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Race Preview: 2019 Mt. Tabor Tar ‘n’ Trail 5K and 10K

Friends of Mt. Tabor Park are hosting a 5K run/walk and 10K run through the picturesque trails on Portland’s dormant volcano, Mt. Tabor.  The race is a fundraising event to benefit the Friends of Mt. Tabor Park who help keep this wonderland a safe, beautiful and fun place to visit.  If you haven’t been to Mt. Tabor Park or looking for a fun challenge, this event is for you!  Registration is very budget-friendly with a mere $15 for the 5K (unless you are under the age of 12, the price is $5) and the 10K is $25.  So bring your friends, family or “running family” and enjoy a hilly course featuring both paved road and dirt trail, hence the title “Tar ‘n’ Trail”.

The park roads will not be closed to traffic, bicycles or others who came to enjoy the park, so please be considerate, safe and cross intersections carefully (and only when it is safe to do so). Parking may be a little limited, so team up with your running buddies and carpool.  There are parking lots available within the park and residential parking is available as well (just don’t block anyone’s driveway).

5K course (map available here) and the 10K course (map available here) will both start near the park entrance at 69th and Yamhill.  After participants head south for a downhill portion, both distances will turn left at the north gate.  Continue uphill toward the parking lot, and 5K participants will be directed to pass the basketball court and onto the entrance of the Blue Trail (located across from the picnic area).  The 5K will feature a variety of terrains from paved roads, concrete paths and wooded trails and stairs!  That’s right, 95 steps to be exact, so be prepared to get a little cross training in as well.  Views should promise to be beautiful, if not completely stunning as fall weather begins to change the trees.  The 5K will circle each of the three reservoirs and finish at the top of the mountain, our inner-city volcano.

The 10K, starting similarly, will be directed past the picnic area (unlike the 5K) and enter the Red Trail and be treated with views of downtown Portland and views of Mt. Hood.  After circling the mountain and entering the main parking lot area, volunteers will direct runners to the Green Trail for a clockwise loop around the mountain.  This isn’t just a stroll in the woods!  Check out the elevation loss and gain for the 10K course:

After exiting the wooded area on the Green Trail, participants will enter back out to the road.  Please, this is so important, please stay to the gravel path on the left side of the road.   As you run down hill, check out the view!  The Green Trail will continue between the two large reservoirs and more opportunities to see some beautiful views.  Water and electrolytes are available as participants enter into the main parking lot area.  Runners will be directed from the parking area to the correct trail to continue their journey to the blue trail and one final loop of the mountain and enjoying the rugged terrain of some asphalt, some concrete path and those 95 steps making up a staircase.  Save something in your gas tank for that last mile!

Participants will receive race bib for this challenging, fun race as well as a chance for valuable prizes from event sponsors that will be raffled off.

Race Details:
When:  Sunday, September 29th
8:00am- race day check-in (located at the parking lot near the amphitheater and basketball courts), bib pick up or race day registration begins (cash or check only on day of race registrations)
8:45am- Walking to the start of the race gate (location slightly different for each distance)
9:00am- 10K racers are off and running
9:05am- 5K runners and walkers are off on their adventure
Post race, stay and mingle with other participants and enjoy some food donated by New Seasons.

Where:  Mt. Tabor Park

Registration: Online here

  • $25 for 10K race
  • $15 for 5K race
  • $5 for 5K participants under 12 years of age
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About Matt Rasmussen (1405 Articles)
Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching the Olympics, sampling craft beers, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010. Matt joined the Run Oregon team in October 2011, and since then he has spearheaded the blog’s efforts to cover product reviews, news about businesses related to running, and running events in the Willamette Valley.

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