Entry fee coming soon.  Registration begins March 14, 2018.  Beginning that morning, links will be located here to register, confirm or resend your registration.

39th Dam to Dam Shirt & Personalized Race Bib

Sign up in the first 39 days to guarantee your shirt size and a race bib personalized with your first name. After April 21st, shirt size not guaranteed.

Registration Cutoff

No registration after Tuesday, May 29th, or after the race limit of 8,000 entrants.

Age Requirements

Race entrants must be at least 12 years old. 12 & 13 year old entrants must run with a parent.

Refunds & Transfers

No refunds of entry fees, no transferring of race numbers. Runners not wearing the correct race number will be disqualified.

Packet Pickup

Race packets will be available 2:00pm to 8:00pm on Friday, June 1st at the Veteran’s Memorial Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center. No packets will be mailed or available on race day. Race entrants can find their race number on this site beginning at noon on Thursday, May 31st.

Refreshments and entertainment will greet you at packet pickup.  Ten $100 Fitness Sports door prizes to be given out at packet pickup, two every hour on the hour.

Where to Park

Check out the downtown parking map for parking ramp options on race day.

Buses – The ONLY Way to Get to the Dam

Bus service from 3 sites in 2018, no buses at Valley West Mall. Buses will depart from the 3 sites below to the start at Saylorville Dam. Downtown departure times from 5:00am to 5:45am. Merle Hay Mall and DMACC Ankeny Campus departure times from 5:00am to 6:00am. Transportation is only available prior to the race. There are no return buses to DMACC or Merle Hay Mall after the race. Bus transportation is included in the entry fee and you must designate your departure location preference during registration to allow for proper disbursement of buses to each location.

Buses will leave from:

– Downtown – Location TBA.

– Merle Hay Mall – Park on north side of mall, in the lot area north of the parking ramp.

– DMACC Ankeny campus – Park in Lot L-5 only, enter off of Oralabor Road.

No cars may be left at Saylorville Dam area.

Start Area

The start area is a very narrow, 2 lane road on Saylorville Dam with guard rails. At the start, you will be required to line up according to your pace. Please be fair. Faster runners, less than 7 minutes per mile pace or potential age division winners, line up in the front of the start area. Runners with a pace over 10 minute per mile line up at the back of the start area.

There are over 140 portable bathrooms, water and clothing drop west of the start area. Clothing bags are not allowed on Saylorville Dam. It is advised you bring your own water to the start.

Chip Timing – Awards Determined by Gun Time

All runners will be provided a bib chip. Your race number will have a chip affixed to the back. You will be timed according to your chip or net time. Open and age division awards will be determined by gun time.

The bib chip cannot be folded, pinned or bent in anyway for it to record your time correctly – failure to wear the race number correctly will result in disqualification.

Start – No Early Starts

The race starts at 7:00am on Saylorville Dam, north of Des Moines. The Dam and roads leading to the Dam are closed to traffic at 5:30am. To avoid congestion and parking difficulties, runners must take the bus to the Dam.

All entrants must start with the gun at 7:00am. Failure to do so will result in disqualification.


Please take note that Dam to Dam can no longer be responsible for personal items you bring to the race. Therefore, we will not provide the bag drop service from the start line to the finish line as has been done in the past. Please do not bring any personal belongings to the race which need to be transported to the finish line. Any belongings left at the starting line or along the race route will be donated to charity.

Route – Course open until 11:00am

The race is a point-to-point USA Track & Field certified distance. The start is on Saylorville Dam, where runners can see downtown Des Moines on the horizon. The 12.4 mile (20K) journey takes runners through Iowa’s countryside and Des Moines neighborhoods to the finish at Cowles Commons, 3rd & Locust. All miles are marked. Water stations are provided at least every 2 miles with medical support at the last water stations. The course is traffic-controlled and is timed until 11:00am.

Early starts, bikes, baby joggers, dogs and roller blades ARE NOT permitted. Headphones or electronic listening devices are permitted but discouraged for your safety and the safety of other runners.

Course Map

2018 Water Stations

1 Principal Financial Group (2.0 miles)

2 Nationwide Insurance (3.5 miles) *

3 Briggs Corp. (4.5 miles) *

4 Katie’s Crusaders (6.0 miles)

5 Oak Park Neighbors (7.5 miles) *

6 Polk County Employees (8.5 miles)

7 UnityPoint Health (10.0 miles) *

8 Nationwide Insurance (11.0 miles)

9 NCMIC (11.75 miles – also on 5K route)

10 Team RWB/Sogeti USA (Finish line)

(*) Powerade locations

Finish Area

The race finishes at Cowles Commons, 3rd & Locust, in downtown Des Moines.

A special Dam to Dam medal will be presented to each finisher, until 11:00am, immediately after crossing the finish line area.

Water and refreshments will be available near the finish line. Finishers must show their race number and be prepared to show a photo ID for alcoholic beverages.

Portable bathrooms are available.

Results will posted on the west side of Cowles Commons area.

Awards Ceremony & Results

Awards will be presented at 9:45am near the finish area. Top male and female winners will be announced to the crowd and receive a trophy. Top 10 money winners are eligible for age group awards. Age division awards will be available at the awards/information tent, near the library, beginning at 9:45am.

Results will be posted near the finish line.  Full results will be available by 5:00pm, Saturday, June 2nd, at www.damtodam.com.

Cash Prizes


1st – $2,000, 2nd – $1,000, 3rd – $800, 4th – $700, 5th – $600, 6th – $500, 7th – $400, 8th – $300, 9th – $250, 10th – $200. Master Runners 1st – $300, 2nd – $150. Prize money for US citizens only or Iowa runners.

Time Bonus

$2500 maximum is reserved for outstanding performances and/or potentially open runners in 11th-13th not receiving cash awards.  Race officials will make the determination post-race on any additional awards.

Age Division Awards

Runners receiving cash awards are eligible for Brooks – Dam to Dam long sleeve technical shirts.

Invited and Competitive Runners Info

Age Group Awards – Determined by Gun Time

Age group awards are as follows for both Male and Female: 16 & under (top 1), 17 to 19 (top 3), 20 to 24 (top 6), 25 to 29 (top 6), 30 to 34 (top 6), 35 to 39 (top 6), 40 to 44 (top 6), 45 to 49 (top 4), 50 to 54 (top 4), 55 to 59 (top 2), 60 to 64 (top 1), 65 to 69 (top 1) and 70 & over (top 1). Wheelchair awards are top 1 for both Male and Female. Up to 10 additional awards will be presented to top age division winners at the discretion of race officials.


Photos from Jolesch Enterprises will be e-mailed to you after the race.