Nestled in the heart of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, the Leadville Trail 10K, produced by Life Time Events, offers an extraordinary opportunity for trail running enthusiasts to experience the magic of the Leadville Race Series in a less intimidating event, covering the first and final sections of the iconic Leadville Trail 100 Run. The Leadville Trail 100 Run is the culminating event of the Leadville Race Series Run, a Grand Slam of Ultra-Running event, and one of the Best Trail Running Events in the Rockies. The 10k takes place the day after the infamous Leadville Trail 100 MTB, one of the Best Mountain Bike Events in Colorado and the Rockies and is a great way to warm up for the 100-mile run, the “Race Across the Sky,” which takes place the following weekend.
Event & Course Info
The Leadville 10K Run kicks off at 9am and traverses the very same gravel roads that have become legendary in the running world, forming a portion of the Leadville Trail 100 Run course and delivering a smaller taste of the rugged terrain, challenging elevations and unforgiving landscapes featured on the ultramarathon course.
The course, which is an out-and-back route, showcases the dynamic nature of Leadville’s trails and covers the first and final 3.1 miles of the Race Across the Sky. From paved roads to dirt paths, runners will experience a diverse blend of surfaces that demand adaptability and skill. Spanning a total of 6.2 miles, the course boasts an elevation gain of 465 feet. The journey begins at 9,767 feet above sea level, and the race’s zenith reaches an impressive 10,154 feet. This elevation change adds an extra layer of challenge, testing the lungs and legs of participants. Runners should anticipate the presence of one aid station at the turnaround point, a welcome respite for refueling and rehydrating before the return journey.
After the race, awards are distributed for overall gender and age group top finishers. The ceremony, scheduled for 11:30 am, serves as a celebration of personal achievements and a testament to the strength of the trail running community. It’s a weekend where runners and bikers alike join in Leadville to celebrate health, fitness, and the great outdoors.
Area Accommodations & Things to Do
A visit to Leadville, CO, is an opportunity to explore history. Leadville has six local museums, and the Museum Passport is available to share among friends and family to tour the historic attractions any time during race season, Memorial Day through Labor Day. Hiking, cycling, and water sports at Twin Lakes are popular outdoor activities to enjoy in the area while in town, or if you extend your weekend, drive over beautiful Independence Pass to enjoy a visit to Aspen.
Favorite restaurants among locals and tourists in Leadville are Treeline Kitchen, the Golden Burro, and High Mountain Pies. For lodging, participants can stay at area hotels, bed & breakfasts, home rentals, cabins, and campgrounds. Also, remember that the gorgeous Copper Mountain Resort is close-by and open for summer starting in early June and easy camping is available at Colorado Mountain College.
Outdoor loving friends and family who are supporting their athletes in Leadville, will be impressed with the amount of activities there are to enjoy in the area’s stunning mountainous landscape. It is a hiking paradise, where those looking to bag come iconic peaks can consider tackling Mount Elbert and Mount Massive, two “Fourteeners” (peaks above 14,000 feet) offer not only breathtaking panoramic views but also a sense of accomplishment as you conquer their summits.
Mountain bikers that aren’t quite up for the 100 mile race, will enjoy Leadville’s scenic cross-country paths and heart-pounding downhill runs, such as the Mineral Belt Trail, a 12.6-mile loop that winds through historic mining sites and offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. For those seeking more adrenaline, the nearby Copper Mountain Bike Park provides gravity-fed trails, jumps, and features for an exhilarating downhill experience.
Finally, Leadville’s pristine lakes, rivers, and streams make it a haven for fly fishing enthusiasts. With its elevation and abundant natural water sources, the area offers unique opportunities for anglers to test their skills. Turquoise Lake, located just outside of Leadville, is a popular spot for fishing, known for its rainbow, brown, and lake trout. The Arkansas River, renowned for its gold medal fishing waters, is also within reach, offering the chance to catch trout amidst stunning alpine scenery. The summer months provide ideal conditions for fly fishing, with clear waters and ample insect hatches.
The Leadville Race Series started in 1983 with just a single race through the Rocky Mountains. Produced by Life Time Events, it has now expanded in the United States with multiple running and biking events. For trail running, the series includes the following summer events: Leadville Trail 100 Run, Austin Rattler Run, Leadville Trail Marathon & Heavy Half, Silver Rush 5 Run, and Leadville Trail 10K. Due to popularity and participant demand, the challenging series also invites runners to a 3-day Leadville Trail 100 Run Camp. It is a long weekend of getting to know your fellow racers through intense training with expert runners and celebrating the amazing scenery of the Rocky Mountains with great food and trails. Leadville Race Series MTB also has many mountain biking events throughout the summer and fall for those also interested in mountain biking.