September 19, 2021

A true trail run through the beautiful and

challenging Castlewood Canyon State Park,

south of metro Denver, Colorado.


Limited to 300 Participants

BackgroundBackground & Venue

Castlewood Canyon is a hidden treasure for hikers and trail runners.  The Park is a Colorado Natural Area providing abundant wildlife, plant, and geologic viewing opportunities. The theme of the Run, a surprising remnant of local history, is on display at the ruins of Castlewood Dam. This historic dam burst during a storm in 1933, sending a wave of water flooding into Denver.  Runners participating in the 10K run will pass this unexpected window to the past, as well as the historic Lucas Homestead site.

2021 marks the 8th annual Dam Run at Castlewood Canyon State Park


The Dam Run is a fundraising event.  All profits will benefit Castlewood Canyon State Park. Your participation will help us protect and preserve this special place in our community.

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BackgroundVirtual Run Distance & Timing


10K :  This run is long at approximately 6.5 miles. A true trail run with variety of terrain and nearly no asphalt.

5K :  This run is short at approximately 3.0 miles.

Both runs will begin and end at the Canyon Point parking lot at Castlewood Canyon


Get Trail Map Here

Find Prior Years Results Here



A Hopeful Look at This Year's Dam Run

With the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, it’s been a long year and a half, and for many, their toes are itching to run.  What better place to “scratch that itch” than with the annual Dam Run at Castlewood Canyon! Following up on our 2020 virtual run where participants came out as individuals and ran their own race at a time of their choosing, we are anticipating a more “normal” event in September 2021.  While the virtual run was an adaptation to address the new Covid-19 pseudo normal, we’re hoping to get back to our traditional run format for 2021 (and... hopefully with some kind of breakfast offering, too!).  

The 8th annual Dam Run at Castlewood Canyon is targeted for Sunday, September 19, 2021.  Stay tuned as we begin finalizing our planning for this year’s event.  The jury is still out on the final format of this year’s run in September, as everything Covid seems to be in a state of flux.  We definitely anticipate having another joyous and challenging run this fall.

So, keep moving, be safe and get out on the trail when you feel comfortable to do so and we will see what format this falls run will take.  We’ll be sure to provide further information by the end of May.



Register will be available online.

Park entrance fees are NOT included with registration.

When registering online, there may be a small processing fee added to the registration fee.


All finishers will be rewarded with a "Friends of Castlewood Canyon" buff!  After the Dam Run, be sure to post your best run pictures on Facebook and tag Castlewood Canyon State Park!


There are no refunds.


On the morning of the Dam Run, please enter at Castlewood Canyon State Park's main entrance which is located 5 miles south of Franktown on Highway 83. Your park entrance fee is NOT included in your race entry, so you will need to pay at the window. The start and finish lines will be at the Canyon Point parking lot. Proceed to the Canyon Point parking lot.  


Participants will park at Canyon Point parking lot.  If the Canyon Point parking lot is full, there are several smaller parking lots nearby. Please refer to the Castlewood Canyon State Park Map for more detailed information on location of parking lots. 

​​Course descriptions:

The 10K - This trail run is all about variety of terrain on the trails! A true trail run - no asphalt here! This challenging race starts and ends at the Canyon Point parking lot.  You will start at the Lake Gulch trail head and run down the Lake Gulch trail to the Dam trail where you will see remnants of the Castlewood Dam.  You will run up a steep incline to Rimrock where you will run along the rim of the canyon. Enjoy the views, but don't take your eyes off the trail for too long - running on the rim rocks is a little tricky! You will then head down a challenging and technical descent to Creek Bottom trail where you will cross Cherry Creek, run along the creek and past the beautiful waterfalls. You will then run back up the Dam trail to Inner Canyon trail, cross the creek and up steep steps to the finish line at the Inner Canyon trail head where we will be cheering for you.


The 5K - For the first 0.8 miles, runners in both events will share the course.  After crossing Cherry Creek at the bottom of Lake Gulch trail, 5K runners will turn right and enter the Inner Canyon trail. At 1.6 miles, after a steep ascent, 5K runners will emerge from the canyon and complete the remainder of the distance on the paved Canyon View Nature Trail.  For the final 0.2 miles, 5K runners will re-join the 10K course to finish in the same location.  


Hikers are welcome on either course and are encouraged to be part of this year's virtual event!


• 5k Registration:     Fee to be announced
• 10k Registration:   Fee to be announced


NO dogs or strollers are allowed on either course.

Additional Information:

More to come!  Stay tuned for updates.

Runner Guidance

More to come!  Stay tuned for updates.

After Your Run:

More to come!  Stay tuned for updates.



All finishers will be rewarded with a "Friends of Castlewood Canyon" buff! 

Number of Participants: Limited to 300

Fastest Times:

While we do see some serious runners at this event, it is a fundraiser and all levels of ability are welcome. Participants walking along at a quick pace are just as appreciated as those trying to achieve a best time. Please join us in enjoying the trails at sunrise!


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