Trail running series returns to Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park on Saturday

May 12, 2010

By Contributor

NEW — 10:02 a.m. May 12, 2010

One of the most popular trail-running events in the Pacific Northwest returns to Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park on Saturday.

The eighth-annual Cougar Mountain Trail Running Series kicks off May 15 with a five-mile run — the first of four races on a portion of Cougar Mountain’s scenic trail network.

Runs of seven, 10 and 13 miles are scheduled in the following three months.

Sponsored by the Seattle Running Club, the race series not only introduces hundreds of people to Cougar Mountain’s 36 miles of trails, but it also benefits King County Parks.

Volunteer work groups from the trail-running community spend an average of 120 hours each year doing trail restoration work, including improving trail surface conditions and picking up trash.

“Cougar Mountain is such a great venue for the Seattle running community, and we’re happy to have the continued support of runners who give back to a place where they’re getting a lot of use,” said Scott McCoubrey, head of the Seattle Running Club.

In addition to volunteer labor performed by members of the club, a portion of the trail race registration fees are donated to King County Parks. Of each racer’s individual event fee, $15 goes toward park maintenance and improvements.

More than $70,000 has been raised in the past seven years for King County Parks. The 2009 series raised nearly $12,000 for King County Parks.

“Everyone who visits Cougar Mountain benefits from the work that race volunteers do,” King County Parks Division Director Kevin Brown said. “Our partnership with the Seattle Running Club provides meaningful benefits to everyone who visits Cougar Mountain.”

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Races

Race 1 (5 miles): Saturday, May 15 – 9 a.m.

Race 2 (7 miles): Saturday, June 12 – 9 a.m.

Race 3 (10 miles): Saturday, July 10 – 9 a.m.

Race 4 (13 miles): Saturday, Aug. 14 – 8:30 a.m.

Where

Registration and start will be at the Sky Country trailhead off 166th Way Southeast.

Directions

From Interstate 90 eastbound, take the Lakemont Boulevard Southeast exit (Exit 13). Turn right (south) on Lakemont Boulevard Southeast and drive for approximately two miles. Turn left onto Southeast Cougar Mountain Way. Continue 0.6 miles before turning right onto 166th Way Southeast. Follow this road through the gate and look for the parking lot on the right.

From I-405, take the Coal Creek Parkway exit (Exit 10) and follow Coal Creek Parkway east for 2.4 miles to the shopping center. Turn left at the light onto Southeast 72nd Place. At the stop sign, turn left onto Newcastle Road, which turns into Lakemont Boulevard Southeast. Continue on Lakemont past the Red Town trailhead to Southeast Cougar Mountain Way. Turn right and drive 0.6 miles before turning onto 166th Way Southeast. Follow this road through the gate and look for the parking lot on the right.

Registration

To pre-register for any or all races, print and fill out the 2010 Vasque Cougar Mountain Trail Running Series entry form and mail it to Scott McCoubrey, VCMTRS Race Director, Seattle Running Club, P.O. Box 30730, Seattle, WA 98113-0730.

The cost is $30 each for the five- and seven-mile races; $40 for the 10- and 13-mile races; or $110 for all four races. Seattle Running Club members receive a $5 discount.

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