Summer is the quintessential season for getting out in the sun, spending time with family and friends, and taking advantage of every sunny day. What's the best way to do this? By planning adventurous activities and embarking on bucket-list road trips. (Plus, it's the most acceptable time of year to be excessively sweaty in public.)
Being back in the office and connecting with coworkers, and sending the kids back to school to make face-to-face friends, is great. But getting outdoors, soaking up the sun, tackling something challenging, and getting dirty and gritty in some of the country's most picturesque, serine, and badass locations is the PERFECT way to team build, strengthen connections, and maximize your summer.
The 2023 Spartan and Tough Mudder obstacle course race schedules are absolutely packed with adventure-filled, epic weekends of all distances — from 5K to 50K — from coast to coast. If you're sick of staring out your living room window all summer and want to get out of your comfort zone and try something new, use this checklist to hit every location on your Spartan and Tough Mudder summer bucket list. How many can you complete by the time fall rolls around?
The Complete List of 2023 Summer Spartan and Tough Mudder Obstacle Course Races
June 3-4, 2023
Look, we know summer doesn't technically start until June 21, but we're using this sunny month as the symbolic start to an epic summer.
This 2023 Honor Series weekend, located just six miles outside of downtown Salinas, Calif., is a Spartan favorite for a reason: Toro Park's vast terrain portfolio — including punishing hills, fast and flat fields and prairies, and thick, wooded expanses — offers something scenic for everyone. Whether you're racing a Sprint 5K, a Super 10K, bringing tiny Spartans for a Kids race, or traipsing over the 10K, half-marathon, and 50K Trail courses, 5,000 sprawling acres will take you atop dusty peaks to take in awe-inspiring views of Northern California. And if you're lucky, you might even spot some local wildlife, including deer, coyotes, mountain lions, and golden eagles.
Once you cross the finish line, the rest of Toro Park is essentially an outdoor adventurist's dream, with mountain biking and equestrian trails, over 20 miles of hiking land, sports fields, and more.
June 10-11, 2023
Colorado Springs Spartan Event Weekend (June 10-11)
Yet another Honor Series race is coming to Fort Carson Army Base this June, with Sprints, Supers, and Kids races all weekend long. This course has little in the way of elevation gain, but technical trails at over 6,000 feet of altitude make it deceivingly challenging. It'll be flat, dusty, and under sunny, open skies, so come prepared to be tested on the same terrain that continues to test this country’s finest servicemen and servicewomen (and don't forget your sunscreen).
After a short time apart, Spartan is excited to be back at Perfect North Slopes for a fourth time. Just 30 minutes outside of Cincinnati, this ski resort will challenge racers with a nice mixture of hills, flat-field running, and some water and mud to add that extra layer of difficulty. Expect this to be a fast, yet challenging, Trifecta weekend. Plus, don't forget to bring the kids! There is more than enough mud for the entire family.
Parking for the event will be located onsite. The festival will be integrated with the Base Lodge, including a nice obstacle viewing area. When you're off the course, enjoy all that Cincinnati has to offer: gardens, mountains, and museums. No matter what you’re into, you’ll find it exploring the Buckeye State.
Welcome to the iconic Stratton Mountain in southern Vermont, which is easily accessible from all major metro locations in the Northeast U.S. This monstrosity of a peak is the tallest pinnacle in the southern Green Mountains, so come prepared for an extreme challenge: daunting elevation gain, gnarly single-track trails, and miles of stunning New England scenery.
June 17-18, 2023
A true bucket-list item for music and history enthusiasts alike, our Upstate New York races are held at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, which gained international fame when 500,000 travelers met up for the Woodstock music festival (billed as the “Aquarian Explosion”) in 1969.
Instead of three days of peace and music, racers are in for two days of self-imposed pain, obstacles, and insanely good times. (The peace and music come after you cross the finish line.) With Sprint 5Ks and Kids races that feature modest rolling hills, sweeping meadows, and gorgeous, lush forestry, this venue is a perfect trip for first-timers and Spartan families (yet still a favorite for seasoned racers).
And for a deep dive into Woodstock history, be sure to plan a visit to the Bethel Woods Center Museum.
We're bringing back the muddy mayhem to Koenig Sand and Gravel this June. Less than an hour from downtown Motor City, you'll put the pedal to the metal on an insane course full of rolling hills, tree-lined trails, scenic lakes, and thrilling obstacles.
July 1, 2023
July 8-9, 2023
Notre Dame Spartan Event Weekend (July 8 only)
Notre Dame Stadium is arguably the most iconic college football stadium of all time, and this year, Spartans will descend upon the legendary field for the first time in OCR history.
The World of Life mural, the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, and the Golden Dome are all visible from inside the stadium, and their beauty and significance as Notre Dame landmarks will leave you in awe as you climb nearly four miles of concrete stairs and demolish obstacles in the end zone. Perhaps the greatest perk of all, the course grants you an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at the stadium's every twist and turn.
This Huntsville, Utah Trifecta weekend offers perhaps the most diverse agenda, with Sprints, Supers, Beasts, Kids races, an Ultra 50K, and even Age Group-focused U.S. National Series Super heats. But as welcoming as the event availability is, the course itself is no walk in the park.
The sixth-most challenging of our U.S. courses, Snowbasin was home to the 2002 Winter Olympics. And if it’s a challenge fit for Olympians, it’s certainly fit for Spartans. You'll face a 3,000-foot vertical to the summit while overcoming intense altitude, technical terrain, and leg-burning hills, but the view at the top makes it more than worth it (even in heat that can reach up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit). And if you don't get enough of the view during the race, hop on a gondola for some extra sightseeing.
Tough Mudder Twin Cities (Including Toughest Mudder)
It's true: Twin Cities is back for 2023, and with a course that's bigger and bolder than ever before. Psych yourself up for miles of insanely muddy trails, crazy new obstacles, and life-changing memories.
