Get ready to run in Dino Valley! The race is held at the beautiful Dinosaur Valley State Park in Glen Rose, Texas. This course has rolling and sustained ascents and descents, although none are terribly steep. The loops take you through varied terrain, from double track trails in fields to single track in wooded areas. There is a mix of packed dirt, smaller rocks, larger rocks, slick rock, and some roots. There are NO river crossings. This course really has a little of everything, which includes its views. There are amazing overlooks on this course where you can see for miles.
To access parking, camping, AND the start/finish, use the following address: 4004 Co Rd 1007, Glen Rose, TX 76043. Since you can't always trust GPS / map software, please use these directions as you approach the area:
The back gate to the park is located five miles west of Glen Rose.
Take U.S. Highway 67 S through Glen Rose
Turn Right on to Hereford St/56 N (then go 4 Miles)
Turn Left onto CO RD 1007 (then go 2.7 Miles)
There will be a gate on your left.
Click on the map for a bigger version.
Parking is FREE. There will be a parking pass in your packet. Put it on your windshield if you will want to go over to the park's main gates before, during, or after the race and not have to pay entry over there. This is great for your family to enjoy the parks, your crew to access you at one of the aid stations, and you can use the park's restrooms and campground showers before and after the race!
What am I picking up? The following things will be in your packet:
Your bib (write medical concerns we should know about on the back as well as emergency contact numbers)
Safety pins. Pin your bib wherever you want as long as it's on the front of you AND my volunteers can clearly read it at each aid station. If you fold your bib, do not bend the foam chip on the back of the bib.
Your entrant shirt (we may not be able to swap sizes, but you can ask)
Your Parking Pass. Put it on your car windshield to get free access during the weekend at the State Park.
If you signed up in the couple weeks before the race, swag provided may be limited to whatever we have left.
Please plan to arrive early so you have time to get your packet, run to the bathroom, and gear up for your race start, with enough extra time that you will NOT want to miss the trail briefing before we start.
Once your race distance starts, you have forfeited all rights to your packet, and the shirt in the packet will be made available to runners who showed up to the start of the race.
Aid Stations Locations
Aid Station Food / Drink
Check-In/Out & Dropping
For each 10.5-mile loop of the course, below are the aid station details. See the Cutoffs section above for aid station cutoff details.
FENCE LINE is an aid station you hit outbound and inbound in the longer loop so make sure you know which way you're headed or ask the volunteers if you don't know. 5 milers only hit Fence Line once outbound.
CEDAR BRAKE is accessed at the start/finish of each loop. It is two-way traffic from Cedar Brake to Fence Line aid station.
Here's everything in one big chart:
What We'll Be Stocking at the Aid Stations
WE ARE CUPLESS: We're a firm believer in the Leave No Trace principles of trail etiquette, so this will be a Cup-Free Event to eliminate the chance of litter. There will be no paper cups at this event. Everyone must carry some sort of hydration system with them, whether it's a handheld water bottle, a waist fuel belt, or a hydration pack. For other drink needs besides water at the aid stations, we recommend the Ultraspire C2 collapsible reusable cup or the Hydrapouch
WATER: Refreshing H2O at every aid station!
None of these foods or beverages below are guaranteed at any and all times. We'll stay stocked best we can. Choosing quantities to stock at an aid station is a total guessing game. If you want something certain, be sure to pack it in your drop bag.
The unmanned Cedar Brake aid station is only guaranteed to have water because you hit the Pavilion aid station only a quarter mile before.
ELECTROLYTE DRINK: The electrolyte drink on the course will be Tailwind Nutrition.
COLD FOODS: Most of the usuals at the minimum. Cookies, candy, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chips, pretzels, and more. Energy gels are such an individual item that we will not be providing - bring your own favorite if you want to use these as fuel.
HOT FOODS: At night, for the 100 milers, we will have hot food options of beef ramen and instant potatoes, maybe more options, and we will have coffee also.
Not all foods will be vegetarian friendly, and those with special needs (gluten-free or vegan, for example) and those who are super duper picky should plan to bring their own nutrition. Those with severe food allergies (like a nut allergy or celiac disease) need to be aware that we can not guarantee against cross-contamination.
Aid stations will not provide Advil, Aspirin, Motrin, or any other pain relievers.
Aid stations will not have blister kits. If you are concerned about blisters, carry what you will need in your pack or make sure it's in the drop bag at each location you might need to use it.
At every aid station, participants are expected to check in and out. If you are bib 482, when you arrive, yell "482 IN." When you leave, you or your pacer (for 100 milers) should yell "482 OUT" and check that someone is recording. This keeps our records accurate.
If you decide to drop out of the race, you must please let the aid station captain know and make sure they note it on their clipboard. We don't want you to leave with your crew and then we're calling you or your emergency contact a couple hours later looking for you, or searching the expanse of the trail system for you!
Volunteers will work to monitor every participant's ingress to and egress from the aid stations. We reserve the right to disqualify anyone whose times between any check-in or check-out do not grossly align with the paces expected based on their moving times the rest of the race and their racing history.
The race is held at the beautiful Dinosaur Valley State Park in Glen Rose, Texas. This course has rolling and sustained ascents and descents, although none are terribly steep. The loops take you through varied terrain, from double track trails in fields to single track in wooded areas. There is a mix of packed dirt, smaller rocks, larger rocks, slick rock, and some roots. There are NO river crossings in case you are reading past race reports or seeing old race photos (removed starting in 2018). This course really has a little of everything, which includes its views. There are amazing overlooks on this course where you can see for miles.
(Details on how the venue change in 2016 came about are here...The first two years the race took place at the highest point in the city of Dallas, Prayer Mountain, which is home to the Mountain Creek Church. The church owns the Big Cedar Wilderness Trail, which is maintained by the Dallas Off-Road Bike Association.)
The course we are using was first used in 2018.
5 Mile – 5-mile reduced portion of the main loop.
25K – 5 mile course for your first loop THEN 1 loop of the 10.5-mi loop.
50K – 3 loops of the 10.5-mi loop.
100K – 6 loops of the 10.5-mi loop.
100 Mile – 5 mile course for your first loop THEN 9 loops of the 10.5-mi loop.
10.5-mile loop (used for 25K, 50K, 100K, 100 Mile)
5-Mile Loop Map (used for 5 mile, 25K, and 100 miler)
5 Mile Course Map
The 5 mile route does not cross the river at any time. They still get to enjoy the well known scenic overlook where you can see down to the river about 4.25 miles in! And then we cut the half marathon course short to route runners back to the finish line.
Click on the map to see it bigger, PDF version!
*Mileage is not for contestation. You will cover at least the distance you signed up for.
This is not an exhaustive list but some hazards to watch out for on the trail:
Snakes - we've had a cold snap recently, so we hope they will have headed to hibernate. There are copperheads spotted in the spring, summer, and fall.
Bobcats and coyotes - we don't expect them to give anyone any trouble, but they do live in these woods.
Cactus - Be careful going off trail to use the bathroom.
River crossings - there are two per race loop, as well as 750 feet along and through a creek that empties into the river. We think it makes this course even more unique and cool. You will get your feet wet in both crossings. In rainy conditions, it may be calf deep. You need to pick your footing carefully on the rock shelves and rocky river floor. Take caution, especially in the middle of the night.
Slickrock - it's fine unless it rains and then it lives up to its name. Watch your footing.
Loose rocky terrain
As a state park, they have established a grid of trails through their land. It is each participant's responsibility to watch carefully for course markings. We will be using a combination of
bright pink contractor tape flagging, with reflective tape on the ends to capture the light of your headlamp in the dark, that will be clothespinned to tree branches and bushes.
bright pink stake flags for major field sections that don't have bushes to attach ribbons to
arrow signs (left, right, straight)
In spots where there's an intersection, just follow the flagging for the correct route to take if there are no arrow signs specifically. Flagging will be visible from where you are standing in the intersection.
Confidence flagging: For trail sections where there's no possible logical offshoot of a trail that you could take other than the one you are on, you may go as far as a half mile without flagging.
If you ever get to a spot where you are completely unsure of where you are, backtrack on the path you took until you get to course markers. If you become utterly and completely lost, never ever go off trail. Sit down where you are and wait until someone gets to you.
Ultimately, you are responsible for knowing the course.
*All items on this page subject to potential significant change.
Drop Bags, Crew, & Pacers
Participants can set out whatever they need at the start/finish area (Cedar Brake aid station).
No Drop Bags allowed at Fence Line aid station because of how remote it is to haul bags in and out.
Size of drop bags: Just exercise reason. The Race Director reserves the right to tell you that you are taking up too much real estate in the Drop Bag area. You may set up your things by the drop bag tarp with a camp chair if desired.
Crews may access their runners at only the Cedar Brake aid station.
Crews may only access their runners within 200 yards of the aid station. Crewing a participant outside that area may result in disqualification.
Crews may not eat or drink from the aid stations (does not apply to pacers).
Failure by any crew member to follow the rules set out here may result in disqualification of their runner.
Participants can have a pacer starting at mile 50 (therefore, pacers are for 100K and 100 mile runners only).
Participants can pick up or change pacers at only some aid stations. See the aid station section above for details on each location. Participants can only be paced by one person at a time. Pacers and crews are responsible for getting the pacer shuttled back and forth to whatever aid station they are going to start from or end at.
Be sure to read the directions carefully on how to get to the Pavilion aid station, located in the Aid Station section above!
No pacers are allowed in the 50K, 25K, or 5 mile races.
No muling allowed. This means that a pacer may not carry or deliver anything to their runner unless within 100 yards of an aid station. This includes food and water. Muling may be lead to disqualification.
Pacers may eat and drink from each aid station just like the participants, but not until shortly before they start pacing. You don't get to nosh all Saturday when you won't start pacing until Sunday 2 am, for example.
Failure by any pacer to follow the rules set out here may result in disqualification of their runner.
Cutoffs & Medical
VERY EXTENDED cutoffs in 2020. Now you must make it to the last aid station (Fence Line Inbound at Mile 97.5) in 34 hours!
There will be no FINAL cutoff time (within reasonable limits - read on).
There are incremental cutoffs ONLY. You must make each of these cutoffs in order to continue in the race.
50K, 25K, and 5 Mile starting on Saturday means you have ALL DAY so enjoy your time out there without worries about cutoffs.
Here are the cutoffs for all distances. Note the mileages though are based on all distances BUT the half marathon.
For 5 Milers (or the first reduced loop for half marathon or 100 milers), you will hit Fence Line at mile 2.5 and then the Finish Line (Cedar Brake) at Mile 5.
These cutoffs represent the time you must be OUT of the aid station by. If a participant chooses to leave an aid station and return to the race course after the time cutoff or after being told by aid station volunteers that they are being pulled from the race, the participant is instantly disqualified and may be banned from future races.
If you leave an aid station before the cutoff but then backtrack and return to that same aid station after the cutoff, you will be pulled from the race.
The finish line will be stripped to bare bones at 2:30 pm but if you can make the final cutoff, we will wait for you with your buckle or medal at the finish, however long you take to make the final 2.5 mile journey, within reasonable limits (up to 3 hours for that final stretch).
Medical:Each runner is responsible for their own actions. You need to be prepared both physically and mentally for all of the various stresses of the race. Our hope is to not have to call 911 for any of you. But in the event we have to in a medical emergency, medical expenses incurred are the responsibility of the participants receiving medical attention. Some parts of this trail are very remote to road access, and there may be a substantial amount of time that passes before medical personnel can arrive to provide aid.
Runners must understand all risks associated with undertaking this event. These physical and mental stresses include, but are not limited to, dehydration, hyponatremia, hypothermia, heat exhaustion, renal failure, seizures, hypoglycemia, disorientation, falls resulting in physical injury, complete physical and mental exhaustion, etc. Every participant is expected to monitor his or herself continually with an understanding of their own personal limitations. YOU, the individual participant, are absolutely responsible for your well being during and after the race.
Awards & Timing
Awards in each distance:
Top 3 Overall male and female
First place male and female in the following age groups: 00-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-99. If any distance grows substantially, we will consider going deeper in the awards categories.
There is no prize money. Awards for The Active Joe races are small and will travel well in checked or carry-on luggage.
