FAQs


When is this year's event?

This year's Great Columbia Crossing 10K will be held on Sunday, October 15, 2017.

How many people participate in this event?

We cap our registration at 3,500 participants each year. About half of those participants choose to pay for personal chip timing and show up in the official race results.

How much is registration? What is included with registration? Where can I register?

Please click on our Registration Page for more information about cost, what is included with your registration and how to register.

Who does this event benefit?

The Great Columbia Crossing is a fundraiser for the Astoria-Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce, allowing us to continue hosting this event year after year. Additionally, we give back to our community in two ways: 1) By employing/hiring/utilizing Chamber members and local businesses for event logistics, supplies and services and 2) By giving donations to area nonprofits in exchange for services provided during the event. This really is a community-focused event.

Am I eligible? What ages can participate? Can my kid participate?

The Great Columbia Crossing 10K is a fun event for the entire family. It is an event enjoyed by both amateurs and skilled athletes. Children ages 8 to 17 must register as a participant. Children younger than 8 will also be allowed to participate, but do not need to pre-register or pay the registration fee. However, every minor must be accompanied by an adult at all times during the event. Children under age 8 will be issued a "kid bib" before getting on a shuttle bus on race day.

Why do you need my age/date of birth during registration?

All participants with chip timing are being timed individually, and we will announce the top three winners in each age and gender category at the end of the race and present their awards. If you are not at the ceremony, you will be responsible for picking up your award. Age groups and categories for men and women will include 15 categories: 19-under; 20-24; 25-29; 30-34; 35-39; 40- 44; 45-49; 50-54; 55-59; 60-64; 65-69; 70-74; 75-79; 80 & over. The number of awards is based on the number of participants in each category.

Do you offer a discount for groups, seniors or members of the military?

No, we do not. Unfortunately, due to our inherent cost-per-participant, we cannot offer discounts for groups, seniors or members of the military at this time.

Can I bring a stroller for my small child?

Yes, however, only collapsible strollers are allowed, due to space constraints on our shuttle. All participants with strollers must load the shuttle bus at the Port of Astoria at 7:00 a.m. on race day, as not all of our shuttle buses are equipped with adequate storage for strollers.

How does electronic chip timing work? What if I forgot to purchase chip timing?

We contract with Eclectic Edge Racing, out of Eugene, to provide electronic chip timing for participants who pay the $5 chip timing upgrade fee. The chip is attached to the back of your bib -- as soon as you cross the start line, your time starts! The chip records your finish time once you step across the finish line. We will have a line of volunteers at the finish line who will tear the chip off your bib. If you didn't purchase chip timing when you registered, but would like to add it to your registration, please email Event Coordinator Kelsey Balensifer or call (503) 325-6311.

How can I get an event shirt?

Please click on our Merchandise Page to learn more about event shirts and how to purchase them.

Where is my registration confirmation?

If you register online, you should receive a registration confirmation via email after you have successfully registered for the event. If you filled out a paper registration form, a courtesy registration confirmation is ONLY sent to those who provide an email address. Please allow for extra time to process a paper registration.

Can I get a refund if I can't attend the Great Columbia Crossing?

There are no refunds for any purchases associated with the Great Columbia Crossing 10k, including registration fees. Registration cannot be transferred to another person, and you cannot give your bib to another person.

How do I get my packet? Can I pick up my friend and/or family member's packet?

Please check out our Packet Pick Up Page for more information.

What is the event route?

Participants start at Dismal Nitch Rest Area in Washington. They head southwest on State Route 401 toward US-101 S/Oregon Coast Hwy (Northbound lane closed to vehicle traffic - 1 mi). Participants turn left onto US-101 S/Oregon Coast Hwy (Northbound lane closed to vehicle traffic - 4.2 mi), cross the Astoria-Megler Bridge and make a left onto US-101 S/W Marine Drive. They turn left and head through the parking lot near Basin Street and follow arrows west to the Riverwalk. Participants stay on the Riverwalk and then turn right onto Hamburg Street, right on Gateway and then go straight to the Finish Line at the foot of Basin Street!

