7:00 am Start
7 hour time limit
Half Marathon: 9:00am start
4.5 hour time limit
5k: 10:30 am Start
All races start and finish on the field adjoining the Chattahoochee River. See the Race Details section for directions to the start and parking info.
ALL RACES HAVE A MANDATORY PRE RACE MEETING 20 MINUTES BEFORE THE START. THE MEETING WILL GO OVER THE COURSE AND MAKE SURE YOU DONT' GET LOST.
Runners can pickup their packet either Friday night or on race day. Packet pickup will be available from 3 pm - 5 pm at the start/finish area on Friday night. Race day packet pickup will be available starting at 6:15 am on race day (Saturday)- this will also be at the start/finish area.
PARKING & DIRECTIONS:
Enter Helen on Hwy 17/75/Main Street. You will turn on Brucken Strasse. (There is a Circle K Gas station at the corner.) The address of the Circle K gas station is 7934 S Main St, Helen, GA 30545, so if you put that into your GPS you will get to the intersection of Brucken Strasse and Hwy 17/75/Main Street. Once at this intersection, drive down Brucken Strasse about 300 meters. You will cross the Chattahoochee River. IMMEDIATELY after the bridge, there is a private drive on your left. Turn left into the private drive (there will be a Helenback sign to direct you). At the fork, keep left to continue along the river. Drive about 200 meters to get to the start/finish field and the parking area. We will have parking for about 150 cars. When the start/finish field is full, cars will need to park across the river at the outlet mall (we will have signs/parking attendants directing you). If you park across the river, simply walk back to Brucken Strasse, cross the bridge over the river, and walk down the path to the start/finish field (it's about a .25 mile walk from the overflow parking to the start/finish field).
Our preferred lodging partner is Unicoi State Park. The have numerous lodging options available (rooms at the lodge, cabins, and campsites) and the park is only minutes from the start and finish of the race.
Unicoi State Park has offered Helenback Race Series participants a special promotional rate to stay at the park. Use rate code "10047" when you call or book online for the race weekend. Using the "10047" code will get Helenback runners the following rates on their rooms:
Lodge: $129 (plus taxes and fees)
2 Room Cabin: $189 (plus taxes and fees)
3 Room Cabin: $219 (plus taxes and fees)
We appreciate your support of Unicoi State Park. Without the park's help, the race would not be possible.
Book now! Online: https://www.unicoilodge.com
PS Even if you book a campsite, please use the rate code above. While it does not give you a discount, it allows Unicoi to track how many runners use their facilities. We WANT the race to be worthwhile/profitable for Unicoi as they allow us access to these great trails!
Go to www.getguts.com/race/helenback to view course descriptions, elevation profiles, and maps.
AID STATIONS & CUTOFFS
There will be several aid stations for the Marathon & Half Marathon. Runners should expect to get aid every 4-6 miles. If you need water/food at a greater frequency than the aid stations, you should bring your own water bottle/hydration pack and food. Go to www.helenbackraceseries.com for full details.
Local time: 2:04 AM
We have strict cutoff times for the marathon and 1/2 marathon. This is to make sure that we don't keep our volunteers out on the trails for hours upon hours. Any runner who does not make a cutoff will be given a ride back to the start. We believe all of our the runners are capable of doing great things. We also want to respect our volunteers. A runner who continues to run past the cutoff time is essentially running without any support and possibly without trail markings (thus, getting lost is a major concern). So, if you are asked to stop, please abide by this rule and come back next year to give it another shot:)
1. Need to be past Anna Ruby Falls by 9 am (approx 6 miles)
2. 1st blood (Mile 9.6): 9:30 AM (If you do not meet cutoff at 1st blood, you will not be allowed to go up Tray Mountain. You can continue on the 1/2 marathon course to the finish)
3. Tray Mountain (Mile 15): 11 am
4. Bear Trap (Mile 21.9): 12:45 pm
Half Marathon Cutoffs:
1. Bear Trap: 11:45 am
2. Field: 12:15 pm