I don’t know where to start with this race maybe because I have ran too many half marathon this year and I am starting to become immune to bad events. So I will just start at the beginning. Pre-race was weird it just kinda started without any warning or countdown so we hoped in from the parking lot and got going. Right away the course was not marked clearly and most everyone went the wrong way which tacked on extra mile and lead us out of the park.
We were then taken out on the road shared with cars. I am no stranger to running on the road I hate sidewalks I run in oncoming traffic all week long but this was on a very narrow road and it was hard for cars to see us. In my opinion it was unsafe. Not only that we had to wait for cars several times so right away it made running for time a huge issue.
Next we were taken on to a steep dirt trail with loose gravel with lead to a creek. Runners formed a single file line and had to cross on the rocks hoping not to fall in. A few girls did fall in a the volunteer nearby was nice enough to yell ” no swimming” as joke. I am sure those ladies appreciated running in soft dirt with wet shoes for an additional 9 miles. The best part was that you got to cross the creek twice during the race.
This race course snaked around parking lots several times through a campground and up steep hills it was just all over the place.I saw runners out just wrecked looking defeated and hopeless. I saw many jumping the course and cutting it short because it just snaked around the parking lots and they just said forget this. Because the course was not clearly marked and I followed other confused runners my Garmin distance was 14.48. I am not screaming the course was long and Race Grader does not have to to post an article about how GPS isn’t always accurate. This was just a poorly marked course and easy to get lost on. I had many WTF moments out there. I just wish I had been better informed about the course and worn trail shoes. I like hills and dirt but not so much when I am prepared for it.
When I finally crossed the finish line they had ran out of everything expect water. They also had stupid song playing over and over on a loop and we had listen to for hour while we waited for the rest of out friends. I saw someone collapse at the finish line and they had no first aide/medical on site. The paramedics were pretty quick and took her away.
I never saw medical on the course once and that was pretty lame considering runners were on trails most the time. They did not had Cliff shits or GU which was fine with me I brought my own. I saw they had an electrolyte drink but also saw people spitting it out so it must have been pretty nasty.
The medal was really nice and I really appreciated the nice tech tank for a change but that’s all I liked about this race. I know if I want an awesome race with great course support that is well organized then only run big events like Surf City and Long Beach. I can still appreciate these small events I just don’t like paying $85.00 for a mess. I felt bad for a lot of runners out on the course. I saw many ladies running it as a first time half marathon and not having the easiest time out there. I saw the looks on there faces as they crossed and I just hoped they knew not all races suck like that and don’t give up just go out and sign up for another one.