Welcome to the 51st Annual Chuckanut Footrace!
Saturday, July 8, 2017 at 9:00am
Day of Race Registration
Day of race registration is available for 2017. The cost is $35 for non members and $5 for GBRC members.
This point-to-point, seven-mile trail race starts at Marine Park in south Bellingham and finishes at Larrabee State Park, the oldest state park in Washington. The course follows the legendary Interurban Trail, which threads through the Chuckanut Mountains and features gorgeous views of Chuckanut Bay and the San Juan Islands. View the course map here. Busses will take runners back to the finish line and will leave with regularity.
The finish-line party at Larrabee State Park will include live music, food, and drink. Age-group awards will be given, three deep in each five-year category. Top three male and female finishers will also be recognized.
The entry fees for the chip-timed race for runners or walkers is $30 in early online registration and $35 on day of race registration. GBRC members can run this race at no charge as part of their membership, if they choose to register early online. GBRC members pay $5 for day of race registration. There is an optional race shirt available. Shirts must be purchased with race registration. They will not be for sale day of race. There is an additional park usage fee of $1.25. For non GBRC members, this charge is included in the $35 race fee. GBRC members will be asked to make a donation on the day of race at the registration area to go towards the park usage fee.
Race shirts will be available for purchase with online registration and the deadline to order is June 25th. Available in gender specific sizes XS-XXL and cost $18.
Both online registration and day of race registration are available. There is a cap of 1300 runners, so plan on registering online early to ensure an entry. If the 1300 cap is reached prior to race day, no day of race registration will be offered.
Race Bib and Chip Pick-Up
Early packet pickup will be available at Aslan Brewing on Friday, July 7th between 3:00-7:00pm. They have generously made their closed patio available for runners to socialize and enjoy a pre-race party during this time. Aslan Brewing address is 1330 N Forest St, Bellingham, WA 98225. Day of race packet pickup will be at Marine Park. See schedule and directions below.
Race Day Schedule:
7:00–8:30am: Race bib and chip pick-up and day of race registration at Marine Park in Fairhaven (directions below).
9:00am: Race start at Marine Park
9:30am: Party and music start at Larrabee State Park
10:00am: Award announcements start at Larrabee State Park
Directions to Start
To get to Marine Park, where the race starts, take Interstate 5, exit 250 West, and follow signs for the Bellingham Cruise Terminal and Alaska Ferry.
200 Harris Avenue
Bellingham, WA 98225
Parking and Shuttle
Because of extremely limited space at Larrabee, there is no parking at the finish. Racers: you can run or walk the course, then hop a shuttle bus to return to your vehicle at the start. Spectators: you can cheer racers at the start, then ride the shuttle to the finish and back again to your vehicle at the start. This year, we will be continuing the “green” award for those runners who choose to walk or run back to Fairhaven! Help us go green by cutting down on the bus transportation to and from Larrabee!
Help Us Go Green!
We want to help lead the way toward “environmentally greener” events, where we reduce waste, reuse, and recycle. Here are ways we can work together:
- We eliminated race packets and bags to reduce the use of paper. Please bring your own bag if you wish us to transport items to the race finish.
- Please carpool to race start.
- Bring your own water bottle and you’ll help reduce use of paper cups.
- Water at finish will be in coolers or in prepoured cups. For those with own water bottles, water will be available from coolers. For participants without bottles, water will be prepoured in paper cups, cups that will be later composted through Sanitary Service Company (SSC).
- Recycling and compost receptacles will be provided by SSC at race finish.
- Efforts will be made to reduce food packaging.
In early 1967 as Dr. John and Nancy Arnold’s new home on the Interurban Trail was taking form, they pondered with Frank Schultz, fellow Cascade Wilderness Club member (and now the owner of Base Camp), two problems of the day: 1) how to get in shape for summer backpacking, and 2) how to get young people involved in something other than the psychedelic drug scene. Why not organize a cross country trail through their own backyard to challenge bodies of all ages? This, remember, was before Frank Shorter’s 1972 Munich Olympic Marathon win had popularized running In this country. No one was running in the streets then. Why, I believe there was only one brand of running shoe in the stores.
In May of 1967, the five-mile Chuckanut Cross Country Foot Race was courageously inaugurated by the Arnolds and Frank Schultz under the leadership of the Cascade Wilderness Club. They sent word of the run to high school and college track coaches, to the few track clubs around, and to other hiking clubs. Imagine their surprise when 70 people arrived from near and far to run that first race!
Of the serious runners, and there were several, the winners were Jim Freeman, (former cross country coach at Mt.Baker HS, but then in training for the Mexico City Olympic Marathon) and Vicki Folz (star of the Snohomish Track Club). Over 100 participated the second year. The Chuckanut Foot Race was off and running! The Arnold’s son Ken has the distinction of having run Chuckanut every year until 1986, when he moved to Alabama.
The original course started at Fairhaven Park, headed south on Chuckanut Drive and California Street to the Interurban Trail, and ended at the Fragrance Lake Trail crossing, a distance of 4.9 miles. Subsequent years saw the Finish stretched to the holding pond area at the South end of the InterUrban, stretching the distance to five miles. Jim Pearson, former U.S. ultramarathon record-holder and now cross country coach at Ferndale H.S., holds the record for the distance as well as the longest string of victories. Jim also took over the directorship of the run from the Arnolds and the Wilderness Club for one year before Dick Henrie and Bellingham Track and Field Club (later re-named the GBRC) took over the run in 1978.
The GBRC years have seen drastic change of the original course. In 1979, the Start was moved off Chuckanut Drive to the WWU track for safety’s sake after 522 of the previous year nearly trampled several cars, and the finish was stretched beyond the trail to the ampitheater of Larrabee State Park for a total distance of seven miles. The course start was then moved to the theatre across from the Bellingham Mall (now Sehome Village). This course was used until 1995, when long traffic backups on Fairhaven Parkway prompted the final change in the starting line, to its current location by the Ferry Terminal at the foot of Harris Ave.
During the 1990’s the popularity of the race continued to increase, and the number of runners peaked at over 800 before declining to around 600 after 2000. In 2006 Fairhaven Runners took over sponsorship of the race and attendance peaked again, and the race now has a cap of 1300 athletes.
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