ATHLETE UPDATES

Please check back regularly as additional updates are continuously being added.

Please also check FacebookInstagram and Twitter for new updates and announcements.

Please carefully read through the items below as there are many important items you will need to know for race weekend.

 

Can I Transfer to a Different Distance?

Yes!


If you are currently registered in the event, you can transfer online to a shorter race distance for a transfer fee of $10 (to cover admin costs).  You can also transfer to a longer distance event for a transfer fee of $10 and the difference in entry fees.  Please note that if you are transferring to a shorter distance race, you will not be issued a refund for the difference in entry fee.  Please click on the transfer button/link to make the transfer.

 

Please note that you will need the correct race bib to start in the event you registered for unless you complete the transfer to receive a new bib. You will not be permitted to start in a different distance at the start line if you do not have the race bib/colour that matches that event distance (ie. if you registered for the Half Marathon and decide to run the 10K you must officially transfer to change your distance to start the 10k on race day). In summary, if you want to transfer to a different distance you must officially transfer HERE

 

The deadline for transfers to a different distance is Wednesday of race week at 9:00pm.

 

Schedule of Events

Please check back for schedule updates closer to the event - Schedule of Events HERE

Friendly Reminder - No Strollers or Pets

 

Banff National Park is a beautiful and unique location for a running event. However, this does present some challenges for the running course which is comprised of a combination of paved roads, paved and dirt trails, narrow sections, sharp turns and some curbs. For safety reasons, wheelchairs, baby joggers, strollers, Burleys, inline skates, bicycles, and pets can NOT be permitted on the course. Participants that bring any of the aforementioned items to the start line will not be permitted to start and will be disqualified. Thank you for understanding and respecting the safety of all participants in the event.

Participant Family and Friends Not Running? We need your help!

 

Participants, we are in need of some help for volunteers at the event. Banff is a very small community (only 7500 people) so drawing volunteers for the many events held here is very challenging – we could use the help of your friends and family if they would like to pitch in! This is a great opportunity for them to be part of the event while you are on your running journey. They will be helping all of the participants achieve their goals!

 

Volunteer and receive the following:

·  A commemorative Banff Marathon technical shirt

·  Lunch and snacks and a volunteer Bowling Party!

·  $3000 in draw prizes!

·  Satisfaction of helping many people achieve their goals

 

If any of your friends or family are available to help us out, we would greatly appreciate that. Please contact: volunteers@banffmarathon.com

Or click here to sign up for a shift: VOLUNTEER

Reminder: Race Bibs Not Transferable to Another Person

Selling or Giving Your Race Bib to Others is Strictly Prohibited

 

Due to the popularity of the event there is a demand for race bibs/registrations. A reminder to all that due to legal, logistical, timing, and safety requirements that race registrations are NOT transferable to another participant under any circumstances. Registration personnel will be asking for ID during race check in, and only registered runners are authorized to run the 10K, half marathon, or full marathon courses. Running with someone else’s bib can cause many problems (timing, safety, confusion, etc) that can affect many other participants in the event negatively so please do not do this. For example running with some else's race bib affects the race results and finishing places of everyone in the event (and can also affect award placings). Anyone who gives their bib to another runner is subject to penalties and/or future ban from competition. This policy is very commonplace among running events and your understanding is appreciated in this matter. 

Course Etiquette

 

Keeping to the Right on Trails

 

Runners should be aware that there are narrow sections on the Bow River Trails and the Paved Legacy trails. As you approach and pass other runners, please stay on the far right side of the path and don’t run two abreast in narrow sections. If you have headphones on you cannot hear other runners approaching from behind. Use caution when passing through the wildlife gates. You will stay on the right side of the trail/road unless otherwise directed.

 

Headphones on Course

 

Please note the Event prohibits the use of devices/headphones for the participant’s safety and the safety of those around them. There is no risk of disqualification for simple use, however, if a participant puts themselves or other participants at risk, directly or indirectly through the use of these items, the Event Organizers reserve the right to disqualify the participant. We highly recommend that you choose not to wear headphones due to the unique environment of a national park where being able to hear the natural environment around you and wildlife is important. Many participants have told us they were glad they did not wear their earphone so they could truly enjoy the peaceful beauty of the park and the mountain experience. 

 

Selfies and Other Photography/Video

 

You will be running on one of the most beautiful run courses on the planet so capturing the moment is very appealing. Taking "selfies", pictures or videos while running/moving is prohibited and could result in disqualification. If you would like to take a picture or video, please stop moving when safe (ie. no other runners or bike marshals/vehicles around you) and move to the side well out of the way of running path and other participants and support personnel.

