Overall Rating
Overall Rating (44 Reviews)
4.1
(44 Ratings)(44 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
3.2
SCENERY
4.1
PRODUCTION
4
SWAG
3.6
San Francisco’s Alaska Airlines Bay to Breakers is the oldest consecutively run annual footrace in the world, a staple to the City by the Bay since May 1912. With a starting point near the San Francisco Bay, a few blocks from The Embarcadero, the 12K race runs west through the … MORE
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Recent reviews

    Profile photo of Ed Moy
    edmoyactor REPEAT RUNNER '18

    This is San Francisco's most famous foot race. I've probably ran it about 3 or 4 times now. Well organized but crowded. Absolutely packed at the start line and along … MORE

    This is San Francisco’s most famous foot race. I’ve probably ran it about 3 or 4 times now. Well organized but crowded. Absolutely packed at the start line and along the route. Some of the best swag at the finish was the giveaway food and drinks from sponsors. The expo is also a fun one to attend.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    My Report
    SCENERY
    4
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    5

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    RacerKN REPEAT RUNNER '18

    It's funny when you see serious runners at this race. Or families who bring their little kids. This race was meant to be an expression of San Francisco with all … MORE

    It’s funny when you see serious runners at this race. Or families who bring their little kids. This race was meant to be an expression of San Francisco with all it’s strangeness. If you don’t like drunk people, or naked people, or people acting wildly, don’t run this race. If you want to PR, don’t run this race. If you want to participate in a unique foot race where coming in costume is a must, then run Bay to Breakers.
    Price is good. You can pay to have your bib mailed to you which is always an awesome option. And it’s so big and important that BART starts early for this race – SF Marathon doesn’t get this kind of treatment!

    DIFFICULTY
    1
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    3
    SCENERY
    3
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    3

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    Great for my first time. Wasn’t too sure what to expect but it was an awesome race. The only part that made me dislike the event was the difficulty in … MORE

    Great for my first time. Wasn’t too sure what to expect but it was an awesome race. The only part that made me dislike the event was the difficulty in getting back to the starting line. Didn’t like that they wanted to charge you to take you back. I think that should’ve been included. I thought they had partnered with lyft to make it easier but with so many streets blocked off lyft couldn’t even get into the area to pick us up.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    akira.inamori REPEAT RUNNER '18

    This is one of the funnest race in the world. It's a not running race, but a festival. So, you can run, walk, and drink! I highly recommend you if … MORE

    This is one of the funnest race in the world.
    It’s a not running race, but a festival.
    So, you can run, walk, and drink!
    I highly recommend you if you want to have a fun during running.
    You’ll be sure to want to join the race again !

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    5

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    dsnyrunner REPEAT RUNNER '18

    Bay to Breakers is a great way to celebrate. He course runs straight through the city from the Embarcadero to the Ocean. Great sites to see along the way. Residents … MORE

    Bay to Breakers is a great way to celebrate. He course runs straight through the city from the Embarcadero to the Ocean. Great sites to see along the way. Residents come out to support runners. The costumes are great.
    A

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
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    3

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    cyap69 REPEAT RUNNER '18

    This is only my third time doing the Bay to Breakers. It's always fun! I enjoy seeing all the costumes (or lack thereof). I also like all the giveaways at … MORE

    This is only my third time doing the Bay to Breakers. It’s always fun! I enjoy seeing all the costumes (or lack thereof). I also like all the giveaways at the expo and at the end of the race. I’ll definitely consider doing it again.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    4

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    johnruns FIRST-TIMER '18

    This race is more about the journey than the finish line. It's people watching, crazy costumes, and the pure joy of a 12K long party! Highly recommended for the experience … MORE

    This race is more about the journey than the finish line. It’s people watching, crazy costumes, and the pure joy of a 12K long party! Highly recommended for the experience and memories!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    Profile photo of Sterling Munksgard
    bmwmunk FIRST-TIMER '18

    By far this has been my favorite race I’ve done! Bay to Breakers has it all. The runners are there to party and have a great time start to finish. … MORE

    By far this has been my favorite race I’ve done! Bay to Breakers has it all. The runners are there to party and have a great time start to finish. The shirt is great, the medals are fantastic. Hayes hill is no joke. But the crowds along the course cheered everyone on. It was so much fun. Well organized, fun course. This race is a must!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
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    5
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    5
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    carijyao FIRST-TIMER '18

    I entered the race as part of the centipede, which was a unique experience in its own way. I really like how the course goes from east side of the … MORE

