Don't Fence Me In Trail Run

Each May, Montana’s trail running season kicks off with Helena’s Don’t Fence Me In Trail Run. What started off as a small gathering aimed at generating support and excitement for local open space is now a major community event celebrating our local wild lands and our connection to them. And what better way to celebrate the outdoors than wandering the switchbacks and rough terrain with your fellow outdoor enthusiasts! Everyone is encouraged to run with us on the nationally renowned South Hills trail system, whether pushing through the 30K dash over two peaks, scrambling through hills and trees with the 5K or 12K races, or taking time to sniff the wild roses in the non-competitive 5K Dog Walk. The 19th Annual Don’t Fence Me In Trail Run is set for Saturday, May 11, 2019.

30K – $75    |    12K – $40    |    5K – $30    |    5K Dog Walk – $35

5K course

Trail Map

View the course map and profile!

12K course

Trail Map

View the course map and profile!

30K course

Trail Map

View the course map and profile!

Pre-Party and Packet Pick-Up

Avoid the Saturday morning registration lines by attending Friday’s pre-party and packet pick-up at Blackfoot River Brewing from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m on May 10th. Get a rare peek behind the scenes at Blackfoot’s production facility (north of the taproom) where there’ll be live music and food trucks to accompany the release of the legendary E-trail Pale Ale. Mingle with fellow racers and pick up your race t-shirt, race bib, and packet materials. Cheers to the start of trail season!

If you are unable to pick up your packet on Friday, there will be race day pick-up and late registration at the start/finish area from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

  • Early-birds registering before April 10 will receive official race t-shirts in their size. Those registering after April 10 will likely get their size, but there are no guarantees. T-shirts are unisex (and the same fun style as last year), so we recommend women size-down accordingly.
  • Late registration begins Thursday, May 9 and all races will have a $10 price increase. Thank you for helping PPLT plan ahead by registering early!

Race Day Timeline

Trail run activities begin and end at Pioneer Park (aka Anchor Park) located at the south end of the Downtown Helena Walking Mall, next to the Lewis & Clark Library. The official starting line of each race is at the intersection of S. Warren Street and Miller Street, and the finish line is in Pioneer Park near Reeders Alley. See Courses for descriptions and maps of the events.

  • 6:30 a.m. – 30K packet pick-up begins
  • 7:30 a.m. – 30K run begins
  • 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. – Packet pick-up and late registration for 12K, 5K, and 5K Dog Walk
  • 10 a.m. – 12K Run and Walk begins
  • 10:30 a.m. – 5K Run and Walk begins
  • 10:45 a.m. – 5K Dog Walk begins
  • An awards ceremony will take place around noon – all friends and family are welcome!

Awards Ceremony

Overall male and female winners in each distance will win a prize. First-place male and female finishers in each age group in each event will be awarded a prize. The 5K Dog Walk is noncompetitive. See the results page for past years’ race times. Please “go the extra mile” and solicit support from your family and friends through fundraising. We will launch our pledge page soon so you can learn how you can further support PPLT’s efforts.

Age Groups

  • 70 and over
  • 60-69
  • 50-59
  • 40-49
  • 30-39
  • 20-29
  • 15-19
  • and 14 and under.

USATF rules apply.

Follow us on Facebook at Prickly Pear Land Trust and Instagram @PricklyPearLandTrust  #DontFenceMeInTrailRun

Thank you to Jason O’Neil for the photographs from 2018!

2018 Sponsors

Mount Ascension Sponsor

Rodney Ridge Sponsors

Springhill Meadow Sponsors

Big Sky Cycling & Fitness
Bike Helena
Capital City Health Club
First Security Bank
Heuiser Physical Therapy
McDonald’s of Helena
Peak Physical Therapy
Performance Injury Care and Sports Medicine
State Fund
Valley Bank
Windermere Real Estate, Mary Ahmann Hibbard


Don’t Fence Me In Trail Run is the first race in the Treasure State Trail Series.

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