Urban Graffiti, Forest Trails… Scenes From Salomon ‘CITYTRAIL Loppet’

Railroad track crossings, a rusted-out car abandoned in the woods, murals of graffiti under a bridge… these are not typical sights on a trail run. But the CITYTRAIL series of races, sponsored by Salomon, are not typical trail events.

GearJunkie partnered with Salomon last month to host a CITYTRAIL race on April 24. (See our recap here.)

This past weekend, on May 18, we were at the second event on the circuit, and the first major public venue for the project, the CITYTRAIL Loppet in Minneapolis.

Sprinting near the race start; photo: Paul Vincent

Hosted in the urban forests on the edge of downtown Minneapolis, the race included 10-mile or 10K options. Both courses took runners from an urban start line, into the woods, around lakes, over boardwalks, down twisting mountain biking trails, up stairs, and finally into downtown.

Racers emerged from the trails to cross a dramatic finish line at the city’s famous 11-acre sculpture garden. A party then ensued near the iconic Cherry On A Spoon sculpture, including Salomon and Suunto product demos, door prizes, an awards ceremony, and a beer garden.

Full Race Map on Page 2 of this post

Beyond Minneapolis, two other CITYTRAIL races will be held in 2014 in San Francisco and Chattanooga, respectively on September 27th and November 8th. Salomon and local city running clubs and retailers are also hosting training runs throughout the year.

Into the urban forest; photo: Paul Vincent

The races and events are connected to a product line launch and a CITYTRAIL app.

See our spread of photos below from the Minneapolis event. We had a blast on the course and think Salomon is onto something big with the CITYTRAIL concept, the rough paths, railroad crossings, graffiti, and all. —Stephen Regenold

Race start area; photo: Paul Vincent

Salomon shoes on pavement, ready for the trail; photo: Paul Vincent

Boardwalk with a view… skyline of MPLS in background; photo: Paul Vincent

Under the bridge, across the tracks…; photo: Paul Vincent

Detritus of the urban woods; photo: Paul Vincent

Trail options; photo: Paul Vincent

Trail art; photo: Paul Vincent

Obstacles on mtb trail; photo: Paul Vincent

Hundreds of stairs on the course; photo: Paul Vincent

Runners dwarfed by a freeway; photo: Paul Vincent

Finish line; photo: Paul Vincent

Cherry On A Spoon; photo: Paul Vincent

Finish area; photo: Paul Vincent

Demo gear; photo: Paul Vincent

Finisher’s photos; photo: Paul Vincent

Medals; photo: Paul Vincent

Swag; photo: Paul Vincent

Men’s and women’s top finishers; photo: Paul Vincent

Trophies for top winners; photo: Paul Vincent

Kids running group; photo: Paul Vincent

See you next year!

Stephen Regenold

Stephen Regenold is Founder of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of five, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.