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Cave Creek Thriller

Quick facts

Distance Ultra marathon

About Cave Creek Thriller

The Maricopa Trail winds through the county, connecting the 10 Maricopa County Regional parks on a 315 mile scenic and diverse route. The parks that are connected through the trail are: Buckeye Hills Regional Park, Cave Creek Regional Park, Estrella Mountain Regional Park, Lake Pleasant Regional Park, McDowell Mountain Regional Park, San Tan Mountain Regional Park, South Mountain Regional Park, Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area, Usery Mountain Regional Park and White Tank Mountain Regional Park.

Now in its seventh year, the Cave Creek Thriller plays host to the 50K which explores the Maricopa Trail in a point-to-point race before finishing inside Cave Creek Regional Park. This race is also the first race of the Desert Runner Trail Series hosted by Aravaipa Running. The Cave Creek Thriller 50K is a point to point race that starts at the Agua Fria Trailhead near Lake Pleasant and travels along the Maricopa Trail. The race then enters the Cave Creek Regional Park to finish along the Go John, Quartz & Overton Trails.



  • 50km


  • 30km


  • 10km


  • 5km



Cave Creek Regional Park offers a campground with 38 individual sites and a group camping area. Each site has a large parking area to accommodate up to a 45′ RV and is a “Developed Site,” with water and electrical hook-ups, dump station, a picnic table, a barbecue grill, and fire ring. Cave Creek Regional Park provides clean restrooms with flush toilets and hot water showers.

After Race Services

Post race food.

Aid Stations

Aid stations every 3.0 to 9.1 miles including water, electrolyte drink, sweet snacks, salty snacks, and fruit. Please plan to run with at least two bottles of water.

Award Medals

Awards to the top 3 male & female finishers at each distance. All finishers will receive a pint glass. Points earned in the Desert Runner Trail Series.

Equipment Storage

A drop bag will be allowed at the Anthem Aid station for 50K runners. Please have your drop bag with you on race morning to be collected either at packet pickup or at the actual race start at the Agua Fria TH. They will be transported to the finish line after the Anthem Aid Station closes down around 10:00 AM.

Maximum Time

9.5 hours


The park charges a $6 park entry fee per vehicle. Please arrive early and have correct change (cash) available on race morning for a smooth entry process. Carpool to save. Overflow parking will be available at the horse staging area parking lot or around the Tonalite Drive Loop approximately 1/4 mile from the start/finish area.


Chip Timing


Shuttle Pickup available at Cave Creek Regional Park

Cave Creek Thriller Route Map

Cave Creek Thriller Route Map


Cave Creek Regional Park

Cave Creek,us


Go John, Quartz & Overton Trails

Cave Creek,us


The Tubercular Cabin

Cave Creek Museum

Chiricahua Mountains


50K runners will start at the Agua Fria Trailhead near Lake Pleasant and travel along the Maricopa Trail, a short section of the Black Canyon Trail, pass through Anthem along a desert corridor, climb past Spear S Ranch and finally enter Cave Creek Regional Park to finish along the Go John, Quartz & Overton Trails.

The race information has been found on the official website of the event or through publicly available sources. Always refer to the official website the latest race information. Please let us know if any data is wrong or missing, by emailing us.