The Course

The course is 5000m (5k) long. This has been accurately measured by us with a professional measuring wheel. The course is in Southern Boundaries Park, Durham, NC. The course is run entirely on paved, off-road paths. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

Durham NC parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the event as safe as possible, so participants, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • Take care on uneven surfaces – whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other participants, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us.
  • If you see someone with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of participants on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Lyme Disease is a bacterial infection spread to humans by infected ticks. Consider protecting yourself by wearing repellent when at parkrun events in grassy or wooded areas. See for further details.
  • You are welcome to take part with one dog by your side, within reach at all times, on a short, handheld, non-extendable lead. Please also see this Support Site entry for further details about parkrunning with dogs.
  • parkrunners pushing buggies are welcome, but please take care of others around you and do your best to start at an appropriate place in the field for your pace.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Durham NC parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help parkrunners compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

A mostly flat, two-loop 'lollipop' course, this run starts by the parking lot at southern boundaries park and follows the third fork creek trail beyond Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway before turning around at the end of the third boardwalk. The course is mostly paved except for three boardwalks. You'll want to watch out for puddles on the trail, particularly after rain, and the warning bollards found near the starting point and at the ends of boardwalks. Because the course goes through a flood zone, conditions may close part of the trail. When this happens, runners will do three shorter loops and the starting line moves to the bottom of the park, next to the basketball courts.


There is ample parking at southern boundaries park. Bathrooms maintained by the city are available during most of the year but are generally locked during the winter.

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts next to the parking lot and the softball field nearest third fork road.

Getting there by public transport

Take Durham Area Transit Authority (DATA) bus route 7 to Cornwallis Road at Beechwood Avenue; Southern Boundaries Park is 0.4 miles away. DATA route 5 to Fayetteville Street at Cornwallis Road is 0.7 miles from the park. Travelling from Research Triangle Park or Chapel Hill? Triangle Transit Authority (TTA) bus route 800 will be your best bet.
Visit for more details on public transportation to Durham NC parkrun.

Getting there on foot

Southern Boundaries Park is easily accessible by Third Fork Creek Trail, the bridge on Martin Luther King Jr Parkway that passes over the trail, or Archdale Drive, which is also off of Martin Luther King Jr Parkway. The trail goes from Southern Boundaries Park to South Roxboro Street and beyond that to West Woodcroft Parkway and Garrett Road.

Getting there by road

From Raleigh and points east of Durham via I-40: Take exit 276 and turn right off the exit ramp onto Fayetteville Rd. After approx. 3 miles, turn left on Martin Luther King Jr Parkway. Go 2 miles, turn right on Archale Dr, then look for signs on the right for the park.

From points west of Durham via I-40: Take exit 270 and turn left off of the exit ramp onto Durham-Chapel Hill Rd (US-15/US-501). After 2.1 miles, take exit 105B for Martin Luther King Jr Pkwy. Go almost 2 miles then turn left on Archdale Rd, which is the first left after the light at Hope Valley Rd. You’ll see signs on the right for the park.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in Foster’s Market in Durham, located at 2694 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd, Durham, NC - please come and join us!