Every finisher in the 5 mile, 25K, and 50K gets a finisher medal. Every finisher in the 100K and 100 Mile gets a belt buckle (different buckle for each distance). Those who finish the 100 Mile in under 24 hours will receive a special "Under 24 Hours" buckle.
The event will be chip timed. The "chip" is actually a tag attached to the back of the race bib. Unlike shoe chip tags, there are no special instructions for the bib tag. They do not have to be looped a specific way, nor is there possible runner mishandling that can compromise RFID timing. Do not take the foam cover off your bib chip. If you do not have a chip on the back of your bib, find the race timer by the start/finish early race day morning to get a new bib.
Some tips that enhance reader sensitivity, all of which are very standard practices:
Bibs need to be worn to ensure race timing. If they do not wear a bib, they do not receive a time.
Bibs should be worn on the front of the body.
Bibs should be worn visible to anyone observing, so on the exterior of clothing. If you wear a jacket and place the bib underneath, it can help if you expose the underlying bib upon mat-crossing to enhance reader sensitivity. This is usually only a precaution.
Bibs should not be crumpled up and placed inside runner's clothing.
Failure to register on multiple timing mats or incredibly inconsistent timing splits between timing mats may result in investigation and potential disqualification. The same is true for those not registering in the written rosters of check-ins at aid stations or inconsistent or unreasonable splits from one aid station to another.
There may be at least one timing mat besides the one at the start/finish somewhere out on the race course. We will not be announcing the locations of all of these mats.
If you find you inadvertently go off course or take a wrong turn, you must return to where you left the course before continuing. If you cut a loop short and realize it, immediately notify volunteers to go find the race officials so a determination can be made as to how to help you complete the full distance.
Those not following the course will risk disqualification.
For your entry, you receive:
Technical fabric shirt (in your size while supplies last)
The opportunity to run beautiful trails during a competitive race!
Being taken care of for up to 32+ hours (depending on your race distance) with aid station, portapotties, race timing, and a marked race course.
For your finish, you receive:
Every finisher in the 5 mile, 25K, and 50K gets a finisher medal.
A belt buckle for 100K and 100 Mile finishers. There will be one buckle for 100K finishers, one buckle for those who finish the 100 miler under 24 hours, and a different buckle for those who finish the 100 miler over 24 hours.
Average low temperature is 53. Average high temperature is 74. But it’s Texas so the weather is known for being unpredictable. October is historically the rainiest month in fall.
Sunrise: 7:44 am. Sunset: 6:38 pm.
The weather can be unpredictable, but hey, that's Texas for you! The first year, 2014, was a mudfest of constant rain. This resulted in a 20% finish rate in the 100 miler, the 50 miler having to be canceled, and an unusually low finish rate for a 50K.
In 2015, 17 hours into the 100 miler, the entire race had to be cancelled. Storms came through Friday into Friday night, and what wasn't forecasted to happen, they just sat on top of us as we approached midnight. This led to significant flash flooding on the course, which has the highest point in Dallas but also has quite a few valleys and hollows. Runners reported chest deep water. We held the race for an hour to see if the storms would move through and when they didn't and we had more reports of bridges being out and snakes moving out on the trails in the higher elevations to escape drowning, we were forced to cancel all the events.
In 2016, we had a 0% chance of rain in the forecast, and it still managed to rain just about the whole event.
In 2017, we had record heat for DFW, with temperatures topping out in the high 80's.... in November.
In 2018, the weather was finally perfect!
If we find you littering, you're disqualified. We are here by the permission of the property owners, and we want them to invite us to come back. Don't jeopardize that for everyone. If you get all the way out of the aid station with a gel wrapper, paper cup, or anything else, carry it with you to the next aid station.
Trail runners from all over the United States, and all across the great state of Texas, travel to experience this event. Whether you’re traveling a short distance or far distance, we encourage you to enjoy the local attractions and make a weekend stay of your race weekend.
To see an overall map of restaurant, lodging, and local attractions - Click here
ACCOMMODATIONS - HOTEL
If you’re traveling from Dallas or other cities East of Glen Rose:
If being one with nature for the weekend is your preference, we have several options for you. When you register for the race, these are an optional add-on cost available. Get them while they're still available!
