Race Preview: 2016 Oregon Marathon and Half Marathon (Uberthons)

After a two year absence during which it concentrated on a half marathon series, Uberthons is bringing a full marathon back to its schedule on July 16. And it will be held on the same course that as the inaugural Oregon Marathon in 2013, mostly along the Banks-Vernonia Trail. Those who ran this route three years ago probably remember most that the race took place during such a heavy deluge of rain that it was known informally as the Typhoonathon. But the other thing to remember about it is that the back half of it is fast .... That's because there's about a 7 mile stretch starting from the midpoint that's all downhill, with the last 6 miles being flat. Even better, if you run the half marathon, you start at the midpoint of the full marathon, meaning you get the benefit of that downhill coasting without having to ante up for the uphill climb in the first half!

Other key points:

  • Both the full and half marathons are point-to-point, not loops. Shuttle buses will take runners from the parking area to the starting points of the respective races. (Make sure you get on the right bus!) The last bus leaves at 6 am!
  • There will be an early bird start at 6:30 am for the full marathon, as well as a regular 7 am start.
  • Bag check will be available; on the shuttle bus, you will be able to get a plastic bag, on which you will write your bib number.
  • There will be water/aid stations approximately every 2 miles on the course. In addition to cold water, there will be ice and electrolytes. Four of the 13 stations will have iced towels, and three of the stations will have medical personnel.
  • Both events will have pacing teams.
  • All finishers will get a belt buckle medal as well as the race tech shirt. For age/gender group winners (1st, 2d, 3d), there will be gold, silver, or bronze pins. For overall winners (1st, 2d, 3d) and masters 45+ (1st, 2d, 3d), there will be award medals. And the winners of the 65+ division will also get award medals.
  • Post-race food will be available, including fruit and ice cream, plus breakfast.

I ran this half marathon in 2013; it was my first half marathon ever. It’s a measure of how fast this course is that that race remains my half PR …. As fellow Run Oregon blogger Brian Bernier noted in his 2013 recap (linked above), 17 runners managed to qualify for the following Boston Marathon despite the rainy conditions. I can’t speak to the full marathon course, but the second half was sublimely scenic, at least the parts in the forest.


Oregon Marathon and Half Marathon (Banks, OR)

When: July 16, 2016, at 7 a.m. (6:30 a.m. for early bird marathon start)

Where: Banks-Vernonia; park at Banks High School, 13050 NW Main Street, Banks, OR 97106

Register: Online here ($90 for full marathon; $75 for half marathon; both will also add a small processing fee)

Pre-race packet pickup: July 14, 2016, from 4 pm to 8 pm at Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, 6100 SW Meadows Road, Lake Oswego, OR 97035


Disclosure: I’m a 2016 Uberthons Ambassador.


About Tung Yin (278 Articles)
Law prof by day, runner all the time. Got off the couch in January 2011 and have been obsessed with running ever since.
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