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Morgan Tilton

Why I run

I appreciate the simplicity of running, and that I can take runs with me as a traveler. I love the mental clarity and creative flow that runs provide, often percolating my best ideas or realizations, and the post-run calm. I wasn’t formally trained though running has long been symbiotic to my life. I first started running in high school as a tactic to land Varsity soccer and time on the field. In college, running—often on a treadmill at 9:30 p.m.—was how I balanced my mental health with a rigorous course load then eventually joined the casual club cross-country team to meet other runners. After graduating from the University of Denver, I was introduced to trail running in the foothills of Mile High City, which helped stave off my longing for the mountains where I’d grown up. Trail running continues to open an incredible door of experiences, exploration, community, friendships, and fun goals in addition to the wonderful health benefits.

My favorite trail to run

I’m most excited by high-altitude runs to explore far-reaching places in my backyard of Colorado’s Elk and San Juan Mountains, which is my favorite place to adventure on foot. Though, I’m constantly amazed that I never get tired of running the most accessible, simple trails out my front door day after day whether that’s Bear Creek Trail in Telluride or the Lower Loop in Crested Butte.

What I hope to convey with my writing

Storytelling is a way to capture the history, culture, and essence of place and community, and to share human experiences that awe-inspire, relate to, and guide others. Through human stories about runners, I hope people feel invited to run for the reasons that speak to them—whether that’s to hold space for mental health and self-care, connect with nature, explore new places, build new friendships, get an energy boost, improve fitness, compliment other athletic goals, or race. No reason is too small to be a runner.

More about Morgan

I’m a fourth-generation Coloradan and adventure journalist specializing in outdoor industry news and travel narratives. In less than a decade, I’ve been a recipient of more than a dozen North American Travel Journalists Association awards including an accolade for, “Connecting with Tarahumara through Trail Running,” an essay about running and connecting with the indigenous community of Copper Canyon, Mexico. I’ve worked as a journalist for nearly 20 outdoor and tourism trade events including live reporting at Outdoor Retailer and the former Snowsports Industries America Snow Show; filed features as the Teton Gravity Research Snowboard Editor; and penned stories as a two-time international media delegate for the Adventure Travel Trade Association in the countries of Canada and Jordan. Today, I’m a Staff Writer for Lola Digital Media, which hosts a dozen outdoor and adventure publications including GearJunkie; the WeRunFar columnist of iRunFar; the NewsBreak outdoor recreation reporter for the state of Colorado; and a regular contributor of Bicycling and Runner’s World. Read my published pieces and follow my adventures at @motilton and MorganTilton.com.

Recent posts by Morgan Tilton

Sprinting down and flying above the world’s biggest mountains

Trail runner, filmmaker, sky diver, and dirt biker Allie Mac goes full throttle as a creator and athlete.

Rock hopping with Run the Whites

Creative athlete and gear guru Andrew Drummond helps athletes come together and explore the White Mountains year-round.