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Race Dates

2017: Saturday, January 7, 2017
2016: Saturday, January 9, 2016

Course Information

Profile: Very Hilly
Type: Out and Back
Surface: Trail
Certified?: No

Race Day Weather

Mean Temp.: 40°F (4°C)
Average High: 52°F (11°C)
Average Low: 28° F (-2°C)

PR Score & Course Score

PR Score: N/A
Course Score: N/A

Race Size

2016: 64 Finishers
2015: 27 Finishers
2014: 47 Finishers

BQ Percentages

2016: N/A
2015: N/A
2014: N/A

Miscellaneous Information

Pace Groups?: No

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Course Description

If you are not an experienced trail- or ultra-runner (or adventure racer), we happily invite you to one of the other UTS runs, BUT NOT THIS ONE. This is a difficult event on a difficult trail that presents many opportunities for one to get lost, injured, exhausted, or incapacitated--with sparse access for rescue. The course is an out and back course. You first run almost 3 miles on roads - paved and gravel up to the start of the trail. Then you enter the Athens-Big Fork Trail - White Blazes. Follow the trail over 8 mountains. You pop out of the trail and need to go about a half mile down the gravel road to get your full 13.1. Then you turn around and go back. It's that easy!

Marathon Rankings

The Athens Big-Fork Trail Marathon was the 597th largest marathon in the U.S. last year and was the 521st largest in 2014.

Elevation Chart

Max Elevation: 2023 feet (616m)
Min Elevation: 1028 feet (313m)

No course elevation available at this time.

Ratings & Reviews for the Athens Big-Fork Trail Marathon

5 Stars from 1 Reviews

review of 2013 Athens Big-Fork Trail Marathon.   

5 / 5 Stars


Toughest marathon in the south. Take your BEST marathon time and double it. 4:22 is course record. Most difficult marathon I have ever heard of much less run. Amazing feeling of accomplishment just to finish. 5 total aid stations on the out and back wilderness trail course. No cell coverage. Beautiful mountain views if you are not too exhausted to lift your head. Sponsored by Arkansas Ultra Running Association with aid station assistance from TATUR (Tulsa Area Trail and Ultra Runners). Course is up and over mountains with minimal switch backs. No entry fee but most folks donate $10-20 to the community center.

Race Tips

MOST runners end up bloody, lost and wet. For HARD CORE trail runners only. More ascent than Pikes Peak Marathon (8,500+). Eight mountains, few creeks and a river then you turn around and come back. Carry water. Gaiters are helpful. Your feet will get wet in the river at least and maybe a few creeks. http://www.athensbigforkmarathon.com/readme.aspx

Logistical Tips (Hotels, Restaurants, Parking, Discounts, etc.)

The "community" of Big Fork AR can be difficult to find but if you drive slowly enough down the highway, the start line is the only place with more than two cars. No bathrooms on the course and arrive early before the community center bathroom clogs up as it does from overuse every year.

Finish Time Equivalent

If you ran the New York City Marathon in 3:47:00, what would your time in the Boston Marathon be?

See how your race times would compare on other marathon courses using the Marathon Time Converter Tool.