Virtual Runners – Not Permitted in Live Race

 

We love our Virtual Runners, however they are not permitted on the course on race day.  All starters must have an official race bib for the live race. Anyone running without an official race bib for the live event will not be permitted to start and/or removed from the race.

Potential Route Hazards

 

Race Start – Do Not Enter Staging Until Directed

 

On Race morning, it is important to listen to the announcer and wait for him to announce your race distance to start staging for your race start. We ask that you please wait until your race is called up, to avoid collision with other distances starting/looping through the starting area and provide ample social distancing. Thanks!

Railway Tracks

 

Our scenic running course takes you through some of the most scenic land in the world…and also across some active railway tracks. We will know when trains are approaching and we will have race marshals on both sides of the track to halt the race accordingly. In order to ensure your timing does not get disrupted by train activity, we will place timing mats on either side of the tracks. The time needed to close the course at railway crossings will be deleted off of the final time of any patiently waiting athletes. (Don’t worry – this is not our race and no one was injured where this photo was taken!)

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Trail Narrowing at Start and Legacy Trail Connector

 

The course will start along Bow Ave, a closed road in the town of Banff, but it narrows and becomes a path where Bow Avenue intersects with Wolf Street. Here runners will keep left and stay on the Legacy Trail connector parallel to Norquay Road where the trail is still relatively narrow. Please be mindful of this narrowing onto the Bow Valley Path during the start of the race.

Spectators

 

During the race, only participants with a race bib will be allowed on Vermilion Lakes Road, the Legacy Trail and the Bow Valley Parkway. Please tell your friends and family not to drive, cycle or walk to these areas. These areas can be narrow and environmentally sensitive so for the safety of everyone please let everyone know not to travel to these sections of the course as they will be denied entry (tell them to sign up for the run next year to gain access!). The runners are best viewed in town as they start the run and before the finish. There are many great cheering spots here and also many fun things to do in Banff for your family members while they await your return.

 

If you want the best cheering spot on course, register as a course marshal volunteer and you’ll be right on course to cheer your family and friends on! Email volunteers@banffmarathon.com to register as a course marshal!

Or click here to sign up for a shift: VOLUNTEER

Do you have your Parks Pass?

 

If you’re entering Banff National Park by personal vehicle, a park pass is required. We suggest purchasing your National Park Pass online prior to arrival for express entry into the park.

Alternate Route

 

The safety of our athletes and minimizing impact on the Banff wildlife and wilderness is our paramount priority. In the event of wildlife activity along our primary course, we have an alternate route prepared. We encourage everyone to check the website frequently as the race day approaches. Route updates and announcements will be posted HERE

Treat Yourself to the VIP Experience

 

Do it right and treat yourself to the VIP Experience at the Banff Marathon! The packages and passes are limited and will be sold out soon so please reserve yours now.

 

The VIP Experience Package includes all of the following benefits:

 

- Express race package pickup service

- Exclusive Finish Line Lounge adjacent to finish line with food and beverage

- Exclusive Bathroom Area Access at the Start/Finish Area

- Dedicated Event Day Bag Check

- Post Race Massage by certified massage therapists (with priority check-in)

- Sport Bag with exclusive sponsor gifts

- Commemorative Banff Marathon Lanyard

Only $95.00 for all of this! (does not include entry fee)

 

Don’t need all of the VIP Benefits? VIP Lounge Passes are also available for participants, friends and family members. The VIP Lounge is the perfect place for you to relax after your race or for friends and family to enjoy the race. The VIP Lounge will be directly adjacent to the finish line with the best seats in the house. The pass will also include complimentary food and beverage and exclusive bathroom area access.

VIP Lounge Pass: $49.00

 

Click below to make your experience even more memorable...

 

CLICK FOR VIP PACKAGE

 

CLICK FOR LOUNGE PASS

Wildlife Safety and Bear Spray

 

Some participants have inquired about carrying bear spray during the event. Due to the unique setting of the run taking place in a National Park setting, wildlife activity is abundant. The course is well monitored by Parks Canada, race officials, EMS and volunteers however interaction with wildlife is always possible. Carrying bear spray is permitted while running but please educate yourself regarding the instructions and proper care of the bear spray canisters. Carrying bear spray is not mandatory in this event however if you feel uncomfortable in the natural park setting it is recommended that you consider running with bear spray. In the essence of safety, our recommendations are as follows:

 

Marathon Participants: Highly Recommend

Half Marathon Participant: Recommend

10K Participants: Optional

 

Runners carrying bear spray in the mountains is very common and many of the bear spray canisters are smaller and designed with clips and belts for active people. Strides Running Store will have these available at the Health and Fitness Expo. They can also be purchased at many local stores in Banff but if you are going to carry one, you may want to acquire a canister and holster before you arrive in Banff.