    I entered the race as part of the centipede, which was a unique experience in its own way. I really like how the course goes from east side of the city all the way to the beach, which covers almost all the. iconic parts of San Francisco. Although mostly flat, the Hayes St hill climb still gave runners some margins to improve and challenge themselves. Did I mention the costumes? It was indeed a party for the city of San Francisco.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
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    4
    SCENERY
    5
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    3

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    It’s pretty fun with all the music - the city cheers you on and parties as you fly by. Of course you will see a naked man or two along … MORE

    It’s pretty fun with all the music – the city cheers you on and parties as you fly by. Of course you will see a naked man or two along the way but it’s good fun (maybe not child appropriate)

    DIFFICULTY
    3
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    5
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    5
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    3
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    kenkubey REPEAT RUNNER '18

    The good: Corrals were well organized. The start went well. Mile markers were better this year. Water stops were good-sized and well staffed. Lots of good music along the course. … MORE

    The good: Corrals were well organized. The start went well.
    Mile markers were better this year. Water stops were good-sized and
    well staffed. Lots of good music along the course. Lots of clever costumes.
    Beautiful course.

    The bad: The finish area was very crowded and disorganized. I got a bottle of water and banana without much trouble. Found people giving out finisher medals quickly. Couldn’t find the t-shirt area easily. When I finally found it, the poor kids were holding up hand-printed signs on cardboard to show the different sizes (SM, M, L, XL.) DISORGANIZED!!!

    Saw many people with sealed 6 -pack or 12-pack boxes of the Peet’s coffee samples. It would have been nice if each runner could get one can. Was no one handing out samples? Did people just grab boxes? Something was really screwy.

    Please spend some money on a HUGE sign to show where the t-shirt distribution is and spend some money on t-shirt size signs also.

    Overall, the race was a lot of fun. I’ll be back next year.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    2
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    2

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    Profile photo of Jenny Seay
    seabird78 REPEAT RUNNER '18

    This was my second time participating in Bay to Breakers, and I think I enjoyed it more than I did my first time out, because I wasn't as overwhelmed. The … MORE

    This was my second time participating in Bay to Breakers, and I think I enjoyed it more than I did my first time out, because I wasn’t as overwhelmed. The Hayes Street Hill is quite challenging, and the crowds tend to hem you in, so I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone seeking to PR. But if you want a really fun morning of zany costumes while enjoying the sights and sounds of San Francisco, this is definitely a race to try. The Golden Gate Park portion of the course was what I found most enjoyable, both for the scenic nature on display, and the relatively flat pavement that lets you make up for the time you lost on the inclines. There are also a few live bands positioned throughout the park, and they kept me going when I was starting to lose steam. You can run the whole thing straight if you keep an easy pace, and it’s really great to be rewarded with an ocean view upon finishing. Very crowded, but well run given how many participants that need managing!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    kalinarun FIRST-TIMER '18

    As a new resident to the Bay Area, I had no idea the type of race I signed up for. I did not expect nudity on the course. I was … MORE

    As a new resident to the Bay Area, I had no idea the type of race I signed up for. I did not expect nudity on the course. I was shocked and disgusted by it. The whole race seemed to be like one giant party. People were entering and exiting the course while I was running through. I could not race this course. It was a horrible experience. I didn’t expect it to be like this. I really wish you had stated on your website about the nude runners because I would have never signed up. It’s just not a type of race I would run.

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    2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

    PeteSinCA May 21, 2018 at 5:55pm

    Re the nudity, I don't know what to say. I've lived in the Bay Are for 4 decades and knew B2B's reputation long before I started doing races. But you're new here and I can see it being a very dismaying surprise. I seldom do SF races for logistical reasons, but B2B's atmosphere disinclines me toward doing it even more. I guess other reviewers were so familiar with that aspect of B2B that they didn't think it necessary to comment on it.

    That said, B2B is the only Bay Area race I'm aware of like that. The Bay Area has some really good local organizers, indy races, plus a couple of Rock 'n' Roll events. I think you'll find many that are more to your liking. Welcome!

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    kalinarun May 21, 2018 at 6:39pm

    Thank you! Yes I’ve ran a few other races in the Bay Area and have no complaints. I’m more of a serious runner. But I don’t mind seeing costumes on a course. I think it’s fun. But this type of race caught me by surprise with the nudity and it also seemed more like a party than a race. I wish they had mentioned it on their website when registering.

