OCR Insider: Everything You Need to Know About the Spartan Races in September

OCR Insider: Everything You Need to Know About the Spartan Races in September
Presented by Spartan Training®

If you think you're just going to walk onto a Spartan course and crush it, you're in for a rude awakening. You need to prepare: You need to know the venue, the course, the terrain, the level of difficulty, and the likely conditions. Every month in OCR INSIDER, we look at the upcoming races on the schedule and tell you everything you need to know so when you reach the start line, you're ready. On the docket this month: Nationals Park, Killington, Seattle, Red Deer, San Jose Trail, the Midwest, Kissimmee Spartan City, and the Spartan North American Championship — North Lake Tahoe.

Nationals Park Spartan Stadion 5K (Sept. 11)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

In this Washington, D.C., 5K Stadion race, you'll conquer 20 obstacles in a Major League Baseball ballpark. There will be Kids races, too.

The Venue: Nationals Park

Baseball fans will appreciate racing in the park where the Nationals played three of the seven 2019 World Series games. Although they lost all three of those games to the Houston Astros (Games 3, 4, and 5), the Nationals remarkably won the final two away games in thrilling fashion to take the series.

Related: This Is Your Chance to Race in the Most Iconic Stadiums and Ballparks in the World

Weather: Let It Rip

Expect mild-to-moderate temperatures, typically from 53 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Local temps rarely climb into the 80s around this time of year.

Bonus: The Capitol Riverfront

Kayaking, fishing, dining, splash pads — you name it — the Capitol Riverfront has epic attractions waiting for those looking to reward themselves after a hard race effort.

Vermont Spartan Ultra 50K, Beast 21K, and Sprint 5K Weekend (Sept. 11-12)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

A full slate of Spartan races (Beast, Ultra, Sprint, and Kids) are coming to Killington, Vt., the birthplace of Spartan race.

Tune up your OCR skills and preview the course at the Obstacle Specialist Course scheduled for Sept. 10.

Venue: Meet Your True Self

There’s off-road, and then there’s off-off-road. Be prepared to face rigorous climbs, highly technical descents, and ice-water dips that will cool you off — not to mention the Vermont ski country's stunning beauty.

Related: These Are the 10 Hardest Spartan Races on the Schedule. Think You Can Handle One?

Weather: Not the Problem to Be Solved

The weather won’t be extreme. Look forward to temperatures being in the mid-50s to the mid-70s. You can put all of your energy into the grind of the course.

Bonus: Discover Your Inner Ninja

There’s plenty to do while you're in the area. In the winter, Killington is bustling with skiers. In the summer, well, take your pick. Test yourself by trying something new, from downhill mountain biking, to hiking, to discovering your “inner ninja.”

Even if you just want to enjoy some serious post-race recovery, you might be up for the Killington Grand Spa.

Seattle North Spartan Trifecta Weekend (Sept. 11-12)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

Yet another Sept. 11-12 race weekend, the Snohomish, Wash., event has a Trifecta on the menu: Beast, Super, and Sprint races are waiting for intrepid souls to take on the challenge. Races for the kids make the whole weekend a family affair.

Similar to Killington, the Sept. 10 Obstacle Specialist Course offers technique training and a preview of the course.

Venue: The Heart of Cascadia

Within the pristine Pacific Northwest, Snohomish is centered between the Puget Sound and the Cascade Mountains. It’s about a 45-minute drive north of Seattle and a couple of hours south from Vancouver. Have your trail legs ready.

Related: There Are More Trifecta Weekends Than EVER. Find Yours at One of These 9 Epic Locations.

Weather: Dreamy With a Chance of Rain

Racers will enjoy temps between 54 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, with a sobering 22% chance of rain this time in September.

Bonus: Hidden Life of Trees

If you like a post-race walk to get the blood moving and enhance recovery, check out this walking tour of the spectacular trees in Snohomish.

Red Deer Spartan Trifecta Weekend (Sept. 11-12)

The Gist

Beast, Super, Sprint, and Kids races will all headline this Trifecta weekend in Alberta, Canada. The event also packs in a Hurricane Heat.

Venue: The Ranch

The Heritage Ranch consists of 217 acres along the Red Deer River.

Weather: Late Summer by Early Fall

Expect temperatures to push no higher than the low 60s.