You book this during your race registration with the race in Ultrasignup. If you already registered, you can book just a campsite by purchasing it here...
Option 1: Official Campsites with Hookups: We have 45 water and eletric campsites with pads for $24 a night inside the State Park. These sites must be reserved with us as the State Park has given us all the campsites for our runners. We will assign the spots and let the park know so when you check in at the main office to get your tag to put on your campsite, then they'll be expecting you. Each site has picnic table, water hookup, electric hookup, 30 amp hookup, and fire ring and/or grill. These campsites are for RV or tent camping.
Option 2: Tent-Only Group Campsite (Pick a Spot) Near Bathrooms/Showers: There is a tents-only group campsite (Sauropod) located next to the water/electric hookup loop that is still easy walking distance to showers/bathrooms. The cost to you for us to reserve is $8 a night. It's a nice alternative when hookup campsites (Option 1) is sold out or if you want a low cost simple tent camping option. It is only for our group, so you'll be able to pick among our specific area's open spaces, shade trees, and picnic tables, to set up your tent and camp set-up! All first come, first served on finding a spot to pitch your tent. The tent-only group campsite is the top left red circle on the map below.
Option 3: Car Camping: You are welcome to sleep in your car parked in the Parking Field if that works best for you. Because we have all of the state park, absolutely NO TENT CAMPING IN THE PARKING FIELD.
All race packets will be given a sheet to put on your windshield to give you State Park access inside the park gates, where you can drive to restrooms with indoor plumbing and the campground shower building.
While at Rough Creek for the weekend, there are multiple unique entertainment options:
Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is an exotic animal ranch that spans 1,400 acres. The 9-mile driving tour is full of encounters with many different animals. Fossil Rim is a short 20 minute drive from Rough Creek Lodge and even shorter 10 minute drive from the Glen Rose hotels.
Dinosaur World is a fun, family attraction highlighting the prehistoric past of Glen Rose & Dinosaur Valley State Park. Located right outside the entrance of Dinosaur Valley State Park, it’s a great place for the kids to get exercise and see life-size dinosaur species.
Take a throwback trip to The Brazos Drive-In Theatre to grab some popcorn, tune in and turn up the radio, and enjoy a drive-in movie. About a 40 minute drive from Rough Creek Lodge, but still worth highlighting because these vintage opportunities are few and far between.
A car will be needed to get around. There will be no shuttle service arranged, as we expect the vast majority of attendees to be locals or have rented a car for the trip from the airport.
Dallas, Texas is served by two area airports: Dallas-Love Field (DAL) is the smaller one where Southwest Airlines flies out of, and then all other airlines fly through Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).
DFW - Dallas-Fort Worth International - 82.8 miles, approx. 1 hr, 25 minutes in good traffic
DAL - Dallas Love Field - 86.0 miles, approx. 1 hr, 30 minutes in good traffic
As with all The Active Joe races, bib numbers are assigned in order of signup, so the lowest numbers for those most enthusiastic who sign up first!
You are also given the chance to request your top 3 "lucky" bib numbers. If not already claimed, I'll give you the first one of those listed that I can!
You can personalize your bib with any nickname until September 15th.
Mail-in registration is not available.
Entry Fees:As of March 15, we were already at 80% of our signups from last year!! So the race will fill fast.
Emphasis will be on the longer distances so shorter distances may close temporarily if they fill too fast to allow certain percentages in each distance. Some swag as we get closer to race day will be limited to the first so many that sign up in that distance once orders are placed.
We understand that LIFE HAPPENS! Note that, unlike a lot of races, this race offers a refund policy (described below) and even refunds if you downgrade your distance (also described below). You may also go up in distance up until the start of the race (also described below). So there is no downside for committing to your goal now!
100 Mile -
First 20 runners - $185
Next 20 runners - $195
Next 100 runners- $210 (current price tier) - 27 spots left as of 4/27!
