Vacation Races is excited to announce their newest Global Adventures location: Alaska! This all-inclusive running adventure will take place September 5th-12th, 2020 and will be a trip of a lifetime. Every day participate in a trail run through majestic and rugged Alaska. The term “trail run” is used loosely here, as lots of the time you will be hiking because it’s uphill, or because you just want to slow down and take in the scenery. All runs will be around 5-10k in length and have some elevation gain.
After each day’s runs, enjoy lunch together before either relaxing free time in the afternoon or another adventure such as kayaking or hiking to a glacier. End the day with dinner and more decompressing. Runs will be timed and finishers will be awarded one medal at the end of the trip. Guests will also get some great high quality gear and souvenirs that you’ll cherish for years to come.
You’ll arrive in Anchorage, Alaska by Saturday afternoon and either take a taxi or airport shuttle to our hotel for the first night.
Vacation Races will check you in and get everyone oriented for what to expect throughout the week. It’s also your first chance to meet your fellow adventurers! Dinner is included the first night.
Trail run: 7k; Elevation gain: 600 feet; Point to Point
Famed Hatcher Pass is the destination for today. Everyone will arrive at Hatcher Pass and run past the mine up to Hatcher Pass overlook before running back to the mine. There runners will enjoy a catered lunch and have some time to wander around the grounds.
After lunch we’ll head out to an Iditarod Experience. We’ll see an exciting sledding demonstration, and meet the racing dogs and this season’s litter of puppies. End the night with dinner and relaxing.
Trail run: 12k; Elevation gain: 400 feet; Point to Point
In the morning leave Girdwood and head to Whittier. On the way, guests will stop and run the Blue Ice Trail and see the salmon swimming upstream on this secluded trail along the highway, with views of Byron Glacier in the distance.
Following the run, continue to Whittier to experience a 5 hour boat tour on the glacial waters where you are likely to see wildlife while on the tour of the glaciers. Relax this evening with dinner and new friends!
Trail run: 6k; Elevation gain: 650 feet; Loop
Head to Seward today and drive along the famed Turnagain Arm. This peninsula got its name from Captain Cook himself after commanding his crew to “TURN AGAIN!” every time they went into a cove thinking it was a way out.
Today’s adventure will include kayaking where you will paddle past driftwood ghost forests from the 1964 Alaskan earthquake to the north beach of Caines Head. This is where you will have your run before heading back to the town of Seward which will be your stay for the next two nights. Dinner and relax.
Trail run:7k; Elevation gain: 2300 feet; Loop
Wake up in Seward and run from the hotel on part of the Mount Marathon course. You of course don’t want a trip to the hospital which is located at the base of the finish line. For the run you’ll get all the views without the stitches.
Once everyone comes down the beautiful Mount, you’ll enjoy a nice lunch overlooking the Seward waterfront. End the afternoon kayaking on the waters with the local sea life. Dinner & relaxing in the evening.
Trail run: 10k; Elevation gain: 300 ft; Point to point run
Leave Seward today and head south towards Homer. Enjoy sightseeing along the way before making a stop at Diamond Gulch. Remember when your mom threatened to make you walk home if you don’t keep asking “are we there yet?” Well today is your lucky day! You get to run to your hotel on an amazing trail along the coast until you reach the beach. The run will end a few blocks from the hotel at a state beach park.
After some time to clean up join the shuttle to the boardwalk where you will enjoy some time on your own for dinner and sightseeing. Stop by the Salty Dog Saloon and hang some $ on the walls, ceiling or yep, even the floor.
Trail hike: 12K; Elevation gain: minimal; Point to point hike
TAXI! Well a water taxi that is. After a quick shuttle ride to the boardwalk, everyone will board water taxis and enjoy a nice 40 minute ride to Kachemak Bay, where you’ll give your legs a needed break and take this day to enjoy the hike out to the Grewingk Glacier to eat a packed lunch with the icebergs floating in the lake. Enjoy dinner and a relaxing evening.
This morning, you’ll head back to Anchorage where all good things must come to an end, until the next adventure that is! The hotel is on Global Adventure, but you are free to tour Anchorage, do some shopping or just relax by the pool at the hotel.
If the party is over for you and you don’t want to hang out anymore on the drive back, you are welcome to fly from Homer to Anchorage. Flights are pretty reasonable.
How difficult are the runs and hikes? What is the activity level?
Each day you’ll be running/hiking between 3-6 miles. Most of the runs will have a decent amount of elevation gain. Most everyone will be walking the uphills of our runs while running the flats and downhills. Vacation Races expects runners to maintain at least a 25-minute pace on these trail runs.
Do I have to run every day?
This is your vacation—you should do what you want! If you want to take a brake for a day or two, then by all means do it. Vacation Races’ goal is to make sure you have the best possible experience on the trails, whatever that means for you.
Are there aid stations?
There are no aid stations in these trail runs. Most people will be either using a hydration backpack or carrying a water bottle in hand, along with a few gels or other snacks if needed. You are required to bring your own hydration system. Vacation Races is partnered with Nathan Sports, which provide awesome hydration options.
Are there options for a partner that doesn’t want to run?
If you want to bring a partner to the event that doesn’t want to participate in the runs, that’s totally fine. Vacation Races will knock off $300 from your partner’s registration fee if you choose this option. Let us know if you want to explore this option.
What are the accommodations like?
Vacation Races will have 3-star lodging booked for you. Rooms will be comfortable and clean and safe, but no frills; a place that you would feel ok relaxing in.
What about Vegan and Vegetarian food options?
There will be vegetarian options for our runners at all meals. Most meals will also have vegan options, but Vacation Races can’t guarantee vegan options for all meals.
How much free time will we have?
Expect to have a few hours of free time each day, either exploring the towns you’ll visit or wandering around waterfronts just taking in the grandeur of the place. Vacation Races’ goal is to have enough adventure to fill your days without feeling rushed from location to location.
What about animals on the trails? Bears? Moose? Mosquitos?
If you are lucky, you’ll get to see these animals! You will be visiting wild places and encounters with animals are always a possibility. However, you will be on well traveled trails, which tends to keep the animals away. Vacation Races is also partnering with expert guides from the area to provide tips on staying safe on the trails. As for mosquitos, some years are better and some are worse, but you should plan on bringing mosquito repellent.
Are there any age restrictions?
There are no age restrictions for these trips. As long as you are comfortable with the runs and activities, Vacation Races will be glad to have you if you’re 12 or 112 years old!
A deposit of $500 is due upon booking, after which the remaining balance will be charged on March 13, 2020.
Pricing is per-person, but based on double occupancy of all hotel rooms. That means, if you register with a partner, you will be able to stay with them. If you register as solo adventurer, we will pair you with someone else of the same gender in a hotel room.
If you prefer to have your hotel room to yourself, the cost will be $800 extra to cover the additional hotel expense.
Cancellation & Transfer Policy
The deposit of $500 is refundable until March 13, 2020. If you choose to cancel after that time, there are 2 options available for you: