Overall Rating
Overall Rating (2 Reviews)
4
(2 Ratings)(2 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
3.5
SCENERY
3.5
PRODUCTION
4
SWAG
4.5
Local Weather (Jul 17)
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H (°F) 72 86 78 73 73
L (°F) 53 61 62 59 59
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Recent reviews

    sfgal78 REPEAT RUNNER '14

    i first ran this race 3 years ago and very much enjoyed the event, but was not able to participate the past 2 years. fortunately, my schedule allowed me to … MORE

    i first ran this race 3 years ago and very much enjoyed the event, but was not able to participate the past 2 years. fortunately, my schedule allowed me to return to los gatos and participate in this event this year.

    for this event, participants had 2 events to choose from:
    half marathon (13.1 miles)
    10k (6.2 miles)

    i chose the half since it was the distance i ran 3 years ago and i’d hoped to better my time this year! i guess 3 is my lucky number, b/c i beat my time by 3 minutes!

    the pros:
    +GREAT RACE DAY conditions, about 59 & cloudy at the start which was awesome for july (sun did not come out until about 1 1/2 hours into the race)
    +MEDIUM-SIZED event with 1000 or so total participants, most of whom were local runners
    +BIB AND PACKET pickup party 2 days before the race at running revolution in campbell and on the eve of the race at athletic performance in los gatos, both of which are near the event site. if you couldn’t make either one, you could pickup your packet the morning of near the start line.
    +at least 3 different areas with PORTA-POTTIES near the start line, along with portable soap and water dispensers. lines weren’t too bad pre-race.
    +FREE PARKING at los gatos high school, either by the track (right next to the start line) or at the front of the school (just a couple blocks away)
    +AWESOME PACERS! i saw signs ranging from 1:30 to 2:15 and know that these volunteers gave their time and efforts to helping many of us achieve our goals for this race. i want to especially thank my pacer, linh, who paced the 1:50 group for keeping us entertained and motivated throughout the entire course, especially the last stretch going up the hill!
    +SCENIC COURSE from mile 5 to the end along los gatos creek trail and heading up to the lexington reservoir area, decent amount of shade while on course!
    +CLEAR MILE MARKER signage at every mile, except for 13 since it was the final turn before the finish line
    +VARIETY OF POST-RACE REFRESHMENTS, which included bagels, cream cheese, bananas, plums, nectarines, and strawberries. they also had snow cones this year, which was a nice bonus since it was very warm after the race!
    -LOTS OF FRIENDLY VOLUNTEERS assisting with bib pickup and registration pre-race, manning the aid stations on the course, directing traffic (especially on some potentially confusing turns) and handing out medals and bottled water at the finish line
    -$50 for half marathon if you did early bird registration, $65 if registering closer to the event date. very reasonable considering what you get in return.
    -UNIQUE JUNGLE RUN FINISHER’S MEDAL with a tiger on it!
    -DRI-FIT SHIRT with a big colourful tiger on the back (matched the medal this year!) i especially appreciated the fact that they had both women’s cut and men’s cut tshirts this year.
    -JUNGLE-THEMED TOP FINISHER PRIZES. while i didn’t place at this event, i did get to see some of the awards ceremony and the unique “jungle-themed” awards that were presented to the top finishers, including a totem-pole-like plaque and small tiger statue.

    the cons:
    -not really an ideal “pr” course since this course has many rolling hills, is net downhill for the first half, and net uphill for the second half, with a steady incline from miles 10-11.5 (when legs are very tired)
    -first part of the half marathon (up to mile 5) was a bit boring since we ran along residential streets
    -while mile markers were present at every mile, i found that most of them were a bit short of the actual distance, esp since my garmin signaled each mile completion after i passed the official race markers. i also got 13.04 miles at the end, which falls slightly short of the true half marathon distance of 13.11 miles.

    overall, a very well-organized local event and a great excuse for visiting los gatos, one of the nicer towns in the bay area that i rarely visit since it’s a bit of a trek for me. i hope to be back next year for this event and attempt to beat my time again!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    4

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    PeteSinCA FIRST-TIMER '14

    Course description: The Jungle Run is run mostly or entirely in Los Gatos, CA. The start and finish area is at the Los Gatos High School athletic field, and the … MORE

    Course description:
    The Jungle Run is run mostly or entirely in Los Gatos, CA. The start and finish area is at the Los Gatos High School athletic field, and the course takes Los Gatos streets (some residential, some business) from LGHS to Los Gatos Creek Park, taking runners onto the Los Gatos Creek Trail. From this park the course follows the trail through Vasona Lake Park, past Los Gatos High School, past the Forbes Mill Museum in Los Gatos, goes up the trail about 2/3 of the way to Lexington Reservoir, and then turns around and heads back to the finish at LGHS. It’s very easy to misjudge the challenge of this course, as it has no significant hills, but it is steadily uphill the whole 5-6 miles from Los Gatos Creek Park to the turn around near the reservoir (http://www.mapmyrun.com/us/los-gatos-ca/los-gatos-jungle-run-1-2-marathon-route-40874942). Also, because it is run in July it can get warm as the race progresses. The part of the course along the Los Gatos Creek Trail is quite beautiful; the residential areas of Los Gatos are very pleasant; the business areas, 2-3 miles, are business areas.

