The Autumn River Run courses for the 5K, Half-Marathon and Marathon feature an expansive view of the North Platte Trails Network and the unique tunnels, underpasses and overpasses featured throughout the trail system.
This year’s race will begin and end at the North Platte Recreation Center, located at 1300 McDonald Road in North Platte. Returning athletes, please take note of the changes to this year’s course. We’ve made major updates to our routes for all three distances, changes designed to enhance your race experience and ensure the safety of our participants.
Marathon & Half-Marathon Course
Beginning at the start line in the Rec Center parking lot, athletes will leave the parking lot and turn left on to McDonald Rd. In just a few feet, the street will curve, becoming Leota Street. You will run west on Leota St. for approximately one half mile. You will merge left onto Buffalo Bill Trail, which is paved trail.
Running south, you will continue to the end of Buffalo Bill Trail and turn left on State Farm Rd. This short section is NOT trail, but the side of State Farm Rd. A running lane will be coned off, but please be aware the road is open. Near Echo Drive, you will be directed to cross State Farm Rd to the south and get on State Farm Trail. This is a paved and asphalt section. Your route will continue on the trail alongside State Farm Rd. You will turn into the University of Nebraska Research Center or “State Farm” at Tree Lane. The course then turns east at the end of Tree Lane in the farm and passes through a tunnel under Highway 83. You will emerge from the tunnel and immediately turn left (north) and continue to follow the paved State Farm Trail to its end. You will be directed to cross State Farm Rd to the trailhead for the NPPD Trail.
This section of trail is gravel. You will cross Walker Rd where the trail once again becomes paved. You will continue north to Iron Horse Park and its lovely little lake, where you will merge onto an asphalt section of trail. The turn-around will be located on this path, 6.55 miles from the start. Athletes will return, following the same route. Half-marathoners will get their tenth of a mile by merging onto Centennial Trail for just a short distance, turning around to come back to the finish line.
The marathon route will be two loops of the same course, with the additional two-tenths of a mile on Centennial Trail. Our two-loop route has been designed to keep the half and full marathoners closer together. With our long time limit, our participants could find themselves alone for long stretches, and like our previous route, using “tentacles,” the loops will keep athletes more engaged with each other and our volunteers. Cheerleaders give us courage! The route will also be spectator friendly.
There will be 6 aid stations, so the half-marathoners will visit those twice, for a total of 12 potential stops and the full marathoners will see those stations four times, for a total of 24 opportunities at an aid station. That’s an aid station nearly every mile! The loop route also allows for more frequent opportunities at the port-a-potties.
Beginning at the start line in the Rec Center parking lot, athletes will leave the parking lot and turn left on to McDonald Rd. In just a few feet, you will be directed on to the trailhead for Centennial Trail. This is a fully paved trail. This section of trail is very picturesque, running alongside the winding South Platte River. You will continue to follow the trail as it crosses over the South Platte River bridge, looping under Highway 83, all the way to its end near the Lincoln County Visitors Bureau Welcome Center. You will turn around at the Welcome Center and return to the finish line at the Rec Center. There will be one aid station at the turn around.