Overall Rating
Overall Rating (11 Reviews)
4.8
(11 Ratings)(11 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
4.6
SCENERY
5
PRODUCTION
4.2
SWAG
3
Since the inaugural race over Labor Day Weekend in 2008, the Madison Marathon has grown by leaps and bounds. It has joined the ranks of American marathons that sell out each year. We have hosted runners from at least 40 states and several countries. Nearly one-half of the runners come … MORE
Local Weather (Jul 21)
2017 2016 2015 2014 2013
 
H (°F) 84 88 87 78 87
L (°F) 54 54 58 58 54
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Recent reviews

    Profile photo of Trey Horbinski
    treyhorbins FIRST-TIMER '17

    Even though this was my first marathon, I'd like to preface this review saying that I have lots of experience running and competing at a high level at the collegiate … MORE

    Even though this was my first marathon, I’d like to preface this review saying that I have lots of experience running and competing at a high level at the collegiate level. With that being said, this race has without a doubt been the hardest thing I’ve ever physically done. The first half is fine, sure there are some steep uphills, but it feels like a net downhill. The second half ate me alive. I swear I should have brought climbing gear to get up some of those uphills. They were killing my will to live. I walked up some hills— I NEVER walk, but I physically couldn’t go any faster. As someone who never hydrates during a run, I stopped at every water station. I would recommend drinking 3 or 4 glasses of water at each one, even if you don’t think you need it. The water stops are pretty spaced out; they feel especially spaced out the second half! All in all, it definitely lived up to the billing and I’m glad that this race was my first marathon! Heck of a job by the race organizer, Sam. Thanks and good luck with this race in the future.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    Profile photo of Travis Wilson
    TravisWilson FIRST-TIMER '17

    When I first heard of this race, I had never run a marathon before. The opportunity to run on an open road surrounded by some of the best scenery in … MORE

    When I first heard of this race, I had never run a marathon before. The opportunity to run on an open road surrounded by some of the best scenery in the U.S. and in Montana of all places was enough to make me pursue this dream. It took two years to get there, but there I was right next to Black Butte on the morning of July 22, 2017 ready to get this epic run under way. And what a run it was!
    While it was easily the toughest race I’ve ever undertook, it went by very quick. The scenery pulls you forward and you just keep wondering what’s over the next hill. Mile 23 was possibly the hardest mile I’ve ever faced in my life. I cursed it at the time, but hours later I found myself contemplating coming back next year. If you get motion sickness like me, the bus ride was the worst part about this race.
    Highly recommend this race. The race staff is so friendly and down to earth. I know for sure I’ll be back. Next time, running two marathons.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    Profile photo of Kerri Patrick Wertz
    kerri2550 REPEAT RUNNER '17

    This race is definitely unique and a must do. The course is very difficult. The constant uphill climb, heat, and elevation will knock you out. You feel that much more … MORE

    This race is definitely unique and a must do. The course is very difficult. The constant uphill climb, heat, and elevation will knock you out. You feel that much more accomplished at the end for sticking through. I will continue to do this race. Race director and team are awesome and friendly. They make an effort to get to know the runners. I also prefer smaller races where you can get to know other runners. It’s nice to see everyone on the course.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    Profile photo of Paul Millachip
    Grindspud FIRST-TIMER '16

    Suggest take your own hydration system and plan to refill on the course. Altitude was not an issue for myself despite living and doing most of my training at sea … MORE

    Suggest take your own hydration system and plan to refill on the course. Altitude was not an issue for myself despite living and doing most of my training at sea level. However I did spend three weeks at an evelation of around 5000 feet before the race. Very friendly atmosphere which I really liked. Race was well organised.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    Profile photo of Barry Fischer
    queequeg1971 FIRST-TIMER '16

    The headline for this race; These Ain't no Pansy Big City Races lives up to its billing. The aid stations are sparce, but the skyline isn't. The view was just … MORE

    The headline for this race; These Ain’t no Pansy Big City Races lives up to its billing. The aid stations are sparce, but the skyline isn’t. The view was just breathtaking as the altitude. Don’t worry about the race clock, instead enjoy where you are. I have ran many races where your pace and the clock are the focus of the race, but this was different. I took time to just soak everything in.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3
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    Profile photo of Dena Lowder Maddison
    de_5 REPEAT RUNNER '16