    Organization & Production:
    The Race organizer is Firstwave Events. I would rate the organization of this race fair-to-very-good rather than excellent. The most important stuff like registration, bib pick-up, venue, parking and check-in, porta-potties, and aid stations were all done well. My main complaints are related to my having been among the last finishers. Race T-shirts were given out at the finish, and by the time I finished they had but one of my preferred size left. Knowing a later finisher might want it, I chose the next size larger, which fit fine. Also, by the time I finished some of the finish area activities people were packing up or leaving. Hopefully Firstwave noticed and will address these issues that do diminish the race experience some. That said, I would do the Jungle Run again, and may do so in 2015.

    Addendum, 5/15 & 6/26: This was only my 4th small-medium sized event. I’ve done 10 or 11 since, which has adjusted my expectations. I’ve changed my “Race Production” rating above to reflect this, down a notch (OK, one less shoe). I’ve participated in two more of this organizer’s events, the Morgan Hill and the Santa Cruz Half Marathons. I’ve reviewed both here on Race Raves. More to the point, the minor T-shirt annoyance I experienced at the 2014 Jungle Run was repeated at the SCHM, except without receiving a T-Shirt that fits. It looks like Firstwave’s events get a lot of late registrants and Firstwave’s planning leaves slower participants (slower than 13 minute mile pace is my guesstimate) susceptible to the disappointment of finishing but not receiving a race T-shirt that fits. I did contact Firstwave about this, and was less than satisfied with their (inadequate) communications. I had registered for the 2015 Jungle Run, but Firstwave had to cancel it.

    Swag & Goodies:
    The tiger-themed race T-shirt, bib, and finishers’ medal are among my favorites of the ones I have (see pix). The T-shirt has a small, colorful, graphic of a tiger where a pocket would be if the shirt had one. On the back the graphic of the tiger is large. And colorful! The bib features a tiger in the background behind the bib number, with the race name across the top, and the date and location across the bottom. The finisher’s medal features the tiger’s face in orange on a silver background. All in all, very cool!

    Between my cramping calves, not wanting to throw up, and being discouraged and discouraged, I didn’t pay a lot of attention to the finish area goodies. I grabbed a bottled water from a ice-water-filled tub near the finish, and I noticed that some of the activity vendors were packing or packed up. While I was among the last 10-20 finishers, I was not the last. I completely understand the vendors’ people wanting to spend as much of a Sunday PM with their families and friends as possible, but they are in the finish area to advertise their products and services by being part of runners’ race experience.

    Firstwave needs to work on this, particularly for slower racers, whose race experience could be (and WAS) diminished by unexpectedly heavy late registrations and giving out race T-shirts at the finish first-finished-first-served. These are organization issues, but are experienced – if they are – in the finish area.

    My Results & Opinion of the Race:
    Personally, I was under-prepared and misjudged the course. I had had an injury 2 months previous, and I had had bronchitis the previous month. Both had limited my preparation some, but that’s life. Working with, around, and through what life “throws” at you is the context for exercise and event like this. I was too aggressive early in the race, and around the 11th or 12th mile my calves started cramping, which hampered me late in the race. Mea goofa!

    Would I do the Jungle Run again? My answer, now in June, 2015, has changed and is, “No, not anytime soon.” Since I originally wrote this I’ve had further, discouraging, experience with the organizer, Firstwave. The 2014 Morgan Hill Marathon and Half Marathon, organized by Firstwave had gone well. The T-shirts were given out with the bibs at pre-race packet pick-up. And there being a marathon distance meant activities and services were still there for late finishers of the half. Things were not so good with the Santa Cruz Half Marathon in April, 2015. When I finished (with some 20 more behind me) I went straight to the T-shirts table. They were out of the size I asked for when I registered. They were out of the next size larger. I took the next size smaller, just to have something, but was – correctly – sure it would not fit. I have, since, seen a review of the SCHM on Yelp written by a woman who also finished late, and had the same disappointment. I had some email contact with Firstwave, which sounded promising at first, but fizzled into nothing (an “F” for Communication, and an “F” for Customer Service!).

    For all that, I had done the SCHM as one of three races for the Bay Area Running Series, so I registered to do the Jungle Run, and planned to do the MHHM. Then, about 6 weeks before race day, Firstwave canceled, due to the start/finish area at LGHS being under construction and not being able to find a suitable alternative venue. I’m not entirely satisfied with the latter part of the explanation, but canceling so late made finding an alternative race a bit of a scramble for me, was past the time when organizers gave discounted prices for early registrants.

    So, even though the Jungle Run is practically in my back yard and the Santa Cruz Half Marathon and Morgan Hill Marathon and Half Marathon are very reasonable drives from my home, I will not do these races as long as Firstwave is the organizer, unless I learn, somehow, that Firstwave has improved their organization so that early registering late finishers do not risk a disappointing and frustrating race experience because they are slower.
    I’ve participated in 19 half marathons and 7 races of other distances since late 2011. I don’t burn up the asphalt or the trail, but I can say that the SF Bay Area does NOT lack for excellent race organizers and indie-organized races! I hope a time comes when events like the Jungle Run, the SCHM, and MHHM have an excellent organizer, whether some other organizer or an improved Firstwave.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    5
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  1. Races
  2. Jungle Run Half Marathon & 10K