Spanning the Columbia River on foot

Bridge of the Gods run frames the beauty of the Gorge

The Bridge of the Gods Half Marathon and 10K races begin with a breathtaking sprint across the Columbia River from Washington into Oregon. The bridge stretches 1,858 feet across and stands 140 above the river. The grated road allows runners and walkers to see the rushing water below their feet.

Bridge of the Gods run

Sunday, Aug. 10

There is no parking at the starting line of this event

Shuttle buses will take participants from Marina Park, in Cascade Locks, to the Washington side of the bridge

Buses run from 6 to 7:30 a.m.

Half marathon starts at 8 a.m., $65

10K begins at 8:20 a.m., $50

Register at www.bridgeofthego...

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Bridge of the Gods half marathoners get to climb the Stairway to Heaven, along the Historic Columbia River Highway Trail.

Local Racing Calendar

In addition to the Bridge of the Gods Run, below is sampling of some of the other upcoming races in the local area:

• TreeSong Wild Family Run; Saturday, July 26, at North Bonneville Park;

www.treesongnatureawareness.org

• Lacamas Lake Half Marathon; Sunday, July 27, in downtown Camas;

www.lacamaslakerunwalk.com

• Spartan Sprint; Saturday, Aug. 2, at Washougal Motocross Park; www.spartanrace.c...

• Race for the Homeless; Saturday, Aug. 2, at Officer’s Row, Vancouver;

www.raceforthehomeless.org

• Vancouver Color Vibe; Saturday, Aug. 16, at the Clark County Event Center;

www.thecolorvibe.com/vancouver_wa.php

• Run or Dye; Saturday, Sept. 13, in Portland, Ore.;

www.runordye.com/locations/Portland#.U6IbP_ldV8E

• Girlfriend’s Run for a Cure; Sunday, Oct. 12, at Officer’s Row, Vancouver;

www.nwpersonaltraining.com/subs/events/event_details.php?event_id=295

An iconic landmark in the Columbia River Gorge is the centerpiece for the Bridge of the Gods Half Marathon and 10K Sunday, Aug. 10.

Up to 1,000 runners and walkers will cross the 1,858-foot steel masterpiece from Washington into Oregon and work their way to the finish line at Thunder Island, in Cascade Locks. The grated road along the bridge allows participants to see the Columbia River flowing beneath their feet.

“With the five-hour time limit provided, we hope that even the most competitive runners will stop and look down, look across and look in all directions,” said Joanie Thompson, marketing director for Breakaway Promotions, in Hood River. “It should be an amazing morning of scenery, fitness and accomplishment all framed at that finish line.”

Breakaway Promotions organizes a variety of races throughout the Gorge year round. Thompson and Racing Director Chad Sperry hope this Bridge of the Gods event becomes a signature of the summer.

“The event is truly intended to provide a platform that anyone can come out and participate. That is why we are offering both a half marathon as well as a 10K and walking categories for both,” Sperry said. “We also pass so many historic landmarks that showcase the Gorge and the things that make it unique and beautiful. Everything from sweeping views of Beacon Rock and Bonneville Dam to crossing the historic highway bridges at Eagle Creek and Tanner Creek. We are showcasing scenery and history.”

After crossing the bridge, the course takes runners and walkers along the Historic Columbia River Highway Trail out to just west of the new Moffett Creek Bridge and back. Along this route, they will cross Ruckle Creek, Eagle Creek, Tanner Creek and Moffett Creek before turning around and heading to Cascade Locks. The race continues through town to Marina Park, and then across the pedestrian bridge to the finish line at Thunder Island. All of the finishers will be rewarded with a medal and a stunning viewpoint of the Bridge of the Gods from the island.

“I think they will be completely blown away,” Sperry said. “The finish is pretty unique and beautiful. How often do you get to finish a race on an island in the middle of the Columbia River?”

Thompson said this event is filling up fast. Close to 700 runners and walkers have already registered. It will be capped off at 1,000 people because the bridge can only be closed for 45 minutes.

“I think we can hit pretty darn close to that 1,000 and hopefully expand it in the future,” Thompson said. “We hope people see this as a new experience to enjoy the nature of the Gorge. We’re here because we love it and we’re passionate about showcasing it, while doing a healthy activity at the same time.”