Huber Timing (www.hubertiming.com/results/2018Vernonia).
A pair of custom Fitsoks is included in the registration fee.
Long Sleeve Tech T-shirt
A long-sleeved tech T-shirt is available for $20 (women’s and unisex sizing) and is NOT included in the registration fee. Shirts are only guaranteed for those who ordered them during preregistration; on day of race while supplies last.
- Headphones: The use of personal music devices is strongly discouraged at this race. To enjoy all that our race has to offer and for the safety of all participants, ORRC encourages a headphone-free environment during the running of the event.
- Strollers, baby joggers or similar devices are permitted, but should start in the back of the pack.
- Dogs are not permitted.
- Age limit: We discourage anyone younger than 15 from running this event.
- Share the trail: The trail is open other runners, walkers, hikers, horseback rider, and bicyclists, so please be mindful of others on the trail to ensure a safe and enjoyable race for everyone.
- Covid Safety Protocols
If you have questions about our Vernonia event, please contact our race director Mark Barrett via email at email@example.com.
Banks High School, Banks, OR