Arctic Dash

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2023 Dash Information

The Arctic Dash was born out of a desire from the Camp Kern team to bring obstacle course racing and mud running to the area and to use Camp Kern for a fundraising event that was truly unique in its history. What better way to help send kids to camp and to show off our beautiful 485 than race through it!

The 6k (ish!) obstacle course race is great for all abilities and encompasses much of Camp Kern's property, with over 27 fun and challenging obstacles sprinkled throughout the course.  

We are now in our 11th year of the event and are proud that this event has raised more than $85,000 for our Annual Campaign, which provides scholarships to allow kids, whose families otherwise may not be able to afford it, to have that magical summer camp experience.


YMCA Camp Kern is a place for families, and last year we debuted the Family Wave to allow kids ages 7 and up to run the course with their parent or guardian. This will be the last wave of the day, and may not include any immersed water obstacles. The course may also be shortened a bit (but not too much) based on race-day conditions. The Family Wave is only for families: kids must be with a parent or guardian the entire route, and parents and guardians must be with their kid or kids the entire route. (It is OK to compete in a sprint for the finish line to see who wins!)

We also offer a big, heated building for pre- and post-race hanging out, spectator area, warm water hose-offs and showers, bag storage area, and a friendly group of staff and volunteers to help with any of your needs.

2023 DATE - SATURDAY, DEC. 2nd

Waves start at 10am and run every 15 minutes.

The Competitive Waves will start 10:00 and 10:15a.m. and be limited to 30 runners per wave and registration is first come first serve. Prizes will be awarded for the top 3 male and female overall and top three male and female Age Groups. Those vying for awards must complete the entire course and all obstacles according to the rules set forth at the start line. Most obstacles allow multiple attempts to compete. There will be some with penalty loops for a failed attempt. 

Open Waves start at 10:30 and continue every 15 minutes until 11:30.  Open Wave participants can choose which obstacles they attempt or complete.

The Family Waves will be after the Open Wave, at approximately 11:45.

Registration is now OPEN!! Walk-in registrations on race day will be accepted, with wave time and t-shirt/medal availability are not guaranteed.

To register for the 2023 Arctic Dash, click on the link below, or scan the QR Code below.




Competitive Wave:     $59 before November 1st

                                $75 November 1st and after

Open Waves:             $49 before November 1st

                                $65 November 1st and after

Family Wave:             $39 for Adults before November 1st

                                $49 for Adults November 1st and after

                                $15 for Children before November 1st

                                $20 for Children November 1st and after

You must be 16 or older on the date of the race to compete in the Competitive or Open Waves of this race, and anyone under the age of 18 must have their parent or legal guardian sign their waiver.

Children running the Family Wave must be at least 7 years old on the date of the race and be with their parent or adult the entire route.

What's included in registration fee:

  • 2023 Arctic Dash T-shirt (if registered before Nov. 15th)
  • Medal (if registered before Nov. 15th)
  • Parking
  • Post-race alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Post-race snacks and water
  • Warm water showers / rinse off area
  • Bag drop area
  • Prizes for Top 3 Male & Female Overall and Age Groups.

Day Of Race

All the race day details can be found here, but some highlights are below:

  • We recommend you show at least 45 minutes prior to your wave time, to allow time to park, check in, change clothes, study the course map, warm up and get to the start line.
  • There will be no switching of start times on race day.
  • There is no pre-race packet pick up, and we are not providing actual bags, marketing materials or giveaways as we try to be more eco-friendly.
  • A course map will be posted here and on social media a few days before the race (last year's map is below).

COVID Considerations

As we continue to fight the pandemic and try to keep everyone safe and healthy heading into the holiday season, we ask everyone to please follow these guidelines:

  • If you are sick in the days leading up to the event, please do not attend.
  • If you or someone you were in contact with tests positive for COVID, please do not attend.
  • If you are not fully vaccinated, please wear a mask when inside (during check-in etc.).
  • Try and maintain appropriate distance when indoors.
  • As always, be respectful of staff, runners and volunteers. 

Toys For Tots

Our event is also a proud partner of 'Toys for Tots' and we encourage all runners, sponsors, volunteers and spectators to bring a new, unwrapped toy to the event, to help local kids have a magical holiday.

The Course & Obstacles

The Arctic Dash Course has evolved over the years and is now an all encompassing mud / obstacle run over approximately 6K+...all of it on YMCA Camp Kern property and using all of our unique landscape and natural features. The race will contain 27+ obstacles, varying from the slightly challenging to almost crazy! There will be mud.  There will be water, cold water. There will be rugged terrain. There will be ravines. You will have to climb.  You will have to crawl.  You will be challenged.


Time slots for this race begin at 10am and run every 15 minutes. There will be no switching time slots on the day of the race. The race is approximately 6K long (or so) and takes anywhere from 40 minutes to 2+ hours to complete. Runners must complete all obstacles to be eligible for a prize, but all obstacles can be skipped. Every runner will receive a finisher's medal. 


This event doesn't run without the help of a team of Volunteers and we if you are looking for a way to give back to Camp, this is the perfect fit. Volunteers are usually needed from 8am - 2pm and are used to help with registration, directing runners, parking and handing out medals etc. To sign up, click below and for more information email Todd Brinkman at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Sign Up!


We are always looking for community sponsors to help support this event and have multiple sponsorship levels. For more information, click here and if you have any interest or questions, please email Todd Brinkman at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A big thank you to our current sponsors for their continued support of YMCA Camp Kern and our mission: 

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Race Day Pictures

We rely on our wonderful volunteers to take pictures throughout the race.