This is part of a series of posts from my quest to run a half marathon in all 50 states.

I ran the Laughlin Half Marathon in  March 2008.  I had thought about running another half marathon in Nevada- the Six Tunnels to Hoover Dam Half Marathon, but wasn't sure about running through all of the tunnels.  I thought it could go either way- either it would be terrible because the runners get bottle-necked around the tunnels or it would be novel and fun.  Ultimately I chose the Laughlin Half Marathon, and I have to say this race was one that was pure torture from start to finish.  They really should have started it much sooner than 8 am because the sun was out in full force beating on us runners and by the end, I was simply exhausted from the heat.  The description of the race includes comments such as "Enjoy the river as you run along the Colorado River... enjoy panoramic views of the Arizona and Nevada mountains," but honestly I didn't think the view was that nice when I was running. But then again, all I could think about was the stifling heat and the wind beating down on us on the way back.  The course was also on what they called packed dirt with a gravel overlay but I really had problems getting my footing on the gravel.  In some places the gravel was so thick and uneven I had to slow down so I wouldn't fall or twist an ankle.  I see they now have a 7 am start time, which is a good move.  An hour earlier would have made a big difference.

Laughlin is only about an hour and a half drive from Las Vegas, which makes it easy to get to and from.  You can also make it a "race cation" like I did and spend some time in Vegas after the race.  You could even spend some time at the Grand Canyon, which is about a 3 hour drive from Laughlin.

From my post-race notes: "8 am start meant very hot conditions for most of course.  Ran out and back on dirt course, with loose gravel in places, which made proper footing difficult.  Very windy and hot on way back.  Not fun at all.  Was just glad to finish this one. Volunteers and crowds sparse. Finish time was 2:07:06.8."

http://www.laughlinhalfmarathon.com

Find this and other posts from half marathons plus other travel destinations at my blog:  runningtotravel.wordpress.com