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    PeteSinCA May 22, 2018 at 5:39am

    Yes, I saw the reviews you posted last evening. Three were of races organized by Brazen Running, one of my favorite local organizers. Coastal Trail Runs and Inside Trail Runs are also great organizers. Near you, Baylands Park has some nice trails, with connections to to trails that follow creeks into Sunnyvale and Santa Clara. A bit north of near Woodside is Huddart Park. It has lots of hilly trails and is used for races by several organizers, including Coastal and Inside. For my part I'm kind of a serious walker. If time endurance runs interest you, look into Brazen's "Dirty Dozen". It's like a serious trail run merged with a family picnic.

     
    altods REPEAT RUNNER '18

    Awesome, unforgettable course! This race has everything--world class runners, 50,000+ other participants, great sites, parties and it finishes in the best park in the world!! MORE

    Awesome, unforgettable course! This race has everything–world class runners, 50,000+ other participants, great sites, parties and it finishes in the best park in the world!!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    RunKMacRun FIRST-TIMER '18

    This is an odd one. it's a 12K with the option to do a bonus 3K and earn a second medal. It is also a part of the SF Original … MORE

    This is an odd one. it’s a 12K with the option to do a bonus 3K and earn a second medal. It is also a part of the SF Original Race Series challenge. This race isn’t typical in a lot of ways. for 2018 there were about 35,000 participants! Bring cash for on course. People are selling food and booze the entire way. Also be prepared for nudity! Lots and lots of nudity. 😉 Everyone was super nice and a very friendly race. Plan ahead and stay for the after part at the finish line.

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    trainwithv REPEAT RUNNER '18

    in 2017 I hated this race!!! I swore to never do it again, i didn't want to watch people peeing in public, be next to drunk people and people smoking … MORE

    in 2017 I hated this race!!! I swore to never do it again, i didn’t want to watch people peeing in public, be next to drunk people and people smoking marijuana right in the corrals, and the way too many naked people BUT this year, 2018, it was so much fun!!! Greater police presence, which created a fun not drunk or high atmosphere, people didn’t jump in from the sides, we could actually run!! I did the 15k, the first year of the bonus. Really do it, it is SF at its best.

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    m.cimeno REPEAT RUNNER '17

    Bay to Breakers is fun, if you let go of trying to PR and accept the fact that there will be bottleneck during the first 2 miles (even if you're … MORE

    Bay to Breakers is fun, if you let go of trying to PR and accept the fact that there will be bottleneck during the first 2 miles (even if you’re in Corral A). I have ran this race four times, and every time, until this year, I got annoyed with walkers in early corrals and drunk spectators jumping on the course. So, if you truly enjoy racing for speed/time, I would not recommend this run. If you want to experience the race- the costumes, nudity, historic course, etc; then definitely do it!

    For the course: I enjoy running up Hayes Hill, and definitely like the rollers throughout Golden Gate Park. Once you enter the park, you have more space and can push the pace. People should be aware, the weather at the starting point, through the park, and at the finish line can change drastically!

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    3
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    4
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    2
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    sweetaskandib REPEAT RUNNER '17

    My husband and I ran this race together for the first time this year and we had a blast. The weather was a bit on the hot side this year … MORE

    My husband and I ran this race together for the first time this year and we had a blast. The weather was a bit on the hot side this year but all of the costumes and partying makes the run fly by. We took home tons of goodies from the finish line festival which was surprising considering the turnout this year. We will surely be back next year

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    shinianen FIRST-TIMER '17

    I have been pining over racing Bay to Breakers for years. Running? Costumes? Beaches? Sunshine? California? Sign me up! Yet, for some reason, every year since it came onto my … MORE

    I have been pining over racing Bay to Breakers for years. Running? Costumes? Beaches? Sunshine? California? Sign me up!

    Yet, for some reason, every year since it came onto my radar, I’ve always been unavailable for Bay to Breakers weekend. But … in 2017 the stars aligned. Well, technically, the stars started to align in 2016, as that’s when my husband realized that point prices were REALLY low for airline and hotel reservations, and he had plenty of points (and then some) to cover us.

    So late last fall, with my sister roped in to my shenanigans and our travel reservations booked, we started planning costumes for Bay to Breakers. Because that’s the most important part, duh!

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    PeteSinCA May 25, 2017 at 11:46am

    Has a new race started calling you yet?

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    shinianen May 26, 2017 at 8:32am

    Thanks for all the new suggestions! Definitely some things to think about. I had a baby about a year ago, so I'm in terrible shape these days. Used to be a 10K or half was no big deal. Now a 5 miler at a 11 min/mile is a challenge. I'll get back there eventually. At least the reason for the fitness loss is a good one!