 

Here are some good resources:

Safe Travel in Bear Country

Bear Spray Information

How to Use Bear Spray Video

How to Stay Safe Around Carnivore

Wildlife Protocol

 

Due to the unique character of Banff National Park, a wildlife interaction, although unlikely, could occur on the race route. The following are some resources you should review and may find helpful:

 

Wildlife Response Plan:

There are three different scenario responses, “Green”, “Yellow” and “Red”: Flags will be present at each aid station located along the run route - please be aware what each flag colour represents in order to proceed through the run with proper precaution. 

 

Green or No Flag” – No wildlife concerns currently along the marathon route, or section of that route. Code green means wildlife are not present or wildlife have passed through the area and are greater than 100 m away and moving further away. 

 

Yellow” – Wildlife are present in the area but there is a low risk of direct conflict between the wildlife and the event participants/staff. The marathon may continue along the planned route, but the participants are to be warned of wildlife sighting and to use caution in the area, potentially having to slow down, stop or turn around. The participants will be re-warned that they must keep 100 m from all carnivores and (if in spring calving season) female elk, and 30 m from all other ungulates at all times. Code yellow means wildlife are within the area, >100 m from the road but not moving out of the area, and are a species of higher potential for concern – i.e. a grizzly bear, wolf, or female elk who may be hiding a calf nearby. 

 

Red” – Wildlife are present in the event area and the risk of human-wildlife conflict is deemed by the Parks Canada RMO as being high if the marathon continues along the planned route. Participants may be rerouted, turned-around, or proceed on Plan B route depending on the timing of the code "red". Prior to race start, the maximum wait time for a code red scenario is one hour.

 

*Please follow all instructions as directed by Banff Marathon Staff, Volunteers, and Parks Canada Employees

Green Initiatives - Do Your Part

 

Banff Marathon - The Greenest Marathon on the Planet

 

Did you know that the Banff Marathon is the world-leader in Sustainability? Each year we divert nearly all waste from the landfill, offset all greenhouse gasses and use green power - grid energy that is certified from renewable sources! We want to keep these and our other sustainability programs thriving. Please help! We encourage you to participate in as many of the Sustainability Programs as possible – a great start is to travel to the Banff Marathon with only items that can be recycled easily and reduce your waste.

Please read below for a few more…

GATORADE

Please drink all of the Gatorade in your cup. If you have any leftover Gatorade in your cup that you cannot drink, please DO NOT dump it on the ground, it must be dumped into the waste bins. Bears love sweet sticky stuff so this is an attractant and we want to keep our Aid Station Volunteers safe!

WASTE ON COURSE

***Important, please read…

 

During the run, ALL waste must be deposited at the nearest Aid Station. Participants CANNOT drop any waste (cups, gels, sponges, wrappers etc.) anywhere along the course (including KM markers or any other spots – even if you believe it will be found by organizers or see that others have done it). Aid Stations are located at least every 2-3km, and disposal bins will be located for you to drop your garbage. Any participant leaving waste along the course other than at the designated aid stations will be immediately disqualified and asked to leave the course.  This is very important for wildlife protection and the safety of the participants and will be patrolled by monitors on bicycles and vehicles. Please remember that Littering in a National Park is an offence and can be fined under the National Parks Act, but more importantly lets all respect the environment and opportunity to run in this special place. Thank you.

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BYOB:

BRING YOUR OWN WATER BOTTLE

 

Rather than just using the cups we will provide along the route, athletes are encouraged to bring their own water bottles on race day. There will be 10 aid stations along the marathon route and volunteers are happy to assist with refilling bottles. It is one of the ways athletes can take an active role in helping make the Banff Marathon the Greenest Marathon on the planet!

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FREE TRANSPORTATION! 

 

ROAM AROUND BANFF FOR FREE

 

The Bow Valley Regional Transit Service is providing free public transit for race participants and their families on Friday to Sunday on race weekend. We invite all of our athletes and their families to take advantage of this great offer to help reduce parking congestion in Banff and to keep our event as green as possible. Just be sure to show the bus driver your race bib to take advantage of this special offer.

 

Roam buses will take you to Banff must-sees such as the Banff Springs Hotel, the Cave and Basin, the Banff Gondola, Tunnel Mountain, and many stops throughout the town of Banff – and even Canmore! You can see the bus routes and schedules HERE

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FREE Kids Run – Bring your Family to Run!

