The Outer Banks is at sea level and the point-to-point course is mainly flat. There are two points of course elevation. The first is in Nags Head Woods Preserve, around mile 12 of the marathon course. The second is crossing the Washington–Baum Bridge leading to Roanoke Island at mile 23.
Begin your journey in historic Kitty Hawk, the birthplace of aviation. Run with the ghosts of the Wright brothers as you meander the Memorial Trail on the edge of the picturesque Albemarle Sound. This part of the course is flat, but don’t run so fast that you miss the incredible Outer Banks scenery. Sea oats, herons, egrets and sound views create a relaxing start to your 26.2-mile-long journey.
After just a few miles you’ll be greeted by the real Outer Banks – the people who make up this warm, close-knit community. Feel the energy boost as they applaud your run down residential Bay Drive on your way toward history.
At mile 8 you’ll run along the base of the famous Wright Brothers Monument, marking the location of the first flight, which took place on Dec. 17, 1903. Look up and you are sure to see planes flying overhead. You’ll be running where flight began! Imagine adding wings to your shoes and take flight.
Just two miles down the road, yet another surprise is in store. Around mile 10, you’ll enter the Nags Head Woods Nature Preserve. This lush maritime forest will amaze you with its understated beauty. All the beauty of trail running, along a well-packed dirt road.
No one said this was going to be easy. At about the 12 1/2 mile, you’ll leave Nags Head Woods on a narrow trail with off-road conditions. Don’t let this short trail slow you down, because you are about to run by the largest sand dune on the East Coast: Jockey’s Ridge State Park. Enjoy the view of hang gliders flying from the mountain of sand and make a mental note to come back later and enjoy the sunset from the top of the ridge. It is breathtaking!
Ready for more water views? You’re in luck! Enjoy Soundside Road in Nags Head. Make sure you look across the water and spot the Washington-Baum Bridge and Roanoke Island. The end is in sight!
Miles 14-22 are flat and fast. Every mile along the marathon course will be marked Outer Banks-style, with mile-marker sponsors providing entertainment every mile. From bands to clowns, to cheering squads, you can look forward to a surprise every mile of the way.
Crossing the Washington-Baum Bridge at mile 23 will be your next challenge. The bridge is tall (stats: 1.05 miles long, 82 feet high, with a 650-foot climb to the top at a 4 percent grade): Be sure to look down. You’ll see charter boats heading out to catch your dinner! An unbelievable view over the Roanoke Sound, and then downhill onto Roanoke Island, where the first English colonists settled in America in 1587.
You’re now just a few short miles to beautiful downtown Manteo. A small-town festival atmosphere awaits you with more cheering crowds to boost your energy for the home stretch to the finish in downtown Manteo and the post-race party!
Participants must pick up their race numbers, packets and timing chips in person. There is no race-day packet pick-up. To pick up packets, registered participants must be prepared to show a valid photo ID or their www.active.com registration confirmation.
Gateway Bank OUTER BANKS MARATHON RACE EXPO
Dare County Youth Center
602 Mustian Street, Kill Devil Hills, NC 27948
Friday, Nov. 11, 2011, 12 noon to 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
To get there, you have two choices:
- Turn west (away from the ocean) from Croatan Highway (U.S. 158) onto Baum Street by Western Sizzlin’, and then take the first right, which will curve onto Mustian. Dare County Family Recreation Park will be immediately on the left, just behind the Outer Banks Brewing Station.
- You may also travel west from U.S. 158 at Ocean Bay Boulevard (Colington Road), which is adjacent to the Wright Brothers National Memorial. From Ocean Bay Boulevard take the first left onto Mustian Street. The park is located just beyond the library and water department, on the right.
Free Start Line Spectator Shuttles
A limited number of shuttles will be available to take spectators from the start to the finish area in downtown Manteo.
Free Finish Line Spectator Shuttles
For finish-line spectators, ample parking and convenient shuttles are available.
Spectator Parking Near Finish
Limited street-side parking is available in downtown Manteo.
Family Reunion Area
Family members and friends can meet up with runners in front of the historic Dare County courthouse on Queen Elizabeth Street after the Finish. Volunteers will be there to make and receive calls for you.
Available at all odd-mile markers along the marathon course, and all even-mile markers along the half-marathon course.
Marathon: Miles 7, 11, 13, 17, 19, 21, 22, 23 and 25
1/2 Marathon: Miles 4, 6, 8, 9, 10 and 12
Gatorade Endurance Formula is the exclusive sports beverage of the Outer Banks Marathon
Assorted flavors of Hammer energy gel will be provided along the course at key locations.
Marathon: Miles 7, 13, 17 and 21
1/2 Marathon: Mile 8
In an effort to provide our runners with the highest quality energy gel, the Gateway Bank Outer Banks Marathon has partnered with Hammer Nutrition.
The Gateway Bank Outer Banks Half-Marathon is the second half of the Outer Banks Marathon course (see above). The half-marathon will begin in Nags Head, near the largest sand dune on the East Coast at Jockey’s Ridge State Park; cross the beautiful Washington-Baum Bridge, and finish on Roanoke Island near where the first English colonists landed in 1587.
The Outer Banks 8k is an out-and-back course that will start in Kill Devil Hills at the First Flight High School track (in front of the grandstand), continue through Nags Head Woods Maritime Forest, and finish at the track. The course is partly on a dirt road and is walker-friendly.
Take the Challenge!
Satisfy your inner pirate and take the Pamlico Jack Challenge or Blackbeard Challenge. Each finisher of the Pamlico Jack Challenge (run or walk the 8k on Saturday and the half-marathon on Sunday) and Blackbeard Challenge (run or walk both the 8k and the marathon) will receive a commemorative pin to recognize your accomplishment.
An out-and-back course (part of the Outer Banks 8k course) that begins at First Flight High School (FFHS) track in Kill Devil Hills, enters and returns along Old Nags Head Woods Road, and finishes at FFHS.
Outer Banks Fun Run
Kids and kids-at-heart will enjoy participating in the one-mile Fun Run, presented by Kelly Hospitality Group. Each participant receives a commemorative T-shirt and finisher medal. Online registration is available, as well as in-person registration at the expo and on race day. For more information, see the Kids & Youth page.