    Just like it's advertised this ain't no Pansy Ass City Race,! This race reaches high altitudes with big hills, it is not a race you just comes and run! The … MORE

    Just like it’s advertised this ain’t no Pansy Ass City Race,! This race reaches high altitudes with big hills, it is not a race you just comes and run! The views are amazing, it is worth every hard hour!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    Profile photo of Matt Holton
    holtongallery FIRST-TIMER '16

    Montana is great and the people who live there love it. This was my first off road marathon - I trained at high elevation and worked on long hills, but … MORE

    Montana is great and the people who live there love it. This was my first off road marathon – I trained at high elevation and worked on long hills, but the long rolling hills in the last half brought we to a walk. Sam is a great race director with lots of energy and passion. I gave it a 5 for swag since I got a reserve bottle of bourbon from Willies Distillery for coming in first.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    My Report
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5
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    Profile photo of Zoe Metro
    zorides FIRST-TIMER '16

    Unbelievable course. Scenery is unreal. Coming from sea level the day before, the elevation was tough. I could breathe fine, no headache or nausea, but man my legs wouldn't go! … MORE

    Unbelievable course. Scenery is unreal. Coming from sea level the day before, the elevation was tough. I could breathe fine, no headache or nausea, but man my legs wouldn’t go! There are some long grueling up hills that are near to impossible to run. Starting at mile 1! Eased up by mile 5. Maybe 100yds of flat running in 26.2 miles. Footing is great, aid stations were every 3ish miles. Not a lot of calories though. Water and sometimes Gatorade. I ran with a camelback and was glad I did. PW for sure. Ironman marathon time + almost an hour.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    Profile photo of Richard Burrage
    r7j7b7 FIRST-TIMER '16

    My previous marathons have all been Asian city based. Whilst I have run some mountain trails in Dalat and Sapa Vietnam, none compare. This marathon is simply breath taking, every … MORE

    My previous marathons have all been Asian city based. Whilst I have run some mountain trails in Dalat and Sapa Vietnam, none compare. This marathon is simply breath taking, every corner you turn offers a new stunning panorama. With under 200 participants it is a very personal and fun experience. I ran the first half with my 14 year old daughter and as she approached mile 20, I reminded her of how lucky we were to be here, to be healthy and to be able to run in such a incredible environment. In previous marathons the last few miles are a mental challenge, here the experience is far more serene as the mental duress is extinguished by the splendor if the mountain scenery.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4
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    Profile photo of Kerri Patrick Wertz
    kerri2550 FIRST-TIMER '16

    Difficult in a good way but so beautiful and not crowded! You can just take in all the scenes. The elevation is so high that it stays very cool even … MORE

    Difficult in a good way but so beautiful and not crowded! You can just take in all the scenes. The elevation is so high that it stays very cool even though it is summer. I only struggled with the elevation going uphill, so I just walked up the hills. You do need to be self-reliant in water and food, which is tough sometimes. But wear sunscreen! Sun is brutal! I got burned doing the race pretty badly. The shirts were disappointing. Most shirts are now made with running material but these are cotton. I won’t wear them. I will just use them for a quilt. The medals are very nice, though. I will do this race every year for sure since I live in Montana. It’s a refreshing break from running in the city.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    1
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    Profile photo of Dan Solera
    dansolera FIRST-TIMER '12

    This race bills itself as the highest road marathon in the country. The road itself is crushed gravel, so it's a far cry from asphalt or concrete, but the organization … MORE

    This race bills itself as the highest road marathon in the country. The road itself is crushed gravel, so it’s a far cry from asphalt or concrete, but the organization has the hallmarks of a barebones trail race. The logistics are challenging and will require lots of time. Buses pick up from Ennis, Montana and drive about an hour to the finish line, then drive another 45 minutes to the start. The half is a point-to-point and is always either climbing or descending. But the views you get in the process, including some excellent panoramas of the imposing Black Butte, are worth the thin air. Generic medals and not much of a post-race spread though.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    2
    My Report
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    1

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