Birch Bay Marathon Results Archives

To the left are links to all the results of the Birch Bay Marathon & 25k!!

Birch Bay Marathon History

In 1968 Jim Freeman, Jim Pearson, and Evan Smith met to form the Snohomish Track Club, an organization which Smith felt should host as Pacific Northwest AAU championships all distances sponsored by the AAU at the national level. Each of the three would personally host one event. Pearson picked the marathon. A Birch Bay resident at the time, he had been lost during the hard-to-follow Victoria marathon, and his friend John Bodoia had been hit by a bus during the Vancouver marathon. With these two things in mind, Pearson decided that a run from the Birch Bay State Park to Bay Center, twice around the Birch Point loop, and then back to the park would be the safest to run and the easiest to follow without getting lost. Since the bath house in the park did not open until April 1, the first weekend in April became race day. With that, the Birch Bay marathon was born.

Pearson continued to direct the race through 1991 except for two years during the ‘80s when Dick Henrie and the Greater Bellingham Running Club took over. When a Seattle marathon moved to a spot in April, Pearson moved the race to December, and the race of nearly 200 runners dropped to subsistence level. In 1992 Vancouver, BC’s Karl Jensen took over the race for several years, followed by Dave Dutton of Mount Vernon who put on the race for several years.. The race returned to GBRC command in 2005 with Western Washington University Math Chairman Tjalling Ypma at the helm. He moved the race to February, and the numbers started to increase. Jim’s son Joel Pearson joined Ypma as co-director in 2006 and now directs the race with Jim and the family!

Originally measured twice with a wheel, the course was officially AAU certified before the 1971 race with 290 total yards added to the original course. Though the course has remained basically the same, a road change near Semiahmoo made re-certification necessary before the 2007 race. History of the individual races can be found at Past Results.