Wrapped up the 2012 running season with a spectacular course near Sausilto. The race director told me the good weather permit they purchased from the city cost a fortune, but it was worth it ;) Cloudless skies, temperature in the 50’s, very little wind and a decent track to run. Garmin tells me this course had 5,300 ft of gain. The course looped through the Marin Headlands and on the Coastal Trail with views of the Pacific, Sausilto, San Francisco and of course the Golden Gate Bridge. Garmin route here.
Below, I also have pics of the some of the sight seeing I did the day prior to the race, but first to the main event.
This is the view of the start line with the black sands of Rodeo Beach just after the sunrise crested the distant hills.
Modest group of about 50-50K, some 30K, half marathon and 8K runners listen to the pre-race instructions. The course was basically a figure 8 where the bottom part of 8 the is run twice. The top part of the 8 loops through the Pirates Cove area and the bottom part closer to Sausilto and the Golden Gate Bridge.
This is the charge from the start line up the first hill, every bit of it runnable. That is what I really liked about this course.
The fog burned off within an hour of the start and gave the course an eerily beautiful feeling.
After cresting the first hill, we plunged down into the fog…….
This is the climb between 4 and 6 on the profile above and I think the steepest part of the course. But once you get to the top….
There are some spectacular views.
This section here was a blast, heading west, bombing it downhill towards the Pacific and Pirates Cove….
Pirates Cove. At this point, the loop heads back south and onto the Coastal Trail.
And guess what you see on the Costal Trail? Yep.
Between 10-12 and 23-24, there is a great steady soft uphill with a Sausilto view. If you have climbing legs and want to compete, it is the time to real some people in! (I went from finishing 20th to 13th on this hill as I passed 7 people on the second loop. Thanks Colorado)
The eastern most portion of the course is the highlight. At this point, my camera died on the first loop so I dropped it at the car and completed the second loop with more of a racing mentality. Finished at 5:23 for 13th place out of 48.
The day prior to the race, I headed out to Muir Woods and Point Reyes National Seashore. Great scenery which included some grey whales at Point Reyes.
Taking a stroll through Muir Woods below.
This is an area called the Cathedral. The sun came out for a few minutes and lit up the fog.
On to Point Reyes Drakes Beach.
And the view near Point Reyes Lighthouse. I have some pictures taken form the beach shown here where the surf had to be 10+ feet.
Point Reyes Lighthouse. There were several grey whales near by.
And some more roaring surf.
Whatever these plants were, they covered all of the dunes…
The massive dunes of North Reyes Beach
And the massive surf to match.
What else can I say?