About Us


Trail Runner, the authority on off-road running since 1999, is the only magazine dedicated to the trail-running community, and our mission is to encourage runners of all ages and abilities to experience the outdoors and achieve a healthier lifestyle. Trail Runner seeks to advance the sport by actively encouraging diversity and expanding accessibility as well as advocating for issues relevant to public land use and the environment.

Trail Runner produces six high-quality issues per year, including our annual issue of DIRT, a long-form journal, with engaging stories and photos in the world of trail running. Written by trail runners (our staff has logged races and runs from 5K to 200-plus miles) for trail runners, we are the voice of the sport, and beginners and veterans alike depend on our well-researched articles. Trail Runner magazine inspires and informs with accurate, intelligent and innovative writing and compelling photography.

We produce an annual race directory, published each December, that features over 1,500 trail races (including a host of international events) and is also posted on our online Race Calendar, where listings are continuously updated throughout the year.

Trail Runner‘s free multimedia newsletters, distributed weekly via email to 140,000+ readers, highlights trail news, tips and trail-running culture in between regular issues of the print magazine. Sign up here the get the newsletters.

Big Stone Publishing also produces  Rock and Ice and Gym Climber the only climbing magazines that are climber owned and operated. With a cumulative 120 years of staff experience, we at Big Stone remain committed to publishing the highest quality and most authentic magazines. In 2005, the Western Publishers Association voted Rock and Ice the “Best Consumer Outdoor Recreation” magazine. Today, with both print and online versions of each magazine, our ability to inform and inspire trail runners and climbers worldwide is unsurpassed.

Trail Runner Staff

BEN YARDLEY, Publisher, began climbing in a small gym in Burlington, Vermont some 10 years ago. Soon after graduating from the University of Vermont he braved the world of real rock and set off to get scared and humbled. Finding no bugs or humidity in Colorado, Ben decided he’d found nirvana. Starting off in the Circulation Department at Big Stone Publishing, he quickly became the Ad Sales Manager. Later he worked at Backbone Media as a Media Planner, before recently jumping ship back to Big Stone. You can find him trail running or pulling on draws in Rifle and rattling off excuses.

MICHAEL BENGE, Editor of Trail Runner and DIRT magazines, grew up in the Heartland and attended the University of Kansas for degrees in Accounting and Business Administration. After a successful three-month accounting career, he escaped the flats of Kansas to become a Colorado ski bum (he claims he still is) and never left. Initially, he took up trail running as a way to train for skiing and climbing, and has been passionately running trails ever since. After moving to Aspen, he served as an editor at Climbing magazine for many years, before becoming the Editor of Trail Runner in 2002. His favorite place to run is in Colorado’s Elk Mountains, which surround Carbondale, Colorado, home to the Trail Runner world headquarters. His favorite long-run trail snack is a ham-and-cheese sandwich.

ZOË ROM, Associate Editor, found trail running in the Ozark Mountains in college. After graduating from the University of Arkansas, she headed for bigger hills on Colorado’s Front Range. She fell in love with the mountains through trail running, climbing and mountaineering while pursuing a master’s degree in environmental journalism at The University of Colorado in Boulder. After working as a sled-dog reporter in rural Alaska collecting sound a Aspen Public Radio as a producer and reporter, Zoë moved to Carbondale to work at Trail Runner in 2019. She writes, produces and hosts the DNF Podcast. She won a Colorado Broadcaster’s award for her feature reporting on the history of Colorado rodeos, and her reporting on avalanches has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered. Her runs are fueled by podcasts and vegan pizza.

ALISON OSIUS, Senior Editor, has been climbing for 40 years and in the past taught climbing in North Wales, California, Washington State and New Hampshire. She competed at national and international climbing events from World Cups to the X Games. She is author of the biography Second Ascent: the Story of Hugh Herr; a former newspaper columnist and a writer published in 50 magazines, newspapers and anthologies; past president (first woman pres.) of the American Alpine Club; and winner of the 2007 AAC Literary Award. She has a Master’s Degree from the Columbia University.

DAVID ROCHE, Contributing Editor, is a coach for runners of all abilities through his coaching service, Some Work, All Play. He is the 2014 USATF Trail Runner of the Year at the sub-ultra distance, and a two-time national champion and three-time member of Team USA. He graduated from Columbia University with a degree in Environmental Science and received a master’s degree and law degree from Duke University. His book, The Happy Runner, is about moving toward unconditional self-acceptance in a running life. Each week, he writes training tips that cover topics such as workout plans, nutrition advice and the value of rest. 

RANDALL LEVENSALER, Art Director, has built a reputation as a leader in magazine design and photo editing. Randall spent many years developing his creative eye working as a photo assistant and photographer in California. He has worked with numerous outdoor companies, including Marmot, La Sportiva, The Access Fund, American Alpine Club, Sierra Designs, Kelty, Climbing and Urban Climber magazines. Randy balances his visual pursuits with his passion for the outdoors. Whether it’s running, climbing, biking, or skiing, he relishes being self-propelled in the mountains

DUANE RALEIGH, President of Big Stone Publishing, has climbed for 45 years and worked in publishing for 25. He is author of hundreds of routes from Yosemite to the Fisher Towers to southern Texas, and has climbed worldwide. He is a former member of Yosemite Search and Rescue, the author of four books including the National Outdoor Book Award-winning Knots and Slings for Climbers, a former columnist for Sports Afield, and winner of the 2013 American Alpine Club Literary Award. Most recently, with John Long, he edited Yosemite, The Iron Age.

QUENT WILLIAMS, Production Manager, is a Colorado native who has lived in the Roaring Fork Valley since 1999. He graduated from Colorado State University with a bachelor’s degree in business and counts sailing the world with Semester at Sea a highlight of his college career. Quent’s first job after CSU was working as travel agent, later becoming the tour company’s production manager. Prior to joining Rock and Ice in 2002, he was the production manager of Climbing. In addition to traveling, he spends his spare time hiking, watching his kids’ sporting events, and searching for the perfect rum drink.

JORDAN HIRRO, Advertising Sales Manager, is fortunate enough to call himself a true Carbondale, Colorado native. He discovered climbing in college in Colorado Springs, after a day of hanging off drilled angles and pitons from the Layton Kor era to take pictures of his friends in Garden of the Gods. He soon realized actually climbing was much more fun than being latched to the anchor with a camera dangling from his chest, and in the years since he has climbed all over Colorado and the West, from Shelf to the Black Canyon to Indian Creek and beyond.

CINDY STRETZ, Circulation and Business Manager, is a graduate of St. Johns College in St. Augustine, Florida. She is new to Colorado but has always loved the mountains.  Cindy has been in the magazine business for over 21 years. She worked at Kable News for 10 years, then Palm Coast Data for another 10. Now she feels right at home at Big Stone Publishing. She has always loved to trail run and has done many races in Florida. She hopes to get back to running trails as soon as she adjusts to the altitude, what with spending the last 45 years as a flatlander.