Hundreds expected to race into Lassen County
Hundreds of runners from all over the world are expected to flock to Lassen County to participate in the Bizz Johnson Marathon on Saturday, Oct. 12 and Sunday, Oct. 13. The marathon is in its eighth year and is a qualifier for the Boston Marathon. File photo
Oct. 10 — It’s that time of the year again. Hundreds of people will flock to Lassen County on the weekend of Saturday, Oct. 12 and Sunday, Oct. 13 to be a part of the Bizz Johnson Marathon.
The famous race, now in its eighth year, is a qualifier for the Boston Marathon and draws runners from all over the world.
The Bizz Johnson Marathon course is best known for its smooth combination of road and trail racing, as well as its beautiful views of the Susan River Canyon and route through old train tunnels.
The race is organized by Coastal Trail Runs, a Bay Area based company that puts on races throughout California. Each year the company acquires permits from the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management for use of the trail, then rents the space at the historic railroad depot in Susanville, which is used to check in runners prior to the races.
Lassen Land and Trails Trust also holds its annual Rails to Trails Festival the same weekend each year.
“We coincide (with the marathon) and offer runners and their friends and families with something else to do while awaiting their runner … it’s a nice partnership,” Louise Jensen, Executive Director at Lassen Land and Trails Trust, said.
Several races will take place during the marathon weekend. However, the only race taking place on Saturday is the express half marathon, which begins at 8 a.m. at the Goumaz Trailhead and ends at Hobo Camp. The express half marathon course covers the second half of the full marathon.
On Sunday, the 50K race begins at 8 a.m. and the marathon, 10K and half marathon begin at 9 a.m. The 10K and half marathon start across the street from the historic railroad depot in Susanville. The marathon and 50K start near Westwood at the Mason Station trailhead. All races end at Hobo Camp.
The Rails to Trails Festival will take place from 12 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12 at the historic railroad depot. Everyone, including marathon participants and spectators, can enjoy food, beverages, live music, children’s activities, handcar races, a chili cook-off and a salsa contest.
For more information on the Bizz Johnson Marathon, visit coastaltrailruns.com/bizz_johnson.html.