    I'm really interested in the idea of seeing redwood trees on the run. Are any of those races doable for a flat road runner who is around a 10K capacity? (Meaning, not too hilly, not super aggressive trail running)

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    shinianen May 26, 2017 at 4:23pm

    Thanks for all the suggestions! I've definately got some thinking to do now! :-)

    PeteSinCA May 26, 2017 at 12:16pm

    Looking at the Big River Run and Whale Run & Walk, the latter starts in Fort Bragg and pretty much follows the shore rather than running into to forest. OTOH, the start is at the station for the Skunk Train, that goes into the forest to Willits and then back. The Big River Run is described thus, "The flat and wide course meanders along the northern bank of Big River where runners will race out and back ...". It has 5K, 10K, and half marathon distances. Mendocino is a way further up the Mendocino Coast, and the show "Murder She Wrote" did filming there. Of the 3 I described, Superhero run is sort of close to San Jose International Airport, while Big River and/or Gualala River would be my choices for a vacation race. I love the Mendo-noma Coast - not touristy, just amazingly beautiful. BTW, congratulations about your little one!

    PeteSinCA May 26, 2017 at 11:44am

    That's a good question, and FWIW, I'm in the 15-16 minute mile range. Anyway, a race I didn't mention, the Superhero Race (Aptos, CA) has 5K, 10K, and 15K distances, is an out-and-back into the redwoods, and has a fairly moderate climb. The RR page for the race links to the race website and there is a Rave, ;) . The Gualala River Run, http://www.actionnetwork.info/riverrun.htm, looks pretty reasonable. It starts near where the Gualala River flows into the ocean and follows the river into a redwood forest. Logistically it would not be a 2-3 day trip, but spending a couple of days exploring the Sonoma-Mendocino coast would be an amazing vacation (e.g. Fort Ross, the Point Arena Lighthouse). The GRR has 5K and 10K distances.

    shinianen May 25, 2017 at 12:05pm

    Not yet ... though I'm open to suggestions! Got any?

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    PeteSinCA May 26, 2017 at 7:11am

    Depending on your tastes, I may be one of the best or one of the worst to ask. (and brevity is not my gift) I do mostly small-medium trail races. So I haven't done many large big-name races – 1000s of runners, on-course entertainment and cheering locals. I'll try to use race names, so you can check out the Raves.

    In the SF Bay Area, doing a race that crosses the Golden Gate Bridge is pretty much a must. Quite a few races do that – I did Rock 'n' Roll Hlf back in 2013. The Santa Cruz Half Marathon is gorgeous, and ends on the beach, close to Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. One of the Surfer's Path races would be similarly beautiful. There's a marathon and other distances in Big Sur that's supposed to be gorgeous.

    In smaller races, a couple of organizers do races at Point Pinole (Nitro Trail, Zoom Point Pinole, Dirty Dozen, and Nitro Turkey, the latter on Thanksgiving), a beautiful venue, with family-like atmosphere. Brazen Racing's Wildcat half marathon and 10K are tough and amazing. Pacifica Foothills and Montara Mountain near Pacifica are pretty amazing (and pretty tough). A number of races use Huddart Park near Woodside, Crystal Springs, Woodside Ramble, and Tick Trailblaze being some. Several races use the trails between Felton and Santa Cruz, e.g. San Lorenzo River Trail Run, Santa Cruz Trail Run, and Race Thru the Redwoods – I did that last one in 2016, will be doing San Lorenzo in June, and plan on doing SCTR in August. Check the Raves, check the races' elevation profiles.

    Brazen Racing's Rocky Ridge half marathon is calling me, as it's the final and mandatory race in a very challenging series. It's one of the most challenging in the series, and also features some 180-360-degree vistas of the East Bay. I did the 10K last year, and that was one of the toughest races I've done. Some of the other races calling me are a bit more distant and almost remote: the Whale Run & Walk in Fort Bragg, CA; Armstrong Redwoods in Guerneville; Salt Point Trail Run in Jenner; Humboldt Bay Marathon & Half in Eureka and Arcata; Half Moon Bay International Marathon, Half Marathon, & 5K; Clo-Cow Half Marathon & 5K in Petaluma; Gualala River Run in Gualala; PAL Big River Run and Walk in Mendocino. Except for Clo-Cow and Armstrong Redwoods (Redwood forest, near the Russian River,not far from Jenner), those are all in seashore towns, many featuring ocean views. Petaluma is near the Napa Valley wine country, and not far from the Marin Peninsula (opposite SF and a popular venue for trail races) and Bodega and Tomales Bays.

     
    Socorro REPEAT RUNNER '17

    The most fun run/race ever! Embrace your inner child and dress up in whatever outfit tickles your funny bone. You will be in great company. Awesome shirt & medal and … MORE

    The most fun run/race ever! Embrace your inner child and dress up in whatever outfit tickles your funny bone. You will be in great company. Awesome shirt & medal and so well organized! Just do it!?

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