Overall Rating
Overall Rating (3 Reviews)
3.3
(3 Ratings)(3 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
2
SCENERY
3.3
PRODUCTION
3.7
SWAG
3
The Run to Read Half Marathon is a double out and back on 2 rail trails. The first trail, about 5 miles long, is paved & goes through the historic & restored Meredith Tunnel. The second trail is on crushed limestone & has a scenic view of the Monongahela River. … MORE
Local Weather (Jan 09):
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H (°F) 39 55 43 40 32
L (°F) 21 20 24 28 7
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Recent reviews

    tdnewman FIRST-TIMER '21

    I entered this race just looking to stay in condition. I was not well prepared, but relatively local winter race was hard to pass up. Race this year was limited … MORE

    I entered this race just looking to stay in condition. I was not well prepared, but relatively local winter race was hard to pass up. Race this year was limited to a low number of participants. The start was staggered, based on expected finish time. Due to this, there was plenty of racing room, never really bothered by crowding. There were times that I was racing alone, with no other runner in sight. Water stations were well spaced and staff was friendly and helpful. Swag was fine, nothing to get excited about. Entry fee was very reasonable. I will compete again next year, and hopefully do better. One should be able to get a good time in this race.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    3

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    seagroves87 FIRST-TIMER '21

    This is an annual race in Northern West Virginia just outside Morgantown that raises money for literacy. This was a very convenient way for me to check off West Virginia … MORE

    This is an annual race in Northern West Virginia just outside Morgantown that raises money for literacy. This was a very convenient way for me to check off West Virginia as it is only about a 5 and half hour drive from Rochester and was the only half marathon I could find in driving distance this weekend. This year due to covid the race was strictly capped at 250 runners but generally there are not more runners than that so it is on the smaller side but not too small. There was lots of pre-race communication both on email and facebook. Would recommend joining the facebook group if you are interested in the race. There was actually a lot of hotel options nearby in Fairmont and driving there was easy. You could also stay in Morgantown as well. This race is about a 1.5 hour drive from Pittsburgh if you are a 50 stater who is looking to fly to the race. The race starts at 1pm when it is warmest as it had been very cold some years. Also just as a warning to those potentially planning to run this race in past years it had to be postponed twice due to the bad weather. This year though the weather was perfect. It was sunny and just above freezing. With the sun I was very comfortable in a long sleeve running shirt, hat and leggings and never cold. The 1pm start made pre-race fueling a little difficult and even worse it was the same time as the Bills game which I had to listen to during my run. This race is on two non-technical trails at Prickett Fort State Park. Parking was very easy in a large parking lot. This year absolutely everything was outside due to covid which made the race feel quite safe and I’m sure the RD and volunteers appreciated the nice weather. Packet included bib and shirt as long as you signed up by the shirt deadline which I did. Shirt is long-sleeved and technical. It is a little plain but it is a nice navy color. I will definitely use it. The start of the race had looser covid protocols than the races I’ve done in NY and NH but overall it was better than I expected for West Virginia. Participants were asked to start in groups of 50 based on self-seeded predicted finish times and groups were set off every couple minutes with faster runners first to avoid as much passing. Participants seemed to be following this pretty well and race was chipped timed so there was no advantage to starting up front. The first 4.5 miles are an out and back on a paved trail. This trail was very easy to run on. In terms of scenery it was pretty enough but definitely would have been more scenic if there was snow (although I’m glad there wasn’t) or in the fall when leaves are changing color. During this portion you go through a tunnel. I thought it might be cool to run through the tunnel but it was dimly lit (but bright enough that you don’t need additional lights), damp, creepy and kind of smelly. But after a pretty dark week, running towards the light at the end of the tunnel seemed kind of symbolic. You then leave the tunnel and go to the turnaround point which is the 1st aid station. Aid stations included little water bottles (I carried by own so didn’t use) and cups of Endure Fuel electrolyte drink. The electrolyte drink was watermelon flavored and maybe it’s just me but I thought it was absolutely disgusting. There were aid stations every approximately 2.5 miles. Personally I would prefer more aid stations so I would recommend carrying water if you need it more frequently than that. You then run back on the paved trail to another out and back on a non-technical gravel trail. Definitely don’t need trail shoes but may want ankle gaiters as I got a lot of rocks and grit in my shoes. This trail follows the river and was prettier but again not spectacular. It was a peaceful run though. I also did love the mile markers they were these adorable book worm mile markers. Both trails had very low grade elevation change but I wouldn’t call it pancake flat as I felt like most of the race there was either a slight incline or decline but definitely about the flattest race you can find in West Virginia. You then turn around and run back to the finish line where you get your medal. Medal is wooden and a little simple with just a plain string for ribbon but I do like that they are two sided one side with the race logo and the other with an image of West Virginia making it a nice medal for 50 staters. There is chili, water, powerade and a grab bag of snacks at the end. Love that they had a vegan chili option. Grab bag included a banana, cookies, saltines for the chili and a sample of the watermelon endurance fuel which I am never going to use. My time was fine. I just met my goal of under 2:30 but feel like I should have been faster on such an easy course but I had trouble getting a good pace on the trail and the late start made me feel a little sluggish. I also could see this being a potentially difficult race if the weather didn’t cooperate which is why I marked 2 star difficulty. Overall I thought this was a fine race. I don’t have any major complaints (other than gross electrolyte drink which is a very minor issue) but there also wasn’t anything that made this particularly special compared to other halves I’ve done other than it being in West Virginia. It was a nice, smaller, well-produced race that raises money for a good cause so I would definitely recommend it to locals and think it is a solid and pretty convenient option for 50 staters. I’m not sure I would drive 5.5 hours to this race again in a normal year with more races to choose from but I am very happy to have done it this year and get another half in and a new state.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    3

