The 2021 event will be held November 13. Check back for details.

Autumn Trail Chase 5K


Date & Time

Saturday, November 7, 2020

8:00 a.m.


Enjoy beautiful fall colors on the trails of The Forge - Lemont Quarries with this fun 15K & 5K


The Forge Lemont  Quarries

1001 S. Main St.

Lemont, IL


  • Chip-Timed 5K Run/Walk

  • Beautiful trail course through The Forge - Lemont Quarries

  • Unique Long Sleeve Performance Shirt

  • Autumn Trail Chase 5K Collector's Trail Badge Sticker

  • Overall and Age-Group Awards


Event Details

Event Day Schedule

  • 6:30 a.m. - Venue open

  • 7:50 a.m. - Deadline to report to Start Wave

  • 7:50 a.m. - Pre-Race Announcements / Instructions

  • 8:00 a.m. - Start​


Registration Fees [Registration is closed / We have reached capacity]

  • Late - $44 - Through November 5 (Closes at 6:00 p.m.)

  • Regular - $39 - Through November 1 

  • Early  - $34 - Through September 30

  • No Event Day Registration

  • CARA Supporter Level members save 10%!


  • Description: The course is generally flat. The trail surface is primarily well-maintained limestone chat, with some wooden surface bridge crossings, some gravel, and wood chip. The route begins within "The Lawn", which is The Forge's outdoor music venue. The course proceeds along the Illinois & Michigan Trail Passage, through the Lemont Heritage Quarry Trails, and through The Forge Adventure Park grounds. The surroundings are mostly wooded, with scenic views of the adjacent water-filled quarries and the adventure park.

  • Map: The course map can be found HERE.


  • Recognition awards provided to the top three males and females overall.

  • Recognition awards provided to the top three males and females in age-groups (14 & Under, 15-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, 80 & Over), overall award winners will not be included in age-groups.

  • Recognition awards will be mailed within two weeks of the event. Presentation ceremonies will not be held to limit gathering.

  • Due to event start procedures, chip finishing times will be used for all awards to ensure final results are determined by participant's finish times from the point they cross the start line, to the point they cross the finish line, regardless of start/finish order.

Packet Pick-Up ​

Travel / Parking

  • Location: The Forge, Lemont IL (1001 Main St., Lemont)

  • Travel information may be found in the Participant Guide.

Event Capacity / Finish Cut-Off

  • Participation will be limited to 300 persons.

  • Participants must finish within one (1) hour and five (5) minutes after the last on-time start (no late starts).

Start Wave Assignments / Procedures

  • Procedures have been designed to fully meet Restore Illinois gathering and safety guidelines for athletic events. Participants will be assigned to a Start Wave with a capacity of 50 persons. Within each Start Wave, two (2) participants will start the race every five (5) seconds to limit congestion and the need for passing on course. Detailed procedures are as follows: 

    • At packet pick-up, participants will receive a bib number with a Start Wave assignment (A, B, C, D, E or F) and a Start Position (1-50) within their wave. Each Start Wave will be limited to 50 persons.

    • Assignments will be determined by an estimated finish time participants provide during registration. Participants wishing to be in a wave with specific friends or family must register with identical estimated finish times. That estimated finish time should match the slowest person within the friend/family group. Participants who do not provide an estimated finish time will be placed in the final Start Wave. Changes to start waves/positions will not be permitted.

    • On event day, participants will organize before the race with their Start Wave in an assigned pod within the lawn of The Forge's large outdoor music venue. Pods will be separated by 30 feet from one another, and each will provide adequate space for participants to socially distance while within their pod. Non-registered participants may not enter pods, including parents/guardians (parents/guardians please consider this when registering your child if you do not plan to register/participate with them).

    • Participants may leave their pod to go to restrooms, or to complete warm-ups on designated trails. Participants must be within their pod, ready to start by 7:50 a.m.

    • Start Waves will be brought to the start line one at a time. Numbered cones will indicate start positions. Cones are placed to allow participants to remain six (6) feet apart while waiting to start. Participants should report to their start position when their wave is brought to the start area.

    • Beginning at 8:00 a.m., two (2) participants will start every five (5) seconds. As each two (2) begin, the remaining participants will move forward to the next open position. As participants arrive at positions one (1) and two (2) they will hold until signaled to start by race officials.

    • Once all participants from a Start Wave have begun the race, the next Start Wave will immediately be brought to the start area where the starting procedures will be repeated. This process will repeat until all Start Waves are on-course.

    • It is expected that each Start Wave will take approximately 2 minutes to clear the start line, and a gap of 30-60 seconds is expected between each Start Wave. The final start wave is expected to begin by 8:15 a.m. No late starts will be permitted. The finish cut off time will begin once the final wave has begun.

    • As participants finish, they must return to their Start Wave's pod or they may exit the event area.

  • The event reserves the right to adjust these procedures based on participation levels and or for changes in gathering guidelines or procedures.

  • Additional participant safety expectations are outlined in the sections below.

  • Start Waves will begin to be assigned prior to packet pick-up. Register early to ensure best assignment.

FAQ / Policies

What is the program's weather policy?

The event will go on rain or shine. However, if there is lightning or other hazardous weather we will cancel or postpone. Our full weather policy and weather alerts are HERE.

