Sunday, May 17, 1998
This Event Took Place Sun. May 17, 1998

The Ohlone Wilderness 50K - “Always arduous but strikingly beautiful”


The Ohlone Wilderness 50K is recognized as one of toughest 50 Kilometer trail races in the United States. This classic and iconic ultramarathon is held along the entirety of the Ohlone Wilderness trail, in the eastern region hills of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Traveling across the land once home to indigenous tribes, and now habitat to abundant wildlife, the course traverses four regional parks: Mission Peak Regional Preserve, Sunol Regional Wilderness, Ohlone Regional Wilderness, and Del Valle Regional Park.

With near 8,000 feet climbing, and high ridges including 2,517 ft Mission Peak and leading up to the 3,817 ft summit of Rose Peak, you will put your grit and endurance to test, all while treated with spectacular views of the Bay Area and surrounding mountains.

REGISTRATION OPENS AT 12 AM PST ON JANUARY 1ST.

The Course:

The distance is 31 miles, with 7,800 feet elevation gain, and 7,440 feet descent. A mix of trail and fire roads, a large section of the terrain is extreme, exposed and rugged. The vast majority of the course follows the Ohlone Wilderness trail. The course deviates from the marked Ohlone trail in several places in order to add distance or to access water.

Plan for heat. It’s hard to bet against hot weather. Of course, we’ve had rain, hail, and forty-degree temperatures. In most years, race day has started with fog in the morning that gives way to increasing heat and sun throughout the day Temperatures are usually in the 80’s to mid-90’s but have topped 100 in some years. Be prepared! Best advice is to watch the forecasts and prepare accordingly. Wear a hat, bring your sunglasses, slather on the sunscreen. By all means - carry water. It's recommended carrying at least two bottles.

Leave no trace - Please remember that this race is held in a wilderness area. It is essential that we respect the trail by not littering or leaving anything on the trail. The remoteness of our course also means that we have extremely limited vehicle access to the backcountry. With the exception of medical emergencies, there are no “rides out” once you depart the Sunol aid station at mile nine.

Aid Stations:

In an effort to minimize waste and littering, the Ohlone Wilderness 50K is a cupless event. You will NOT find any disposable cups at aid stations. Each runner is responsible for bringing their own reusable cup or water bottle.

There are seven aid stations on the course in addition to fluids at the start. On the course, there are two kinds of aid stations. Four full-aid stations at which you can find a variety of food and fuels. There will also be three limited aid stations provisioned with water and the bare essentials to keep you going. In addition to the seven staffed aid stations, there is self-service, water-only stop.

At the finish, you can expect a pinic BBQ hot and cold food as well as a variety of drinks - free to all runners and volunteers. Hang around and relax after you finish.

Cut-off Times:

For the sake of runner safety, park regulations, and out of consideration to the event volunteers, the following cut-offs will be enforced:

Runners must exit the Sunol aid station (9.11 miles) by 10:45 am (2:45 after the 8:00 am start). Transportation back to the start, or to the finish, will be provided for runners not making this cut-off.

Runners must exit the Backpack Area aid station (12.48 miles) by 11:45 am (3:45 after the 8:00 am start). Runners not making it to the Backpack aid station by 11:30 am will be retired from the race and must return (walk) back to Sunol for transportation to the Finish area.

Runners must complete the course by 6:00 pm (10 hours after the 8:00 am start). Runners finishing after 6:00 pm will receive their goodie bag, but will not receive a finisher’s award or be listed as a finisher in the official results.

Crew Access:

Aside from the Start and Finish, the only crew access on the course is at Sunol (9.11 miles). This is also the site of a major aid station. Note: There is a fee for Sunol park entry.

PAUSATF Ultra Grand Prix:



This race is a championship event in the 2019 Mountain Ultra Trail Grand Prix Series. You do not need to be a member of the Pacific Association of the USA Track & Field Association in order to participate, but you do have to be a member in order to qualify for Grand Prix points.

By the community, for the community:

The Ohlone Wilderness 50K is organized as a large all-volunteering non-profit effort. This race benefits the East Bay Regional Parks District. EBRPD is a system of public parks and trails in Alameda and Contra Costa counties on the eastern side of San Francisco Bay.

In the true spirit of mountain and ultra running, the event is meant to provide an experience to reestablish a connection between the self and the environment.

Local time: 1:00 AM
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