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Leadville Trail 100



One of the most-coveted 100-mile trail running races in the world.

Trail Running Severe

157 km
4.3 km
4.3 km
1 day +
Low Point
2.8 km
High Point
3.8 km
Leadville Trail 100 Map

"The legendary 'Race Across The Sky’ 100-mile run is where it all started back in 1983,” reads the race’s introduction on LeadvilleRaceSeries.com. "This is it. The race where legends are created and limits are tested. One hundred miles of extreme Colorado Rockies terrain — from elevations of 9,200 to 12,600 feet. You will give the mountain respect, and earn respect from all.”


The Leadville Trail 100 still reigns supreme as one of the most revered 100-mile ultra trail races in the world. Leadville was part of a select cohort of races that helped transform the sport of ultra trail running into the international sensation that it now enjoys.

This 100-mile out-and-back course is brutally difficult. With over 14,000 feet of vertical gain (and loss) over the course’s distance, simply finishing before the cut off time is a feat that few can ever hope to accomplish. Only the best athletes in the world have even a hope of standing on Leadville’s podium.

The course begins in downtown Leadville, wraps around Turquoise Lake, and then traverses sections of the Colorado Trail to reach Twin Lakes. From Twin Lakes, the trail climbs up and over 12,508-foot Hope Pass to Winfield. The ghost town of Winfield serves as the turn around point, meaning you have to do it all again… starting with the most difficult part, the climb back up and over Hope Pass.

The trails and the scenery along the course are some of Colorado's best. Groves of whispering aspen trees provide welcome shade from the brutal high elevation sun. High alpine meadows boast a carpet of wildflowers, and the above treeline vistas from the top of Hope Pass have to be seen to be believed.

Yes, Leadville is absolutely and unequivocally brutal, but at the same time, it's a magical once-in-a-lifetime experience.

NOTE: The route shown here is one version of the official Leadville Trail 100 course, although the course can change from year to year. In addition, according to TrailRunProject.com, "two portions of the route are only open to runners on race day. It will be considered trespassing if you are on course on any other day.” These two sections run from mile 3.5-4.3 (95.2-96 on the way back) and from mile 23.5-24.75 (74.6-75.8 on the way back). If you want to run a part of the Leadville Trail 100 course outside of race day, we’ve mapped two bypasses for these sections of private party. You can bypass the first section of private property with this segment of road, and the second with this segment of road.

Sources: LeadvilleRaceSeries.com. TrailRunProject.com



Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.


4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

between July and September

Guidebooks in this area