Next 20 runners- $220
Until race week - before 11/16 - $230
Race week - 11/16 and through race day (if not sold out) - $240
First 20 runners - $115
Next 20 runners - $130 (current price tier)
Until race week - before 11/16 - $140
Race week - 11/16 and through race day (if not sold out) - $150
First 20 runners - $95
Next 10 runners - $105
Next 10 runners - $120 (current price tier)
More than 40 runners - Until race week - before 11/16 - $130
Race week - 11/16 and through race day (if not sold out) - $140
First 20 runners - $80
Next 30 runners - $90 (current price tier) - 6 more spots at this level as of 4/27
Next 30 runners - $100
Next 20 runners - $105
Until race week - before 11/16 - $110
Race week - 11/16 and through race day (if not sold out) - $115
5 Mile -
First 20 runners - $50
Next 30 runners - $60 (current price tier)
Next 30 runners - $65
Until race week - before 11/16 - $70
Race week - 11/16 and through race day (if not sold out) - $75
*All prices subject to change.
Refunds can be requested if you find your plans change.
Refunds are subject to a $15 Administration Fee before September 1st
Refunds are subject to a $25 Administration Fee September 1st through September 30th
Refunds are subject to a $35 Administration Fee October 1st to October 20th
No refunds will be processed after October 20th
See dropping down distances ahead of time below for info on refunds for downgrading your distance and receiving a refund before October 20th.
Want to transfer your race entry to a friend? Bib transfers will be allowed until October 1st with a $15 Administration Fee. After that at the discretion of the Race Director's available time for an administration fee of $30. NO TRANSFERS ALLOWED ON RACE DAY. If we've already committed the available swag (like shirts), your friend taking your bib gets whatever sizes/stuff you signed up for (no switches).
Changing Distances Ahead of Time
If you want to switch distances before your race starts, email us if before Wednesday, November 20, or come find me at the race start/finish at packet pickup and runner check-in time pre-race, and we'll verify we have the swag and finisher gear to support it, and we'll approve it.
If upgrading distances, you will just need to pay the difference between the price you paid for your original distance and the current price at the time of the request for your new distance.
If downgrading distances and the lower distance costs less than you paid, you can get a refund for the difference minus the admin fee shown above in the refund schedule. Refunds for distance downgrades will only be granted until October 20th.
If downgrading distances and the lower distance now costs more than when you originally paid, you will owe the difference, plus a $5 administrative fee.
You can only change distances while that distance has spots still available.
Dropping Down Distances Mid-race
If you drop down mid-race to a shorter distance than you initially signed up for, then you will not have an official finish in the shorter distance. Dropping mid-race will result in a DNF (Did Not Finish). We all have bad days. It's okay. If you want to switch distances ahead of time, talk to us (or email us), we'll verify we have the swag and finisher gear to support it, and we'll approve it BEFORE your race starts.
We will offer a wait list for those who didn't get in if the race sells out early. Depending on when you get pulled off the wait list if a spot opens up, your swag (like shirt and other stuff) options may be limited or you may not receive some of it. We do not over-order stuff.
See our Transgender Entrant Policywhich applies to all races produced by The Active Joe and seeks to support, include, and protect the privacy of the transgender athletes who attend our races.
No dogs or strollers are allowed on the race course for the safety of all.
Runners and walkers are both welcome, as long as you can finish by the time limit.
Entry fees are non-refundable, including in the case of inclement weather.
No refunds will be granted if you downgrade at any time.
This is a private event, so unregistered participants are not allowed. "Banditting" (as this action is referred to) is frowned upon in the running community and unfair to the runners who paid for the opportunity to participate. Race entry fees go for a lot more than water on a course, medals at the finish line, and a shirt in your race packet. It also exposes an event to serious liability risk. It stresses race resources that were calibrated for the sold-out number of participants and therefore can put other participants', the paid participants, health or safety at risk. Those who bandit any portion of the race may be banned from future events by The Active Joe.
Note that it is never okay to allow someone else to use your bib without a proper bib transfer arranged with the Race Director. This can lead to serious liability and medical risks in the chance of emergency and jeopardize the future of the event for everyone.
Our primary goal is to provide a safe event for participants, volunteers, and the community alike. If something arises that threatens that safety, then a) the event will be altered as it is reasonably possible without stressing other resources, b) the events may be delayed during the morning, or c) the event may be canceled. The event can not be rescheduled for another date due to resource availability in the event of cancelation.
Event shirts not picked up at packet pickup or race day will not be mailed.
*All items above subject to potential significant change.