This net downhill, point-to-point Yakima Canyon Marathon course is exceptionally scenic as it offers spectacular views of the Yakima River Canyon.
The course starts on Canyon Road .2 mile south of the Berry Road intersection in Ellensburg, Washington. After two loops, it proceeds directly south to the canyon. There are two major hills and many curves as the course follows the Yakima River downstream on the asphalt surfaced highway. The long downhill just before the finish in rural Selah, Washington, near the canyon’s mouth contributes to the net elevation loss of a few hundred feet as it brings the runners to the Yakima Valley orchard and ranch country.
Although the marathon course loses about 250 feet from the start to mile 22. It quickly gains the elevation back on the large hill that ends near mile 23. The course then loses all the elevation from that hill and more to the finish. There is also a sizable hill when you leave he river near mile 14.
The Yakima River Canyon Marathon was the 257th largest marathon in the U.S. last year and was the 230th largest in 2015.
This year 6.9% of finishers qualified for the Boston Marathon and 10.6% of runners qualified for Boston in 2016.
This gives the Yakima River Canyon Marathon the 187th highest percentage of Boston Marathon qualifiers in the U.S. last year and the 109th highest percentage so far in 2017.
Its Course Score of 99.48 ranks it as the 88th fastest marathon course in the U.S. and the 13th fastest course in Washington.
The typical race time temperature and humidity levels are within the ideal range for optimal marathon performance. This, coupled with the Course Score, gives the Yakima River Canyon Marathon a PR Score of 99.48. This PR Score ranks it as the 58th fastest marathon in the U.S. and the 12th fastest in Washington.
Learn more about PR Scores and Course Scores on the FAQ page.