What is the bridge incline like?

The uphill portion of the bridge is a little more than 3,250 feet, which is about .61 of a mile. The hill starts about 3.9 miles into the race. The bridge crest is about 4.5 miles into the race. The grade of the hill is 5.62%, or a little less than a 4° slope.

What is the weather in October?

The weather in October can be fickle. Some years, we've had the pleasure of running and walking under brilliant blue skies and sun. Other years, we've experienced downpours and heavy winds. Plan for the worst and hope for the best, but know that the race will still take place, rain or shine.

What is the schedule on event day?

We keep a very tight schedule on race day to ensure our event starts and finishes on time, per our agreement with the Oregon Department of Transportation. We ask that you familiarize yourself with our Schedule of Events Page and arrive on time. You risk missing the race if you arrive too late on race day.

Where can I park on race day? Where do I catch the shuttle? Can I get dropped off at the starting line?

Parking is available at the Port of Astoria and the Port of Chinook. From there, a shuttle with transport you to the starting line at the Dismal Nitch Rest Area. If you park in Astoria, follow traffic signs off Highway 30 to Hamburg Street and then flaggers will direct drivers to the correct parking lot. In Astoria, participants who arrive later will have to park farther away from the shuttle bus loading site. Please DO NOT attempt to drop off participants or watch participants begin the race at the starting line at Dismal Nitch Rest Area. All participants MUST take the shuttles from the Port of Astoria or the Port of Chinook. Space is limited, and we need to keep the road open for buses transporting 3,500 participants. For parking at the Port of Astoria, use the following address for GPS: 413 Gateway Avenue, Astoria, OR 97103. For parking at the Port of Chinook, use the following address for GPS: 743 Water Street, Chinook, WA 98614.

What if I need special accommodations on the shuttle?

If you or a loved one needs special accommodations on the shuttle due to a disability, wheelchair, etc., please call ahead to let us know. We want to ensure you have the best possible Great Columbia Crossing experience, but we need your help to do so.

Can I bring a bag?

No bags are allowed on the shuttle buses or the race course. This includes fanny packs, backpacks, running belt pouches, diaper bags, purses, camel backs, shopping sacks. NO BAGS are allowed. You can carry loose items in your pockets (keys, water bottles, etc.). This policy was created with local law enforcement and the Department of Homeland Security. This policy is in place for your safety.

Where is "Gear Check" dropoff and pickup?

The Astoria-Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce provides a “Gear Check” service! When you arrive at the starting line, you can find the “Gear Check” truck located just next to the shuttle bus drop off location. You can put your sweatshirts, jackets and anything else you don't want to carry during the race in a plastic sack labeled with your unique bib number. We will shuttle the sacks across the river, and they will be available for pick up next to the water tables near the finish line.

Are dogs allowed on the course?

No pets are allowed.

How long does the course stay open? What if I can't finish the race?

The Astoria-Megler Bridge is only open to participants from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. If you cannot cross the bridge within the two hour time limit, you will be picked up by a “sweeper bus." The finish line will stay in place until the last participant crosses the line, even those dropped off by the sweeper bus.

Will there be timers along the course?

There will be volunteers at each mile marker, but since everyone is starting at a different time, they cannot give accurate information regarding your time. Only participants who purchase the $5 chip timing upgrade are guaranteed of an accurate time because they are chip timed from when they cross the start line and finish line.

What happens if I’m hurt along the course?

We will have emergency medical technicians placed along the race route and at all of the mile marker locations on the bridge. There are also several law enforcement officers patrolling the route during the entire event who can respond to any emergency situation with lights and sirens. An ambulance is staged at the ODOT headquarters at the base of the Astoria-Megler Bridge.

What impacts are there to vehicles during the event? Is the bridge closed to traffic?