Can I cancel my registration?

No. Should participants voluntarily choose not to participate, or are unable to participate for reasons out of the control of the event (including, but not limited to injury, illness, personal matters, work conflicts, etc.), refunds will be issued.

Is there a CARA member discount?

Yes, a member discount is applicable to CARA Supporter Level members (Individual, Family or Student packages). Registrations by non-members includes a CARA Friend Level membership. Learn more about member benefits HERE.

Can I partipate with strollers or pets?

No. Participants are not allowed to participate with baby joggers, strollers or animals.

Can a friend pick up my packet?

Yes. Packets may be picked up by a friend or family member at pre-event day pick-ups. However, on event day, packets may only be picked up by the registered participant.

Can I give or sell my registration to another person?

No. You may NOT give (sell or transfer) your registration to another person and another person may NOT participate in another person’s place.

I am not able to race. Can I still get my shirt?

Yes. Howeever, you must come to a packet pick-up. Shirts are not available at the CARA office pre- or post-race.

Can I exchange my shirt for another size?

No. Due to COVID-19 contact safety, shirt exchanges are not permitted.

Can my group/club set up a tent?

No. Due to COVID-19 safety guidelines, club/group tents or areas are not permitted within the event venue.

What are the events competition rules?

The event will abide by USATF competition rules. Additionally, the event expects all participants to respect fair competition, including following the RRCA's Fair Competition Policies:

Is their an age minimum to participate?

No. All ages are welcome. However, parents/guardians are responsible for supervision of minors. Parents/guardians planning to run/walk the race with their child must register for the event.

What is the events refund, deferral, or cancellation policy?

This event is approved by the venue to occur as a live in-person event. Our participant guarantee is as follows: If this event is canceled due to COVID-19, participants will have the option to receive a refund, deferred entry, or to participate virtually (participants choice). In all other circumstances, participants must agree that refunds and deferrals will NOT be issued for any reason, including participant injury, illness, and any other issues out of the control of the event, including, but not limited to cancellation due to weather/lightning.

What is the cut-off time to finish?

Participants must finish within one (1) hour and five (5) minutes after the last on-time start (no late starts).

Are their group discounts available?

Yes. Groups of 10 or more are eligible for a group discount. An official representative of the group shou'd email for requests.

COVID-19 Safety

Participant Guidelines / Expectations​

  • Do not participate if you are feeling sick or ill, and or have a fever, or if you have been in contact with someone unrecovered from COVID-19. 

  • Persons from high-risk groups for COVID-19 complications should consult their physician before participating.

  • Do not engage in traditional forms of physical contact (handshakes, high-fives, hugs, partner stretching, etc.).

  • Do not engage in close group pictures/selfies.

  • Only spit or blow nose into a tissue or handkerchief.

  • Do not share personal items, such as hydration, energy gels, towels, etc.

  • Participants traveling from out of state must comply with any State of Illinois and Cook County travel orders.

  • Participants may be required to exit the event should their actions not meet expectations and or they are creating risk for themselves or others.​


Venue Entry Requirements

  • Participants must have a mask or face cover to enter the event area.

  • Participant's temperatures may be checked (below 100.4 degrees required to enter) by contactless thermometer upon entry. Temperature data will not be recorded.


Mask  / Facecovers

  • Participants must wear a mask or face cover at any time they are witin the venue (including, but not limited to parking, Start Wave  pods, restrooms, etc.).

  • Masks and face covers may be removed after the start while on-course. Volunteers and staff will wear a mask or face cover at all times.


  • Hand sanitizer will be available.

  • Indoor restroom buildings, with hand-washing, capabilities are available. 



  • Participants must bring their own hydration bottle.

  • Coolers, equipped with low-contact "UltraSpouts" for bottle refill. Cups will be available from self-service dispensers.

  • Bottled water will be provided at the finish post-race.


Gathering Procedures

  • The event will have a total capacity of 300, and per Restore Illinois Guidelines, participants will be separated into groups of 50, each separated by 30 feet. Detailed procedures are provided in the Start Wave explanation.

  • The event reserves the right to adjust these procedures based on participation levels and or for changes in gathering guidelines or procedures.

Spectators / Non-Participants

  • Non-registered persons, friends, and family may not enter the start/finish area or Start Wave pods. Non-registered persons are encouraged not the attend.

The Autumn Trail Chase part of an exciting series of trail races for the Chicagoland running community. Brought to you by the Chicago Area Runners Association, the CARA Trail Series will feature Spring, Summer, and Fall trail races in 2021 at The Forge Lemont Quarries.



Trail Chase 10K 

Lemont - The Forge

May 22, 2021



Trail Chase 5K 

Lemont - The Forge

August 14, 2021



Trail Chase 10K 

Lemont - The Forge

November 13, 2021

The Chicago Area Runners Association, CARA, is a non-profit organization committed to serving and advocating for the local running community. We are Chicagoland’s running club, providing accessible opportunities for all runners to train, race, learn, be social and volunteer. 

CARA, with over 10,000 members, is the nation’s third-largest running club, serving as the voice of local runners, as well as providing over 1,300 dates of programming and events per year.


Proud member of the Road Runners Club of America.

© 2020 Chicago Area Runners Association. Registered 501(c)(3). EIN: 36-3054942​