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Alaska…….Denali……Big, Wild & Wide Open Places.
After a super successful inaugural running in 2023, we're excited to again offer the Denali50K in 2024. With 20,310’ tall Denali and surrounding Alaska Range Mountains and glaciers as its backdrop, the 135 Mile Denali Highway is the setting for the spectacular Denali135, Denali100K & Denali50K Endurance Races. The Denali Highway was the original and only road into Denali National Park from 1957 until 1971 and it is still as breathtaking and jaw dropping today as it was more than 50 years ago.
Hardy and qualified adventurous athletes from around the World are invited to challenge themselves along one of the most scenic sections of the the historic gravel road from Paxson Alaska, the headwaters of the wild Gulkana River, to Cantwell Alaska…. Adjacent to the entrance to Denali National Park.
Superlative panoramic vistas reach out for miles in every direction bathed in the nearly 20hrs of arctic daylight each day during the race. National Geographic rightly called the Denali Highway one of the top ten most scenic roads in North America.
The Denali50k will be limited to 50 runners and their crew and pacers.
Registration Opens September 1, 2023
Registration Closes May 1 2024 or when 50 runners have registered
Qualifying races must be submitted by May 7 2024 .
**Runners will be informed of their registration acceptance if they are received along with their qualifying race info.
*** Runners Info Package and Crew & Pacer Rules will be sent within 30 days of their registration acceptance. Once runners are accepted, they will be responsible for passing the Crew & Pacer Rules onto their respective crews and pacers.
**There will be no refunds for the Denali135,Denali100K or Denali50K races. Possible deferments to the next year’s race may…MAY…be made at the sole discretion of the race director. As you can imagine, significant logistics are involved in organization of this race and so we simply are unable to make refunds…..deferments possibly…refunds…sorry
Denali50K Race Schedule
June 21st- 7:15am– Mandatory Pre-Race Briefing at Maclaren Summit Starting Line
June 21st - 8:00am Race Start at Maclaren Summit.
June 21st - 5pm Race Cut-off at finish line near Alpine Creek Lodge.
June 23rd – 6:00pm Post Race Party and Dinner at Denali Education Center in Talkeetna. Dinner tickets can be purchased in the "Store" on this page. A portion of registration fees and dinner ticket proceeds go to the non-profit Denali Education Center.
Nuts and Bolts
Race Format & Time Cut-Offs
Event's current local time: 7:30 PM AK
Individual runners with optional support crew. Pacers with prior approval from Race Director only. Maximum of 9hrs allotted to complete the Denali50K.
Each runner may be accompanied by a support vehicle/crew who can supply food and water and support to the runner during and throughout the race. Pacers will only be allowed in unique circumstances and be approved by the Race Director prior to the race.
Support Vehicle and Crew & Pacer Rules/Details will be sent to runners within 30 days of their registrations being accepted.
Runners completing the Denali50K course in 9hrs or under will receive a one of a kind handmade uniquely Alaskan finishers medal and Denali50K finishers shirt. There will be overall men’s and women’s winners special awards as well.
Denali50K Applicants must have completed at least three marathons in the previous 2 years with one of those being a trail marathon unless waived by the Race Director.
The Denali50K has the same runner cap of 50 runners.
The Denali50K begins at Maclaren Summit which is at Mile 37 (From Paxson) the highest point on the Denali Highway and also happens to be the third highest road pass in the Alaska highway system. From Maclaren Summit, the road descends Northwestward towards the Maclaren River with the mighty Alaska Range covering the entire horizon from west to east. The road passes through Thermokarst, Eskers and Kettle lakes left long ago when Ice Age Glaciers melted. The course winds it’s way to the one and only aid station on the Denali50K which is at Mile 18 of the 50K course at Clearwater Creek Wayside. From there, runners continue their westward push and finish at Alpine Creek Lodge where a well deserved burger and beer can be found. Alpine Creek Lodge is also the start of the Denali100K.