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Fruita Trail Half Marathon 2025

May 11, 2025

trail runners at adventure fest
Last Update May 24, 2024

The 2025 event date is not confirmed - The Fruita Trail Half Marathon is an integral part of Adventure Fest, a unique multi-sport experience in one of the Best Destinations for Outdoor Athletes - Fruita, Colorado, near Utah's border, combining MTB (Sarlacc Attack), Gravel (Dirty Edge Gravel), and a Trail running event in a one-weekend festival celebrating backcountry racing. Premier regional event operator Gemini Adventures produces the event and it's one that we consider to be one of the Best Trail Running Events in the Rockies. This stunning half-marathon course is a fun and exciting loop on flowy singletrack in Fruita, CO. Racers will experience breathtaking views of buttes, mesas, and landscapes across the Fruita desert as they traverse challenging terrain of short steep hills and beautiful descents. In total, racers will travel 13.8 miles of gorgeous open desert in pristine early-season condition and climb over 1,000’ vertical feet at the Fruita Trail Half Marathon.

Below you will find information on course details, lodging, dining, and other outdoor activities to do while in town for Fruita Trail Half Marathon.

Event & Course Info

The Fruita Trail Half Marathon offers a 13.8-mile loop through the beautiful early-season desert of Fruita, Colorado. The course features smooth, flowing singletrack with about 1000 feet of climbing, peppered with short, steep ascents and descents. Runners will be treated to stunning views of nearby buttes and mesas, making this race not only a physical challenge but also a visually rewarding experience.

The course runs counterclockwise, featuring challenging switchbacks and diverse terrain. To support racers, three aid stations are strategically placed along the route at Chutes and Ladders (3.5 miles), Frontside (7.5 miles), and Western (11.4 miles), offering gels, sports drinks, water, Skittles, and potato chips. However, to promote sustainability, cups will not be provided, and racers should bring their hydration gear.

Adventure Fest is more than just a race; it's a celebration of the outdoor and adventure community. After crossing the finish line, racers receive finisher's mementos, and the top three male and female finishers in each age group will earn custom cowbell awards. Placer's awards and raffle prizes will be distributed around 11:30 am, with the top finishers receiving complimentary entries to next year's race.

The event promises a lively atmosphere with beer, hot food, games, and opportunities to meet new friends or catch up with old ones. Families and crews are encouraged to attend, enhancing the communal vibe. As we celebrate the great outdoors, the Fruita desert serves as a perfect backdrop, with average May temperatures ranging from 48 to 79 degrees Fahrenheit, promising comfortable racing conditions.

Area Accommodations & Things to Do

Where to Stay in Fruita

After days of pushing physical limits, Fruita offers a range of accommodations to ensure a restful retreat. The hotel partner of Fruita Trail Half Marathon is Super 8 located downtown, while The Balanced Rock Inn is another option which has recently been remodeled; there are also choices like La Quinta or Comfort Inn. Alternatively, charming bed and breakfasts like the Castle Creek B&B or the Historic Downtown Motel offer a cozy escape with a touch of local hospitality. We also enjoy staying at one of the many great home-like experiences in the area and can personally vouch for Tour de Fruita.

That being said, it’s a great time of year to camp and there are a myriad of options including North Fruita Desert CampgroundFruita CO River SectionHighline State Park, and other unique one of a kind camping locations. However, participants of Fruita Trail Half Marathon often opt to reserve on-site camping at 18-road during registration.

Dining in Fruita

Downtown Fruita becomes a hub for post-activity, with local eateries and breweries welcoming tired but satisfied athletes. Fruita, CO, and the surrounding area boast a burgeoning culinary scene, offering a blend of traditional American fare, local delicacies, and eclectic dining options influenced by the region’s rich outdoor and cultural activities. The aroma of gourmet pizza from The Hot Tomato wafts through the air, providing the perfect culinary reward for a day spent conquering Fruita’s trails. Fruita’s burgeoning brewery scene, including spots like Copper Club Brewing Company, serves as a perfect post-adventure gathering point, while Best Slope Coffee is the go to spot for cyclist pre and post rides.

Outdoor Activities around Fruita

While the festival is the focal point of the weekend, Fruita’s allure extends beyond the slickrock and singletrack. Fruita is known for its rugged and beautiful landscape, which offers various outdoor sports activities. In addition to mountain biking, Fruita offers many other outdoor sports activities, such as hiking, rock climbing, and river rafting. The Colorado River flows through Fruita, providing whitewater rafting, kayaking, and fishing opportunities. This small town in the Colorado River’s Grand Valley, surrounded by the Book Cliffs to the north and the Colorado National Monument to the south. The city has an elevation of around 4,500 feet and covers an area of approximately 8 square miles. The Colorado National Monument, with its towering red cliffs and expansive views, beckons for exploration.

Naturally, one of the most popular activities in Fruita is mountain biking, with trails that cater to riders of all skill levels. The Kokopelli Trail System covers over 140 miles of terrain and is a favorite among riders. Other popular mountain biking trails include the Horsethief Bench Trail System, and the North Fruita Desert Trail System. Athletes can extend their adventure by tackling Rim Rock Drive via road bike, a scenic cycling route that winds through the geological marvel of Colorado National Monument.

For those with a penchant for pounding trails on foot, Fruita’s trail running scene is equally captivating. The Kokopelli Loops offer a mesmerizing array of singletrack options with breathtaking vistas of the Colorado River. Whether tackling the challenging Mary’s Loop or opting for the more moderate Rustler’s Loop, trail runners find themselves immersed in a desert symphony of color and solitude.

The surrounding area of The Grand Junction and Palisade area, or “Grand Valley,” also has many activities to enjoy, from local vineyards and breweries & distilleries to outdoor activities within the Colorado National Monument.

Related Events

Gemini Adventures, founded in 2003 by passionate runners, cyclists, and adventurers, curates challenging backcountry racing experiences set against mesmerizing landscapes primarily in Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. With events held in remote, scenic trails, participants can anticipate not just a race, but a unique outdoor experience where the journey is as rewarding as the competition. Their primary events include the Desert RATS Trail Running Festival which is part of the UTMB World Series, and Adventure Fest which is a unique multi-sport experience in Fruita, CO and includes Sarlacc Attack 50K MTB, Fruita Trail Half Marathon, and Dirty Edge Gravel one of the Best Gravel Cycling Race Events in Colorado and the Rockies. In July, Enchanted Forest Trail Races, one of the Best Trail Running Race Events in the Southwest, takes place as well as the multi-day Desert RATS 150 Kokopelli Stage Race take place. And to close out summer, the Mountain RATS Trail Runs and Mountain RATS Firebird 25 MTB event takes place in September.

Multi-sport athletes looking for more premier races and events in Colorado and the broader Rocky Mountains to add to their calendar, should check out our complete guide of Strambecco best-in-class rated events:


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