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    MadelynMarino FIRST-TIMER '17

    This was a small race, apex 250 people. Because the race is held in January it starts at 1pm in the afternoon. I was excited that we would be able … MORE

    This was a small race, apex 250 people. Because the race is held in January it starts at 1pm in the afternoon. I was excited that we would be able to sleep in a little.

    This year the race was touch and go because of snow forecasts. By mid-week, I still wasn’t sure if the race was going to happen. The alternative plan was to move it to the following weekend, which wouldn’t work for me. Finally on Friday morning the race directors gave us the green light that the race was still one. I have to give a ton of credit to the race director, because even though it did snow the day before he worked tirelessly to clear a lot of the snow.
    The morning of the race the temperature was 16 degrees with a “real feel” of 9 degrees. I knew that morning I would need some additional items. We drove to a CVS and I bought a scarf and the small heat warmers that you put in gloves.

    The first couple of miles were on an out and back paved road. Most of the path was covered in a layer of snow, making it difficult to land properly. The second half of the race was an out and back on a paved trail. There were two tire paths in the snow that were used as a running path. The views were beautiful including snow covered trees and branches. We also, ran along various lakes and rives. It was very scenic.

    The race itself was a little difficult given the weather conditions. Even with the heat warmers in my gloves, it was very cold. That also made it difficult for breathing. That said, I am happy with my finish time.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    4
    My Report
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    M_Sohaskey Feb 09, 2017 at 7:33pm

    9 degrees?? YIKES, I can see how the lungs might struggle with air that cold. Smart call on the hand warmers, probably one of the smartest race day purchases ever… MORE

    9 degrees?? YIKES, I can see how the lungs might struggle with air that cold. Smart call on the hand warmers, probably one of the smartest race day purchases ever made. Glad you were able to run on snow rather than ice – as tough as fighting through snow can be, ice is obviously just dangerous. And as tough as the chill was, it would've been tougher to travel to WV just to see the race get canceled, so glad it all worked out. Props to the hard-working race director who's willing to shovel snow to clear his course. Thanks for the "cool" review, Madelyn! :) LESS

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