Bonus: Bombing With Your Bike

If you have your mountain bike with you, sneak over for some intense cross-country, single-track tracing through the Red Deer Mountain Bike Park

For an award-winning post-race refreshment, swing by the Troubled Monk Brewery.

San Jose Spartan Trail 50K, Half-Marathon, 10K, and 10K Night Run (Sept. 17-18)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

This Saratoga, Calif., weekend is a festival of Trail racing on northern California trails among the redwoods and tan bark oaks, featuring a 50K Ultra, a half-marathon, a 10K, and a 10K night run — all with zero obstacles. 

Venue: Home to Redwoods

The lush forests of Sanborn County Park are sandwiched between the Big Basin Redwoods State Park and the big city of San Jose.

Weather: Dry (And Not Too Hot)

The air in the area is typically dry during this time of year. Expect temperatures to range between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bonus: Big Basin on the Rebound

The CZU Lighting Complex Fire of 2020 ravaged the Big Basin Redwoods State Park, but signs of life are emerging and parts of the park have reopened. You can be a part of the Reimagining Big Basin.

For pre- or post-race fun, you're a few short drives to the modern nightlife of San Jose and the easy beach scene of Santa Cruz.

Midwest Spartan Beast 21K and Sprint 5K Weekend (Sept. 18-19)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

A 21K Beast and a 5K Sprint highlight this weekend in Attica, Ind., about 80 miles northwest of Indianapolis. Feel free to bring the kids — we have races for them, too. 

Venue: The Badlands

The Badlands Off-Road Park consists of 1,400 acres of wicked race terrain, including wooded trails, rock, mud, and sand dunes. The design is meant to stress test ATVS, dirt bikes, and the like ... and you.

Weather: Not Too Bad

Racers can expect temperatures from the mid-50s to mid-70s for this time in late summer.

Bonus: End Your Search of the Sasquatch Burger

If you have a machine that you can drive off-road, you can blast it through the Badlands.

And while you’re there, don’t miss out on the Sasquatch Burger.

Kissimmee Spartan City (Sept. 18)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist

Ideal for the newbie, the Kissimmee, Fla., Spartan City ranges from 3K to 5K in distance — a 20-obstacle race that scrambles into major metropolitan centers.

Venue: A Big Park Near the Amusement Parks

Get started at the Osceola Heritage Park with a welcoming course and a pitch-perfect introduction to OCR.

Weather: You Won’t Need a Scarf

It’s Orlando, during the last days of summer. Exceptionally warm (into the 80s) with the punch of central Florida humidity. Come prepared by getting a good dose of heat training, complemented by a disciplined pre-race hydration program.

Bonus: The Happiest Places on Earth

Kissimmee is an ideal event to intertwine an amusement-park vacation with a Spartan Race. (As in, it’s 20 miles away from Disney World. The to-do list is virtually endless.

2021 Spartan North American Championship: North Lake Tahoe Spartan Ultra 50K and Beast 21K Weekend (Sept. 25-26)

Spartan Races in September

The Gist 

A challenging, high-altitude set of races, the Spartan North American Championship starts with an Ultra (50K, 60 obstacles), a Beast (half-marathon, 30 obstacles), and also a 10K Trail run that — save for the fact you’re racing at night — is without obstacles. Make it a family weekend and sign your kids up for the Kid of the Hill races.

Venue: Olympic History

Squaw Valley is also known as Olympic Valley, a historical salute to the venue’s hosting of the 1960 Winter Olympics. 

Related: 5 Epic Things You Need to Do When You Visit North Lake Tahoe

You’ll be facing a base elevation of just over 6,000 feet, with technical trails that can ascend to 9,000 feet.

Weather: Cool Enough

The Tahoe weather is beginning to get an autumn, high-altitude chill, and temperatures typically range from the thirties to the low 60s. If you’re doing the Ultra, come prepared in every way that you know how.

Bonus: The Big Blue

Nearly 22 miles long and 12 miles wide, Lake Tahoe is one million years old, making it one of the oldest lakes on Earth and a premiere travel location for the lovers of the outdoors. Beaches, rafting, boats, hiking and — for the true Spartan averse to the cold — swimming.

For a wide-spectrum look at things to do when exploring the region, visit here.

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