Your patience on race morning is greatly appreciated while traffic across the bridge is affected. There will be heavy traffic crossing the bridge as our shuttles to the starting area begin at 7:00 a.m. Starting at 8:30 a.m., vehicle traffic will be guided by a pilot car in alternating directions using one lane of the bridge. Due to the reduced speed on the bridge during this time, vehicles may wait around 45 minutes to cross. Traffic flow should be back to normal shortly after 11:00 a.m. Be prepared for this delay if you need to cross the bridge on Sunday morning – we suggest altering the time you make your trip to avoid the delays if possible. We appreciate the assistance and coordination from the many agencies that provide traffic control, security and safety for the event.

How many bathrooms will be at the event?

There are 12 portable restrooms where you load the shuttle buses at the Port of Astoria (which is also the finish line). You will find 35 portable restrooms at the starting line at Dismal Nitch. There is also one portable restroom at the top of the bridge, for mid-race emergencies.

Can I use my time to qualify for a marathon?

Yes, the Great Columbia Crossing 10k run is an OFFICIAL USA Track & Field Certified Event (#OR12025LB). You must purchase the $5 chip timing upgrade to receive an official time. Click Here for Mile Splits & Course Certification Map.

What are "Clam Bucks" and how can I spend them?

Click on our Clam Bucks Page for more information and the list of participating businesses.

How do I find the best spot to watch my friend/family in the event?

We will have bleachers set up at the finish line at the foot of Basin Street at the Port of Astoria. Parking is available off Hamburg Street – follow traffic signs and flaggers will direct you to the correct parking spot.

Are there showers or changing rooms after the event?

Showers are available at the Astoria Aquatic Center located at 1997 Marine Drive in Astoria. Check with the Astoria Aquatic Center for prices.

Where do I get a snack and water?

A light snack and drink is available at the end of the race, straight ahead after you cross the finish line. Water stations are set up at the starting line at Dismal Nitch & the finish line at the Port of Astoria. You will see a WATER banner above the water tables. Water is not provided along the race route because it occurs along a state highway that promptly re-opens to traffic following the race, leaving no time to clean up water station garbage.

Will there be an award ceremony?

A short awards ceremony will begin promptly at 11:00 a.m. near the finish line. We will announce the top three winners in each age and gender category and present their awards. If you are not at the ceremony, you will be responsible for picking up any award. Age groups and categories for men and women will include 15 categories: 19-under; 20-24; 25-29; 30-34; 35-39; 40- 44; 45-49; 50-54; 55-59; 60-64; 65-69; 70-74; 75-79; 80 & over. The number of awards is based on the number of participants in each category.

Is there a finisher medal?

No, we do not supply a finisher medal. We encourage race participants to purchase a t-shirt or event photo to commemorate the day.

Will a shuttle bus return me to the parking lot at the Port of Chinook after the race?

Yes. Shuttle buses returning to the Port of Chinook will leave the Port of Astoria (finish line) at 11:00 and 11:45 a.m.

Can I buy an event shirt afterwards?

Please check out our Merchandise Page for more information on event shirts.

When do I get my race results?

The initial results are posted on our Results Page within 24 hours. The final results will be corrected within 7 days. These results only show participants who signed up for the chip timing upgrade.

Where can I buy professional event photos?

We will have a professional event photographer taking photos on the course. We will provide a link to the official event photos once the event has finished.

Where should I stay if I'm coming from out of town?

You can find a list of area lodgings on our tourism website. The four closest hotels -- all within 5 minutes walking distance -- to the shuttle bus pick up at the Port of Astoria are Astoria Riverwalk Inn, Cannery Pier Hotel & SpaHoliday Inn Express Hotel & Suites and Motel 6.

What else can I do in town on event weekend?

Check out our tourism website for area information, or peruse our event calendar for ideas.

When should I mark my calendar for the upcoming Great Columbia Crossing 10K events?

The event is typically held the second Sunday in October, but never on the same weekend as the Portland Marathon. Mark your calendar for Sunday, October 14, 2018.

More questions?

Email Event Coordinator Kelsey Balensifer or call 503-325-6311.