 

Saturday, June 17th

Registration: Health and Fitness Expo: Friday 4pm-7pm, Saturday 9am-11am

Kids Race Site: 12noon-1:15pm, Run Start: 1:30pm

Cost: FREE

More Info HERE

 

The Banff Marathon is pleased to offer the free Kids Run to all kids between the ages of 3 and 12 years old. The run will offer different distances for different age groups.  Each participant will receive a Goodie Bag and a commemorative Finishers Medal. This family-friendly fun run is being offered for free to all kids as part of the Banff Marathon festivities! 

 

3 Categories:

500m - ages 3-5

750m - ages 6-8

1km - ages 9-12

10K – New Route and Start Time!

 

The Banff Marathon is excited to announce that the new 10K course will follow the same route as the Half Marathon and Marathon courses. This route will take 10K participants out on to the spectacular Vermilion Lakes Road with an “out and back” configuration turning back at the second Aid Station (toward the end of Vermilion Lakes Road). The return route will travel back to the starting area, then proceed directly on to Caribou Street and turn on to Bear Street for the finish (there will be no loops in the Banff townsite area around the river and bridges).

 

Please note the new start time: 9:45am

Marathon and Half Marathon Course Updates

The start of the Marathon and Half Marathon courses will remain the same as previous years. The in-town loop around the river trails and bridges at the end of the route has been eliminated from all of the courses and will affect the routes as follows:

 

Marathon – A short internal loop has been added at the Marathon turnaround point on the Bow Valley Parkway. This loop is approximately 3km (1.5km in each direction looping around the Aid Station at Sawback Viewpoint) and must be completed before the return journey back to Banff.

 

Half Marathon – The Half Marathon turnaround point on the Bow Valley Parkway has been extended to just past the 4th Aid Station at Backswamp Viewpoint (before the split in the road).

 

These areas will be clearly marked so please pay attention to the signs and marshals and you will have no trouble staying on course. If in doubt, don’t be afraid to ask a marshal on the course.

For more information visit the “ROUTE” page HERE

Go the Extra Mile! Support the Banff YWCA

 

It’s not too late! Join the pledge program for the official charity of the Banff Marathon and give back to the communities of Banff and the Bow Valley – even a few pledges will make a big difference. You will also be rewarded with some great prizes as you reach different fundraising levels. Join Team YWCA - check it out HERE

Race Bib Must Be Yours and Visible

 

At the beginning of the race start, please make sure your race bib can be seen. The race officials must be able to see your race bib otherwise you will be stopped. Anyone running without a race bib will be removed from the race immediately. 

Virtual Event Bag – Please Read!

 

Check out what's waiting for you inside the Virtual Event Bag! There is race information and amazing deals for the weekend, valuable coupons and fun activities for you and your family to check out! You will receive the Virtual Event Bag via email - watch for it in your inbox! 

#BANFFMARATHON Contest

 

Share your AMAZING BANFF MARATHON photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for a chance to win amazing prizes!

 

How to enter: 

1. Post a photo on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter from the Banff Marathon race weekend

2. Use the #banffmarathon or tag @banffmarathon 

 

Enter by June 30th, 2023!

Banff Marathon Commemorative Gear

 

Make sure to visit the Banff Marathon Merchandise Tent on-site. There will be popular limited-edition shirts, campfire blankets, toques, ceramic mugs, sport packs and much more at great prices!

Awards

The Banff Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K Awards are virtual!

 

If you finished in the Top 3 in your age group, check the post race e-mail newsletter you will receive in the week after the race, for instructions on how you can have your podium medal sent to you.

Parks Interpretive Contest

The Banff Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K take place in a very special place, Banff National Park. As such, Banff National Park stewardship is a very important element of the event. The entire event is themed after the Bow Valley and Banff National Park and there are many opportunities to learn more about the Park throughout the event.  Look out for social media features, newsletter pieces, Park-themed aid stations along the route and other event-weekend fun facts on Banff National Park – it could be worth your while with some great prizes to be won after the event.

PARKING

 

Free Roam Transit for Participants, Families and Volunteers!

Banff can be very congested with limited parking so utilizing the Roam Transit system, carpooling, or traveling by foot or bike is heavily recommended to get to the Expo and race start. Parking will NOT be available on or near the Expo on Bear Street (or for dropping participants off for Race Package Pick-up or Race Morning) so we highly recommend that you:

 

  • Utilize the FREE Roam Transit (Friday to Sunday)

  • Run or walk to the Expo / Race Expo and Start Area

  • Car Pool

  • Utilize Hotel Shuttles

  • Park in the Train Station Parking Lot – Free and only a few minute walk to Bear Street / Bow Ave Race Start

 

This is also the best choice for our commitment to sustainability!

 

Information on parking can be found HERE.

 

*Please note that Bow Ave parking will also not be available on race day (Bow Ave is part of the run course!)