Monday, May 4th, 2015
A New Course for Ski to Sea Kicks Off the 2015 Spring/Summer Race Season in Bellingham WA
Todd Elsworth

Each weekend in Bellingham/Whatcom County there is inevitably a race or some fun outdoors event that brings the community and visitors together to enjoy sports and our recreational bounty. The “Grand Daddy” of them all is the iconic Ski to Sea Race, watch the Ski to Sea -Continue the Legacy video to get a sense of the grandeur of the event.

Founded in 1973 by Bellingham Chamber of Commerce committee member and Olympic medal winning skier, Franz Gabl. Gabl, wanting to revive the 1911 Mount Baker Marathon drew inspiration from a multi-sport relay in Switzerland. As a result, the Ski to Sea Race is a draw for people from around the globe. Read The Bellingham Herald’s story: Olympic medalist Franz Gabl barreled down the slopes and through life.

Sunday, May 25
Ski to Sea
The Ski to Sea Race is a multi-sport relay race open to all persons 15 years or older. A team consists of 8 racers (2 in the canoe leg) for the seven race legs. Pick Your Leg!


2015 Ski to Sea COURSE Update:
This year proves to be a bit different for the racers. The lack of snow in the Northwest and at the Mount Baker Ski Area has forced a re-routing of the course. This is a simple overview of the 2015 Ski to Sea Course:

Leg 1. Pandome Mountain Run
Leg 2. Run Down 542
Leg 3.  Road Bike to Everson
Leg 4. Canoe the Nooksack
Leg 5. Cross Country Bike
Leg 6. Sea Kayak Bellingham Bay
Leg 7. Chuckanut Mountain Bike

View the Full Size Map

Ski to Sea Map
Executive Director, Pete Coy exclaims, “With the changes we have made to the 2015 Ski to Sea course we feel like this may be the most exciting and memorable Ski to Sea Race ever. We look forward to seeing you on Race day.” Best of luck to you and your teams!

Here is a full list of races and events in Bellingham for June through August 2015. Take your pick!

Saturday, June 7
Girls on the Run Spring 5K
Girls on the Run encourages positive emotional, social, mental and physical development. Participants explore and discuss their own beliefs around experiences and challenges girls face at this age. Designed to allow every girl to recognize her inner strength, the Girls on the Run curriculum inspires girls to define their lives on their own terms.

Saturday, June 21
Bellingham Canoe and Kayak Sprint Races

Bellingham Canoe and Kayak Sprint Races – Bellingham Regatta is open to sprint canoe and kayak, surfski, OC, and SUP. There will be 200m, 500m, 1000m, 2K and 5K races.The Regatta is open to all ages.

Saturday, June 27
Lake Padden Triathlon

The Padden Triathlon is an excellent first, second or twenty-second triathlon. Our course is simple, beautiful and well staffed. In an effort to make this a race you’ll enjoy year after year, we’ve made everything as simple as possible, so on race day you can focus on the event. Our goal is to make the Padden Triathlon the best organized, most affordable, chip timed event you’ll do all summer.

Sunday, June 28
Bellingham KIDS Traverse
Starting and finishing in Civic Stadium, the Bellingham KIDS Traverse course offers a 1 mi. Run through Salmon Woods; 1.5 mi. Mountain Bike around Civic and Geri Fields; .5 mi. Obstacle Course inside Civic Stadium; .25 mi Team TREK to Mallard Ice Cream Finish Line.KIDSTraverse

Thursday, July 2 – 5
Northwest Tandem Rally
The Northwest Tandem Rally has traveled extensively throughout the northwest since 1986. The event is traditionally held either on Memorial Day weekend or Fourth of July weekend. It is produced as an all-volunteer event, designed to be family oriented, grassroots and affordable. It will be hosted in Bellingham in 2015.


Saturday, July 11
Chuckanut Footrace
Chuckanut Footrace– This point-to-point, seven-mile trail race starts at Marine Park in south Bellingham and finishes at Larrabee State Park, the oldest state park in Washington. The course follows the legendary Interurban Trail, which threads through the Chuckanut Mountains and features gorgeous views of Chuckanut Bay and the San Juan Islands. View the course map here. Buses will take runners back to the finish line and will leave with regularity. The finish-line party at Larrabee State Park will include live music, food, and drink. Age-group awards will be given, three deep in each five-year category. Top three male and female finishers will also be recognized.

