Lake Mead's Boulder Beach
Lake Mead's Boulder Beach.
The dam’s distinctive pale concrete arch is known across the nation, and runners get their chance to see its Nevada side — it connects Nevada with Arizona — after following the Historic Railroad Hiking Trail all the way to the Hoover Dam parking lot. Runners will traverse the Mojave Desert running through historic railroad tunnels perched atop of a sweet view of Lake Mead. The "Money Shot" comes at your turn around with an expansive view of Hoover Dam & the newly completed Bypass Bridge. No need to "stop and glance"- you get a great view without breaking your stride.
Start your race at Lake Mead's Boulder Beach, Special Events Beach at the BBQ area.
The first 1/4 mile is a steady gradual uphill along a wide roadway, giving plenty of room for runners to find their position among the field before making a left hand turn onto the paved River Mountains Loop Trail. This section of the River Mountains Loop Trail is impeccably paved and about 12' wide, running parallel to Lakeshore Drive. The course is undulating through the spectacular Mojave Desert and joins up with the Historic Railroad Tunnel Trail just before your mile 3. This section of trail is breathtaking! Runners will traverse a hard packed dirt trail leading through several old railroad tunnels that were used in the 1930s to transport supplies to the workers in the construction of the then Boulder Dam- now Hoover Dam. The trail is perched atop of a ridge overlooking the crystal blue waters of Lake Mead and the marina.
After passing through the last tunnel, the next mile is through an area which is home to power plants- Hoover Dam is the main producer of electricity for Nevada, Arizona, and California. This is just a prelude to the "Money Shot"! Runners will zig zag their way down 6 switch backs landing onto the upper level parking garage at Hoover Dam. There is then a counterclockwise loop along the edge for a great view of the awe inspiring Hoover Dam and Bypass Bridge.
With the Dam now behind them, the Marathon and Half Marathoners will retrace their steps back up the switch backs, through the tunnels overlooking Lake Mead, then back on the paved trail. Arriving back at Boulder Beach access road runners will continue straight continuing along the paved River Mountains Loop Trail to the turn around roughly 0.6 of a mile ahead, then back to Boulder Beach.
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