Overall Rating
Overall Rating (2 Reviews)
4
(2 Ratings)(2 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
1
SCENERY
4.5
PRODUCTION
4
SWAG
4
May 2017 update: The Half Moon Bay International Marathon (HMBIM) today announced that the 2017 event will not be held, as organizers have been carefully monitoring the coastal trails in consideration of the HMBIM route. The California coastline has experienced heavy rains this winter potentially compromising multiple thoroughfares along the … MORE
Local Weather (Sep 17)
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H (°F) 66 68 65 81 65
L (°F) 57 53 57 62 56
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Recent reviews

    Angela FIRST-TIMER '16

    I ran this race with a friend as part of a long run while marathon training. It was pricier than I usually like to pay for a half ($95 I … MORE

    I ran this race with a friend as part of a long run while marathon training. It was pricier than I usually like to pay for a half ($95 I think?), but it was well-run and gorgeous, so I didn’t feel too bad about it. I registered in June or July I think and the half did end up selling out sometime after that.

    Parking was at 333 Airport Road & the start/finish area was .4 miles away at 371 Princeton Avenue. Officially the lot was scheduled to open at 6, but they opened at 5:40, which I appreciated. There were also shuttle buses running between the parking lot & start/finish area. Honestly it’s a pretty short, easy walk, but I am sure many of the full marathoners appreciated having the option to NOT walk .4 miles back to their cars.

    This was not a huge race (617 finishers in the half, 173 in the full), so the staging area was pretty compact, with the start/finish, a few sponsor tents, first aid tent, bib pickup, toilets, & bag drop all within a few dozen feet of each other. It was pretty easy to figure out & there were plenty of volunteers happy to answer questions & direct you to whatever you needed.

    The half marathon course was an out-and-back along a very nice, paved, virtually flat seaside path. Some parts were shaded but a lot of it was exposed. There were aid stations with water, sports drink, & sometimes gels maybe every couple of miles, and there were plenty of public bathrooms (mostly flush toilets) along the trail. (I believe the full marathon involves some non-technical trails and a few significant hills, because I accidentally ran part of it during my warm-up.)

    It’s hard to think about it when you’re 45 miles or so into a 53 mile week, but I actually think this could be a decent PR course. It’s flat and paved, and although it’s kind of curvy (so you have to pay attention to tangents) there aren’t too many actual turns. It probably won’t ever be cold, but the fact that it’s right on the ocean & starts early means it’s unlikely to ever get terribly hot. (The high this year was 82° and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky, and it was still fairly comfortable by 9-9:30.)

    Swag included a pretty nice medal, and maybe a shirt? I honestly do not know as I really just can’t with race shirts at this point. No one ever shoved one into my hands and I did not go looking for one. Also free snacks at the finish, and all the full-size Zola coconut waters you could guzzle. (I had one before the race and one after and at the time it was THE BEST thing I had ever tasted in my life.)

    Things to Know:
    * Apparently it’s selling out now, so don’t wait too long to register.
    * The fact that it’s an early start and takes place right on the ocean makes a huge difference temperature-wise, but still be prepared for full sun and moderately warm temps. It seems unlikely to me that this race would EVER be cold enough to warrant layers.
    * There is race day bib pickup (I did not know this ahead of time & wish I had).
    * There are shuttles between parking & the start. (Not that it’s that far, but it’s nice to know.)

    I enjoyed this race and had zero logistical problems with it. Yes, it is a bit pricey, but it’s also gorgeous, and the flat, paved course & friendly weather makes it potentially a good PR course. I’d recommend it to anyone not on a tight race budget.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    4
    My Report
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3
    My Media

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    M_Sohaskey Oct 11, 2016 at 8:24pm

    Great review! And nice to see this race is back after a couple of years away, since HMB seems like the perfect venue for running. This sounds like a cool alternative to Big Sur—especially for marathoners, given that Big Sur now has a lottery lock on it. Good idea too using the race as part of your weekend long run, I need to do that more often to shake things up.

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    UKCathryn FIRST-TIMER '13

    There's a lot to like about this race. It's in the lovely coastal town of Half Moon Bay, which has plentiful mid-range accommodation. The course is pretty much pancake-flat and … MORE

    There’s a lot to like about this race. It’s in the lovely coastal town of Half Moon Bay, which has plentiful mid-range accommodation. The course is pretty much pancake-flat and winds its way down the coast giving spectacular views of the Pacific. The weather is generally perfect – a cool start and a not-too-hot morning. The t-shirt is one of my favorite race t-shirts and the medal was spectacular – large, rotating and a sun-catcher to boot! It’s a great size – I’m not sure of the numbers but it wasn’t crowded at all so i was able to find my stride pretty much immediately. The only negative I can think of is that the race was measured incorrectly – the 1/2 marathon was about half a mile too long. This was addressed quickly by the organizers and the race took a break in 2014 whilst organizers ironed out that and other operational issues! I’d definitely do this race again.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    4
    My Report
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    5
    My Media

    1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

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