Overall Rating
Overall Rating (3 Reviews)
4
(3 Ratings)(3 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
1.7
SCENERY
4.3
PRODUCTION
4.3
SWAG
2.3
The Rails to Trails Marathon route follows the Elroy-Sparta bike trail. The starting point and finish point are one in the same and located in the Village park. There is a turn around point for the marathoners, everything is well marked and there will be volunteers there and at the … MORE
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Recent reviews

    Profile photo of Aaron Shaw
    shawa2007 FIRST-TIMER '17

    Start in the small town of Norwalk and run on the Sparta Trail, a 'rails-to-trail' route with two 100+ year old train tunnels. The course has a zero net elevation … MORE

    Start in the small town of Norwalk and run on the Sparta Trail, a ‘rails-to-trail’ route with two 100+ year old train tunnels. The course has a zero net elevation gain/lose.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    lassieandmax FIRST-TIMER '17

    This is a great little race. But be aware - its small. If you want fan support, this is not your event. There are virtually no fans along the course. … MORE

    This is a great little race. But be aware – its small. If you want fan support, this is not your event. There are virtually no fans along the course.

    In terms of value, this event is good. Registration is inexpensive and includes the spaghetti dinner the night before and post-race chicken barbecue. The Ladies auxiliary has a bake sale at the event as well. This event has a small, hometown vibe that makes its special. Running through the old 3/4 mile train tunnel is really cool, and its lit with red lanterns as to not disturb the bats. I brought my knuckle lights but I didn’t need them.

    Swag is nothing to write home about. I’m not a big fan of their logo, and the medal, if thats your thing, is small. There are AG winners for each event. I think the award is just a ribbon, not anything unique or showy. This course is a Boston Qualifier and is pancake flat. The course is crushed gravel and is largely shaded. Hydration table volunteers are supportive and work hard. When I ran it, they did not have professional race photographer outside the tunnel, which would have made for a very cool picture. I hope they add that in the future.

    This is the primary fundraiser for the town of Norwalk. Funds are used for municipal support and the like (I think I heard one year they used funds to help buy a fire truck for the town). Parking is in the park by the start/finish line and easy to find. Race Day registration is available. Stay in Tomah (20 min drive) for more hotel options. The committee works hard to put this event on and you can tell, but its not done by runners, just townsfolk who want to create an attraction in their area. Overall, I like this event, but I can’t imagine running a full marathon there.

    I hope they continue to have this event and add a few details to make this event comparable to what runners would expect at a race.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    1
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    bioprofsd FIRST-TIMER '16

    This was run on the scenic Elroy to Sparta rail trail. The course started in the town of Norwalk and included a short out-and-back to the west and then a … MORE

    This was run on the scenic Elroy to Sparta rail trail. The course started in the town of Norwalk and included a short out-and-back to the west and then a longer out-and-back to the east. The second out-and-back included a 3/4 mile long tunnel. Because of hibernating bats, the tunnel was lit by red lanterns spaced at about 20-meter intervals, which made it a little hard to see. The trail goes through scenic, rolling farmland, although the trail is leveled out so that the grade is gradual. There were plenty of aid stations, and the race registration included a sphagetti dinner with free craft beer the night before, and lunch with free beer after the race. It was well-worth the price of the registration.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3
    My Media

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