As an avid trail runner who pursues the best trail races across the U.S. and the globe, I am always scouring the events calendars of my favorite trail racing organizers and groups. As a native Texan, this has given me the ability to participate in many of the best trail races in Texas, as well as come to recognize the top trail racing organizations and groups in Texas who put on the best trail running events! You won’t go wrong running a race put on by any of the following top trail running groups in Texas!
Disclosure: Below are some affiliate links-these are all products I highly recommend. I won’t make any recommendations on this page that I haven’t tested or personally used!
Table of Contents
Top Trail Running Groups and Organizations in Texas
These are the top trail running groups and organizations in Texas, spread across the state, and specializing in different types of trail running events, and different regions of the state! Rest assured that if you sign up for one of their races, you are in for a guaranteed treat! Keep reading to find out more about each organization’s calendar of trail running events, and links to sign up for one of their trail races!
- Tejas Trails
- Ultra Expeditions
- Trail Racing Over Texas (TROT)
- Blaze Trails Running
- Texas Outlaw Running
- San Angelo Road Lizards
- The Active Joe
- Trail Roots Running Company
#1: Tejas Trails
The Tejas Trails speciality is hill country races in central Texas! If you are looking for trail running races that highlight the best of the this region, run all year round, Tejas Trails is the group to check out! Some of their most loved races include:
- The Bandera Endurance Trail Run ( a Western States 100 qualifier)
- The Rocky Raccoon 100
- The Tinajas Trail Race
- Pandora’s Box of Rox
- Spider Mountain Trail Race
- The Capt’n Karl’s Trail Series
- Cactus Rose Endurance Trail Run
- Wild Hare Trail Run
- Mosaic Trail Run
#2: Ultra Expeditions
What I love the most about Ultra Expedition’s trail running events are that they intentionally highlight all the different regions of Texas, with different races known as their Eco Series, occurring throughout the year, each in a unique and different ecosystem. This includes trail races in canyons, deserts, forests, beaches, mountains, hills, and prairies!
- The Wildcatter in North Texas (Hill Country)
- The Border to Badlands in South Texas (Desert)
- Hidden Hills Ultra in North Texas (Hill Country)
- Southwest 100 in Southwest Texas (Mountains)
- The Wild Canyon Ultra in West Texas (Canyons)
- The Piney Woods Ultra in East Texas (Forests)
- The Oktoberfest Trail Run in North Texas (Prairies)
- The Barrier Island Ultra in South Texas (Coasts)
This is just the highlights of the Texas Eco Series put on by Ultra Expeditions, but it is not an exhaustive list of all their trail races. You can check them all out on their website below.
Which are my favorites? It’s hard to narrow it down, but the Wild Canyon Ultra is held in one of my favorite state parks in the entire state, Caprock Canyon State Park! For a region not necessarily known for big climbs, the Wildcatter Ultra in north Texas is a surprising one, with welcoming shady sections as well as some big uphills! The Border to Badlands is a unique way to check out the canyons shaped by the mighty Rio Grande River in Seminole Canyon State Park, as an alternative to the more well known Big Bend National Park. The Southwest 100 is held in one of my favorite small towns in west Texas, Fort Davis! The trail run itself takes advantage of one of the best mountain ranges in Texas, but the other bonus is there are plenty of fun things to do in the area before and after the race!
#3: Trail Racing Over Texas
Trail Racing Over Texas has one of the most infectious, high energy, and high morale vibes in the Texas trail running world. They put on some epicly well organized, rugged, challenging, and unique races across the state of Texas, in some of the best state parks! There’s a wide range of offerings, from flat and fast, to uphill and trudging! A few of their highlights include:
- The San Felipe Shootout
- The Brazos Bend 50
- The Wildflower Trail Runs
- The Habanero Hundred
- The Night Moves Trail Race
- Mission Tejas Trail Run
Which TROT trail running events are my favorites? The Franklin Mountains Trail Run is an unbeatable way to experience true mountains in Texas! It was my first TROT race years ago, and remains one of my all time favorite trail races and trail racing destinations! El Paso and the Franklin Mountains are truly an under-rated trail running destination in the state.
#4: Blaze Trails Running
Blaze Trails Running is a great trail running group that is highly supportive, friendly, and puts on great local trail running events for north Texas. They take advantage of the best local state parks and local trails, turning even ones that may be under the radar when you consider the state of Texas as a whole, and morphing them into some exciting trail running races. My favorite trail runs are the Possum’s Revenge and Coyote Trail Run, both held in two of the best state parks in north Texas. Plus there are other great annual events like:
- The Dana Peak Trail Run
- The Rockledge Rumble
- Running the Rose
- The Paris Pair
- The Blazin Summer Sufferfest
#5: Texas Outlaw Running
Another trail running group in Texas that likes to highlight the diverse and varying ecosystems and environments in Texas, by hosting trail running events in them all! Texas Outlaw Running puts on a 4 part “Texas Ultra Series”: a North Texas Ultra, South Texas Ultra, East Texas Ultra, and West Texas Ultra. The destinations are as follows:
- North Texas Ultra – Fort Richardson State Park
- South Texas Ultra – H.W. Lewis Ranch in Hill Country
- East Texas Ultra – Lake Bob Sandlin State Park
- West Texas Ultra – Lake Meredith National Recreation Area
Throughout the year there are other favorites, like the Chupacabra 50, the Frio Trail Runs, and the Ramble in the Brambles.
#6: San Angelo Road Lizards
While they are based in the inconspicuous, humble, west Texas town of San Angelo, this group still puts on some of the best local trail runs for their region. They do a fantastic job of highlighting San Angelo State Park, a park known for its trails full of endless desert horizons, “cacti” forests, prehistoric dinosaur tracks, and trails that are mostly flat and fast! If you are local to the area, you can join in on one of their many weekly runs too.
My favorite event of the San Angelo Road Lizards is the Crazy Desert Trail Race held in San Angelo State Park in early March. The weather is perfect for running, the morale is high, and the desert is alive this time of year! You can run the same course through San Angelo State Park in November on the Dinosaur Trail Run, if fall is your preferred time of year to trail run!
#7: The Active Joe
The Active Joe is another trail running group local to North Texas, and it puts on some of the best (and longest running) trail running events in the area. Perhaps their best known event is the Cross Timbers Trail Run at Lake Texoma. The year 2024 will mark the 43rd annual running of this trail race! There are several other great trail running events offered throughout the year, including the Dinosaur Valley Endurance Run at Dinosaur Valley State Park, all local to North Texas.
#8: Trail Roots Running Company
Trail Roots may be a lesser known name among the top trail running groups and organizations in Texas, but they have been around for some time, putting together great races for their runners. Trail Roots is based out of Austin, but they support trail races both in and outside of Austin. Take for example, one of their best events, 20 years running, the Big Bend Ultra in Big Bend Ranch State Park, which makes the list for one of the best trail races in Texas! Another local favorite close to home is the Salmagundi Trail race, located on the beautiful Pedernales River in Texas Hill Country.
And there you have it, the best trail running groups and organizations in Texas! Want to learn more about trail running and trail races?
- Intro to Trail Running
- Trail Running Gear Checklist
- Trail Running vs Road Running
- Long Distance Trail Running Training Plan for Beginners
- Best Half Marathons in Texas
- Best Trail Races in Texas
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