Warrior Dash is the premier entry-level OCR. As one of the big 3 racing groups, alongside Spartan Race and Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash has identified their target market and the service they offer. When you sign up for Warrior Dash, you are signing up for a 3.1 to 3.5 miles distance trail race with up to 12 obstacles. All obstacles are designed to provide a basic challenge to someone who has just been ripped of the couch and will be entering their first OCR.
Warrior Dash has been conducted in August or September in Crawfordsville, IN for the last 4 years. Registration for 2015 is already open. Prices for Warrior Dash are very reasonable. Entry fees start at $40 the first week of registration and end at $90 on day of race. Parking is $10. For your entry fee, you are given the following free items: medal, t-shirt, fuzzy helmet, and a beer. You also get free pics and free bag check. Registration and bag check are very smooth. I’ve never saw an issue each year I’ve ran. Something that makes Warrior Dash really worth the value is unlimited laps. Warrior Dash is super flexible with heat times. You can pretty much run whichever heat you like and as many as you like. You receive a medal for each lap finished. For return on investment, I give a rating of a 5.
The spectator area. You will find your food and gear for sale, as well as a band playing. Much to our disappointment, Warrior Dash has a pretty firm policy that they do not allow team tents. Maybe they just haven’t figured out that the racing teams are the ones that bring in the most revenue. Without allowing any team tents in the spectator area, I give this a 2.
As far as obstacles, expect relatively safe but also easy obstacles. Warrior Dash posts on their website all obstacles that they may choose to use on each course. Warrior Dash has added a new, capstone obstacle, Goliath, which is good. It is a multi-level, several stage obstacle involving plank crossings, cargo net climbs, and a large slide into a pool of muddy water (be careful not to get this water up your nose or in your mouth). Again, Warrior Dash is designed as an entry-level OCR. For difficulty, I give the obstacles a 2.
The terrain of warrior dash is primarily conducted on trails in the woods. There are a good amount of hills, so the terrain isn’t all flat. With only 12 obstacles, sometimes Warrior Dash feels like a trail run with a few obstacles rather than a challenging OCR. For the entry-level OCR racer, the terrain will be more challenging than a standard street 5K or trail race 5K. I give the overall course a 3.
To summarize, Warrior Dash has defined their target market and they do a good job designing a course for that market. For all of us who do many OCRs each year, to include more challenging courses, such as Dirt Runner, Tough Mudder, or Spartan Race, Warrior Dash still can fit into our schedules. For new OCR racers, Warrior Dash is a great starting point. Given the price ranging from $40 to $90 not counting any discount codes, Warrior Dash is an excellent race to consider for the race calendar.