Friday, July 17 – Saturday, July 18
RAGNAR – Northwest Passage
RAGNAR – Northwest Passage– For centuries, explorers, Vikings, and adventurers sought to navigate the illusive Northwest Passage. Today, a similarly daunting journey takes place for participants of the Ragnar Relay Northwest Passage! You’ll begin your journey in the city of Blaine, then run relay style from point to point along a course designed by runners for runners. The gently rolling countryside will offer spectacular views, charming shops and quaint villages, and a peaceful starry night sky above. Runners traverse all the way to the coast where they will cross Deception Pass and finish in Langely, WA where the festivities of the Ragnar Finish Line await your team. This course is designed for runners who love to take it all in, and we are limiting the number of teams allowed to 500. This late summer adventure Will Sell Out, so get in and secure your team’s spot today!

Saturday, July 18
Tour de Whatcom
Tour de Whatcom– The rides are awesome. You get to see everything: Mt Baker, Lake Whatcom, valleys, rivers, lush farmland, beaches and Puget Sound all in one fairly level ride. In 2015, the beneficiary of your ride will be the WMBC-Whatcom Mountain Bike Coalition.


Saturday, July 25
Kulshan Quest Adventure Race
Kulshan Quest Adventure Race will challenge people paddling on the waters of Bellingham Bay and trail running and mountain biking in the forests of Chuckanut Mountains and Fairhaven. Using sea kayaks, mt. bikes, and your trusty old feet, you will navigate a series of checkpoints using only map and compass to make your way from start to finish.


Saturday, August 1
Agape 5K Walk & Run
Run or walk the Lake Padden loop or choose the 5K route which includes some less traveled trails around the lake. Lighthouse Mission’s Agape Home shelters 50 women and children a night, providing a safe haven for women looking to get back on their feet again.

Sunday, August 2
Northwest Run-Archery Classic
Hamster Endurance Running is directing the first Run-Archery competition in the US. Competitive and Novice categories.  Bringing together two great sports in this biathlon style adventure.  Family friendly, with special family and youth pricing.  The event benefits National Archery in Schools Program and Girls on the Run.

Sunday, August 2
Bellingham Youth Triathlon
Bellingham Youth Triathlon has been initiating kids to the sport of triathlon since 1999. We work hard to create an environment of accomplishment for everyone involved. Each participant is awarded a medal as they cross the finish line, we encourage everyone to stay for the prize drawing at the finish where pretty much everyone wins something fun.

Saturday, August 15 – Sunday, August 16
Ride from Seattle to Vancouver BC & Party – Enjoy 188 miles of scenic back roads (106 miles/3500′ on day one and 82 miles/2400′ on day two). You start at the north end of the University of Washington’s E1 parking lot and finish in downtown Vancouver, Canada, the next day. The finish line festival includes a no-host bar, barbecue and music.

They liked the ride so much, they’re offering it TWICE in ONE WEEKEND!  RSVP 1 leaves Seattle on Friday and parties on Saturday.  RSVP 2 leaves Seattle on Saturday and parties on Sunday!  Look closely when registering to be sure that you have signed up for the right one.

Saturday, August 15 – Sunday, August 16
Hamster Endurance Runs
Hamster Endurance Runs– Once again, runners will be able to choose a 6, 12 , or 24 hr option, and run laps around beautiful Lake Padden during that time period.

Sunday, August 16
Color Run Bellingham

Color Run Bellingham– It’s coming! Experience the Shine Tour. A team is 4+ friends running, laughing, and dancing through the course together. You don’t need a full team to get started! Get yourself signed up today and then round up your team!  Encourage them to signup ASAP…creating a team does not hold or reserve spots.  The event can sell out at any time.

Sunday, August 23
Doggie Dash 5K Fun Run/Walk
Calling all Super Dogs! Bring your Super Human Friends for a dash around Lake Padden to help benefit the Whatcom Humane Society. Competitors: Top Dog prizes awarded to the top finishers in the men’s, women’s, over 60 and kids divisions. Non-Competitors: Enjoy a jog or walk around the lake.

Saturday, August 29
Muds to Suds

Muds to Suds– 22 Dirty Obstacles, including 8 mud pits that combine athletic stamina and your child hood fantasy of playing in the mud.  You will need endurance to complete the approximately 2.5 mile course, humility to wallow in the mud and a smile to show off at the finish line!



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About the Author:

As the co-Executive Director of Recreation Northwest and the founder of the Bellingham Traverse, Todd promotes outdoor recreation and brings people together to enjoy, preserve and improve the places where we play. He enjoys biking, hiking, paddling, skiing and will try anything twice. Get connected at

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