July 15-16, 2023
Just a quick trip for Tri-State New Yorkers looking for some solace in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains, the Palmerton Sprint and Super weekend is ranked our fourth-most difficult course on the calendar. Not only is this one of our longest tenured venues, but the climbs up Blue Mountain's double black diamond ski runs — featuring the iconic Double Sandbag Carry — are known for terrorizing even the Elites (in the best way possible).
And don't forget to invite your friends and family to cheer you on! Palmerton is the perfect spectator venue, offering chair lift rides for anyone interested in jaw-dropping views of the course and surrounding area.
July 22-23, 2023
Tough Mudder Colorado (Including Infinity)
It's time for mile-high mudding. At this mid-summer weekend, you can climb the Rockies, or you can really test yourself at Tough Mudder Colorado. We're bringing you jaw-dropping views, plus quad- and lung-burning trails that you'll never forget.
July 29-30, 2023
Just an hour from downtown Indianapolis, come crush a 5K or 10K on CERAland Park's absolutely stunning lakeside trails.
Aug. 5-6, 2023
Often humid and always wet — which contributes to its ninth-hardest-race rating — this North Carolina course is full of surprises, and will definitely keep you on your toes. The staggering Blue Ridge Mountains tower around Asheville, NC, where Spartans will battle it out over Sprints, Supers, and Kids races.
The area is teeming with well-trodden horse trails that make much of the course low on the technicality scale. But you'll still find yourself plunging through river runs, scrambling up red clay-laden mountainsides, and doing some backwoods bushwhacking. While we can't guarantee simplicity on this course, we can certainly guarantee a damn good time, and an unbeatable high at the finish line.
Aug. 12-13, 2023
This year we are back at Carter and Stevens Farm in Barre, Massachusetts. The lush, robust farm offers a lot of mud, woods, and rolling hills. After your race, visit the Carter and Stevens Farm Store, where you can find homemade ice cream, fresh milk, and grass-fed beef. Plus, stop by the Stone Cow Brewery to reward yourself with an ice cold beverage to end the day.
Shift into overdrive at Sonoma Raceway this August. Only an hour from downtown San Fransisco, this insane course is full of scenic vistas, rolling hills, and — of course — world-famous obstacles.
Aug. 26-27, 2023
This weekend — featuring Sprints, Supers, Beasts, and Kids races — is designed to test your grit. With seemingly infinite miles of rolling West Virginia hills and steep inclines, the technical terrain — and deep swims — of Summit Bechtel Reserve will build physical and mental strength and provide you with a high that is only fit for the oldest mountain range in the world, the Appalachian Mountains.
Whichever distance you choose, don't forget to look down while crossing the extensive suspension bridge, where you'll witness some of the most epic white-water rafting waves in the state.
After the race, don't miss out on the chance to test your adventurous side even further. You can choose from kayaking and rafting, rugged ATV river rides, 50+ mile “bikepacking” trips, shooting sports, and history-infused hiking.
Under the warm glow of the California sun, Spartans will come together to brave heat and hills on this course's expansive range of wooded trails and wide-open spaces. Take a complete escape from the madness of modern life and challenge yourself in this Bay Area obstacle course race retreat.
Tough Mudder Chicago (Including Infinity)
The mud and camaraderie on this course is thicker than any deep dish you'll find in nearby Chicago. Get ready to annihilate obstacles on the grounds of Rockford International Airport, Mudders.
Sept. 3, 2023
Sept. 9-10, 2023
Tough Mudder Pittsburgh (Including Toughest Mudder)
Tough Mudder Pittsburgh is coming back and bringing more wilderness than ever to The Steel City, so assemble your crew and get ready to take on an epically muddy course packed with winding trails, rolling hills, and legendary obstacles.
Sept. 16-17, 2023
Killington — the most difficult U.S. course on the schedule — is a BEAST. Course Manager Steve Hammond once described this Vermont course by saying, “You won’t know until you go,” which hints at the never-before-seen obstacles you’ll face throughout your off-trail descents, enormous Green Mountain climbs, shockingly-cold plunges, and a finish line that resembles a scene from a battle.
Nestled in the birthplace of Spartan, this weekend's festivities are extensive, with everything from Sprints to Ultras to Hurricane Heats. These courses will push you (and your calves and quads) to your absolute breaking point, but if you can persevere to the finish, you'll have the holy grail of Spartan races underneath your belt.
It may be summer, but just on the outskirts of Seattle, Snohomish, Wash. still offers the same cold and wet conditions. Fog will likely fall on early-morning racers as they prepare to tackle Trifecta-qualifying races (or an entire Trifecta) on over 300 acres of lush, abundant greenery and damp, rolling, wooded trails.
With just under 1,000 feet of elevation gain — totally doable for a beginner — the weekend's rugged Sprint, Super, and Beast courses offer insane views of the Puget Sound and the treacherous, snow-capped Cascade Mountains. After your race, be sure to spend some time in Historic Downtown Snohomish — one of Budget Travel's 2020 "Top 10 Coolest Small Towns in America."
Located between the Patuxent and Wicomico Rivers, Spartan is taking over Budds Creek Motocross Park, the premier motocross facility in the Mid-Atlantic. This venue will have no shortage of slippery mud pits, water crossings, and motocross inclines. This is a perfect course for beginners, or for those who want to put their grip strength to the test.
Sept. 23-24, 2023
Tough Mudder Seattle (Including Infinity)
Fall might be beginning this weekend, but what better way to finish out your summer than with towering trees, ominous skies, and fresh air? Just outside of Seattle, you'll have plenty of time to take in the scenery while you're stuck in the black coal mud on this gorgeous course packed with tree-lined trails.