Ultimate Staircase Races

Do you think you can handle either of these?


Running a marathon is a difficult challenge but climbing skyscrapers, towers and outdoor staircases while running tests your body like nothing else.

Most people do 10 minutes on a Stairmaster for leg-toning purposes and are out of breath. This is equivalent to going up about 50 flights of stairs, depending on your speed. Imagine running up real stairs, sometimes in a spiral shape, for 4,000 stairs or about 200 floors?

Tower-Running and Vertical-Running is an increasingly popular sport that started in New York in 1978, according to the Tower Running World Association. There are now more than 100 events all over the world.

The races on the following list are at least 2,200 steps. In comparison, the Empire State Run Up is 1,576.



Talking about ultimate races…The world’s longest staircase is located on the face of Mt. Niesen in Switzerland, nicknamed the “Swiss Pyramid” for its triangular shape, according to Oddity Central. The 2.1-mile staircase goes up the side of the mountain with 11,674 steps, ranging from an altitude of 3,000 feet at the bottom alone. The average gradient is a 55 percent, with a maximum of 65 percent. The race is on June 4, 2016.

Hochbunker Marathon

Facebook / Hochbunker Marathon

You will never forget this 7,449-staircase climbing race. You will be making 98 rounds in a World War bunker. The event will be held for a second time on July 17, 2016.

Stairways to Heaven


Climbing 4,261 stairs will seem like you’re headed to heaven. This year’s race is on July 23. There is an actual staircase embedded in the side of South Fortuna Mountain that runners must navigate to the top.

CF Climb Denver

Facebook / CF Climb Denver

You have to go up and down the stadium many times for a total of 3,865 steps. The race is on June 25, 2016 at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

Stadium Stomp MCG


Australians find interesting ways to make the most of their stadium. The MCG is one of the largest stadiums on the planet boasting a seating capacity of 100,024. The race, scheduled for June 26, requires climbing 3,670 staircases.

Stadium Stomp GABBA

Facebook / Stadium Stomp GABBA

The race is 2,500 (just going up) but there is a down rule – only one stair per step. The race is Australia’s ultimate stair climbing challenge where participants climb up, down and around the stairs within the GABBA stadium bays. The event is on July 24, 2016.

T2T Tower Climb, New York


Can you run up 2,226 stairs which is 104 floors? This year’s event is on May 15. The mission of the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, which started the race, is to honor the sacrifice of firefighter Stephen Siller, who laid down his life to save others on 9/11.

More readings: 

The World's 15 Best Half Marathons

The Best Endurance Events to Do in 2016

The World's 30 Best Marathons