Trail Running Camps and Retreats
Some people find time to trail run and train even on their vacations. Let’s take that dedication to the next level with an unforgettable traincation. That’s right. Run camps aren’t just for high school cross country teams. Join fellow trail running enthusiasts at any of these top rated adult running camps - all based in the United States.
Trail Running Escapes - Backbone Trail
- Where: Malibu, California
- When: March 11-14, 2022
Trail Running Escapes offers a popular run camp in the Red Rocks of Sedona, Arizona; but we’re even more pumped about their guided traverse across the Backbone Trail in the Santa Monica Mountains. What better way to take in the California sun?
The 4-day, fully supported trail running camp runs about 17 miles a day (4 or 5 hours) through four California State Parks: Will Rogers State Historic Park, Topanga State Park, Malibu Creek State Park, and Point Mugu State Park.
Although their runs are hosted by certified running coaches, Trail Running Escapes camps are NOT "coaching" camps. They bring together trail runners from across the nation to share in the love of challenging trail runs in beautiful settings.
Learn more about Trail Running Escapes - Backbone Trail.
Desert Highlights Trail Running Camp
- Where: Palisade, Colorado
- When: March 24-27, 2022
The team from Becoming Ultra hosts a beautiful but challenging run retreat for 4 days and 3 nights in the Western Colorado desert! Explore trails through vast canyons, beneath towering monoliths, hidden arches and a sweeping landscape that goes on for miles. Local trail and ultra running coaches will guide you through area hot spots including Colorado National Monument, Fruita, Loma and the Grand Mesa before relaxing each night at the enchanting Wine Country Inn in Palisade, Colorado.
Learn more about Desert Highlights Trail Running Camp.
Southwest Colorado Running Retreat
- Where: Telluride and Ouray, Colorado
- When: August 22-28, 2022
The Telluride Mountain Run is a summer favorite for experienced and aspiring mountain trail runners. However, unless you’re regularly running these altitudes of over 13,000 ft, you’ll need time to acclimate. The Southwest Colorado Running Retreat precedes the race and is designed to help you do just that. Experience the amazing San Juan Mountains of Southwest Colorado as you acclimatize for the race, to which entry is covered in retreat expenses.
Unlike the aforementioned Backbone Trail retreat, this trip is for everyone. You don’t have to be an experienced trail runner to enjoy this camp; although, participating in the race isn’t recommended for newcomers. The philosophy here is “run when I can; hike when I can’t,” while enjoying beautiful scenery throughout.
Learn more about Southwest Colorado Running Retreat.
Rob Krar Ultra Camps
- Where: Flagstaff, Arizona
- When: Summer and Winter
For many trail runners, it’s not just about the experience or the locations. It’s also about the people who share your love for the trails. So, running and learning side-by-side with two-time Ultra Runner of the Year, Rob Krar, is an experience most participants will never forget. Not only does the perennial winner of Western States, Leadville, and Run Rabbit Run guide campers through a variety of terrains, distances and altitudes in Flagstaff/Sedona, Arizona. He and his wife, Christina, open their home to camp guests for the most delicious health-conscious meals.
You DO NOT need to be advanced competitive runners to attend a Rob Krar Ultra Camp. In fact, both the winter and (longer) summer camps are designed for and best experienced by beginner to intermediate experience levels with past participants ranging from their early 20s to late 60s.
Learn more about Rob Krar Ultra Camps.
Western States Training Runs
- Where: Olympic Valley, California
- When: Memorial Weekend
If you have any aspirations to run the Western States Endurance Run, the world’s oldest 100 mile trail race, you should definitely participate in the Western States Training Camp to become acquainted with the last 70 miles of the actual race course.
All training sessions are during the day, but you’ll receive the advantage of familiarizing yourself with portions of the course that most racers will only experience at night.
Unlike the exclusive WSER, the training camp requires neither prequalification nor lottery. Just sign up, and enjoy three days of fully supported 20-30 mile runs. There will be aid stations throughout - often staffed by Western States winners and legends.
Learn more about Western States Training Runs.
Running & Mindfulness Retreats
- Where: Boulder, CO
- When: October (2022 dates not yet posted)
There is no surprise that half of the camps on this list are hosted in mesmerizing Colorado; and Boulder, CO, embodies the spirit of ultra trail running as well as anywhere. It’s also the home for Run Mindful Retreats hosted by professional Ultra Runner Timothy Olson and his wife, Krista. The Olsons invite guests to embrace their passion for running and nature. Their retreats also teach how to infuse meditation and mindfulness into your runs and everyday life.
Participants will explore beautiful trails in and around Boulder, with options to visit Green Mountain, Mount Sanitas, Bear Peak, South Boulder Peak, Chautauqua Park, The Flatirons, and/or Mesa Trail.
This is another one of those “good runs with good people” experiences that you’ll want to journal or blog about when you’re done.
Learn more about Running & Mindfulness Retreats.
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