BADWATER Salton Sea Race Route

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The BADWATER Salton Sea route is 81 miles from Salton City (elevation 125 feet below sea level) to Palomar Mountain, the tallest mountain in San Diego County (finish line elevation: 5500 feet above sea level.) There is a total elevation gain of over 9000 feet. Eight of the 81 race miles pass through Anza-Borrego State Park on the California Riding and Hiking Trail from near Borrego Springs to near Ranchita, so this race is a mix of road and trail. What's more, for much of the race, participants will run on the dirt shoulder next to the road, or an adjacent trail, so half or more of the distance will be on unpaved running surfaces.


Click the map above to see it larger.


Click here for the detailed route sheet with all landmarks, directions, time station locations, and more.


Below are several links to the route. The event will finish at the Upper Meadow Lodge, a private lodge which we are renting to use as the finish line and post-race party location.

Route on Strava, recorded during the 2013 race by Jimmy Dean Freeman of the winning Team Coyotes

Detail of the Trail Section of the Route (California Riding and Hiking Trail) on Chris Kostman's Strava

Route on RideWithGPS.com (ignore the last four miles)


Click here for images of the start line and the first six miles of the race route, along the Salton Sea shoreline in Salton City.

Click here for images of the route from the edge of Salton City (mile 7) to Borrego Springs Resort (mile 35).

Click here for images of the trail section of the route through Anza-Borrego Desert State Park from Borrego Springs (mile 45.5) to almost Ranchita (mile 49).

Click here for images of the route from Ranchita (mile 50) to the finish at Palomar Mountain (mile 81).


We will have Time Stations located along the route at the following locations:

• Mile 14.4 USN Microwave Tower

• Mile 35.1 Borrego Springs Resort (Also: Day One Race HQ)

• Mile 40.55 Dirt parking lot for California Riding and Hiking Trail lower trailhead

• Mile 46.0 Intersection of Culp Valley Road and California Riding and Hiking Trail

• Mile 50.2 Ranchita Country Store at 37552 Montezuma Valley Rd., 92066

• Mile 68 Lake Henshaw Resort at 26439 California 76, 92070 (Self-serve; phone the finish line as you pass)

• Mile 81 Finish Line at Upper Meadow Lodge at 33350 Upper Meadow Road 92060


Click the map above to see it larger.


Above: Elevation Profile of the race route from the start below sea level at Salton Sea (left side) to Palomar Mountain (on right side.)