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The Desert RATS Trail Running Festival by UTMB®

The 2023 UTMB World Series continues with the Desert RATS Trail Running Festival in beautiful western Colorado running from April 14-16. The 2023 edition of the Desert RATS Trail Running Festival by UTMB® marks the 20th anniversary of the event. Runners will get to experience scenic views of the Coloradan mesa, the mighty Colorado River, and other highlights along the Western Rim as they make their climb in either of the 5 races.

Event Schedule:

The race weekend will kick-off on Friday, April 14 with the 100K in Fruita, Colo. at the Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead and conclude with the 10K race on Sunday, April 16. Full event schedule details can be found below.

Friday, April 14

  • 100K
    • Start Time – 5 a.m.
    • Start Location – Fruita, Co. Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead
    • Distance: 62 Miles | Elevation: 6,205+ FT
    • Course: This beautiful out and back hits some of the fantastic highlights of the famous Kokopelli Trail including the stunning flowy singletrack of the Western Rim. Runners will be challenged with an epic mesa climb, then rewarded with endless views.

Saturday, April 15

  • 50K
    • Start Time – 7 a.m.
    • Start Location – Fruita, Co. Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead
    • Distance: 31 Miles | Elevation: 3,639+ FT
    • Course: The 50K follows the marathon course with the bonus miles on the fast and fun Rustlers Loop.
  • 42K
    • Start Time – 8 a.m.
    • Start Location – Fruita, Co. Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead
    • Distance: 26.1 Miles | Elevation: 3,580+ FT
    • Course: An equally fun and challenging trail marathon on the stunning Kokopelli Loops in the Mack Ridge area. The race is a loop through some of the most beautiful desert terrain in the world, following the rim far above the Colorado River.
  • Festival Basecamp Party celebrating 20 years
    • Start Time – 5 p.m.
    • Location: Civic Center Park

Sunday, April 16

  • 25K
    • Start Time – 8:30 a.m.
    • Start Location – Fruita, Co. Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead
    • Distance: 13 Miles | Elevation: 1,540+ FT
    • Course: The half marathon is a loop with all of the views and rugged desert terrain of the longer courses. It was recognized as one of the most scenic half marathons by Active and fully deserves the title.
  • 10K
    • Start Time – 9 a.m.
    • Start Location – Fruita, Co. Mack Exit Hawkeye Trailhead
    • Distance: 6.2 Miles | Elevation: 600+ FT
    • Course: The 10K is a lollipop course with 600’ of elevation gain. It’s the best bang for your buck overlooking the narrow canyons and the Colorado River views on Steve’s Loop.
  • Kids Race
    • Start Time – 9:15 a.m.
    • Signup and Start/Finish – Hawkeye Trailhead off of Mack Exit
    • Free to sign up

*All times listed are in MT

For full course details, visit Race Details on the List of Races page for Desert RATS online.

Elite Field
Jonathan Rea, Craig Hunt, Yutaro Yokouchi  are the top three men’s favourites and Devon Yanko, Arden Young, Meredith Edwards are likely to be near the front at the finish.

UTMB® World Series
UTMB® World Series is the world’s ultimate trail-running circuit that unites the sport’s biggest stars and passionate runners through the best, leading international events in the most stunning locations.  Built on a passion for the mountains with sustainability at its heart, UTMB® World Series gives all trail runners the chance to experience the UTMB® adventure across the world, with events taking place across Asia, Oceania, Europe, Africa and the Americas. It is the only place where runners can begin their quest to UTMB® Mont-Blanc, France, where the prestigious UTMB® World Series Finals will be held. For more information, visit

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