Overall Rating
Overall Rating (22 Reviews)
4.5
(22 Ratings)  (22 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
4.3
SCENERY
4.8
PRODUCTION
4.4
SWAG
3.9
The La Jolla Half Marathon is one of San Diego California’s most picturesque and beautiful point-to-point races. Starting at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, the course follows a scenic coastal route along the San Diego coast and reaches the challenging climb to the summit of Torrey Pines State Park. The race … MORE
Local Historical Weather (May 17):
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L (°F)  56  57  58  58  61
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Recent reviews

    FusedLJHalf5K REPEAT RUNNER '24

    The La Jolla Half Marathon, a race that seamlessly fits into your (runcation) calendar! The fact that it takes place on a Saturday, not a Sunday, was a major plus … MORE

    The La Jolla Half Marathon, a race that seamlessly fits into your (runcation) calendar! The fact that it takes place on a Saturday, not a Sunday, was a major plus for me. It meant I could run, finish by 9:30 a.m., and fully immerse myself in the fantastic Finish Line Festival without any rush or stress.

    The La Jolla Half Marathon doesn’t just offer a great running experience, but also some fantastic swag. As a participant, you’ll receive a finisher’s shirt, a medal, a tote bag, and even free race photos. But that’s not all. The race also provides additional perks like a recovery area with free massages, cupping, and cold plunges for all runners.

    Prepare for a day filled with excitement and joy! The La Jolla Half Marathon offers an extraordinary running experience, a vibrant atmosphere with delicious food, lively music, and exciting vendors like Albion Fit, Blenders Eyewear, and STANCE, all against the stunning backdrop of the Pacific Ocean. If you, like me, enjoy races with great swag, fun after-parties, and thrilling destinations, this is a Runcation you absolutely cannot miss!

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

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    MilesOStridin REPEAT RUNNER '24

    If you’re ready for hills that will take your breath away— because of the views and your gasping lungs—the La Jolla Half Marathon is an incredible race. Expo / pick-up: … MORE

    If you’re ready for hills that will take your breath away— because of the views and your gasping lungs—the La Jolla Half Marathon is an incredible race.

    Expo / pick-up:

    -The runner’s expo and packet pickup was staged at Ellen Browning Scripps Park in La Jolla. The waterfront park give you a preview of not only the coastal views of the race, but also of the finish line staging area. Numerous sponsors and vendors were on-site if you needed any running/health gear, including Hydrapak, Zym, Stance, and Blenders. A new addition this year was food vendors like House of Bao, Smashed Avocado Toast, and Falafel Express. Can you say “carb-loading”? And for the first time, this year’s race was billed as a “cup-less” race. This meant that instead of grabbing paper cups of water/electrolytes at the aid stations, runners were given a reusable, collapsible Hydrapak cup that they could fill from giant water tanks or from pitcher-wielding volunteers. A water tank and dispenser was set up in the park to give runners a chance to practice their filling technique. Parking in La Jolla is always tough. You can try hunting for street parking, but it helps to check out La Jolla tourism sites like https://lajollabythesea.com/visitor-information-2/ to look up parking locations.

    Parking:

    -The La Jolla Half Marathon is a point-to-point course. You can either park at the start at Del Mar Fairgrounds (and take a post-race shuttle back), or park at the La Jolla finish line (and take a pre-race shuttle to the start). I opted for the latter, and took the early-morning shuttles, which began running at 4:30 and ran until 5:15 am. The shuttle trip was easy, and took about 25 minutes from Ellen Browning Scripps park to the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

    Pre-race:

    -The Del Mar Fairgrounds parking lot served as the start line area. Amenities included a water station, plenty of port-a-potties (with hand sanitizer stations), and gear check. Restroom lines get longer the closer you get to the race-start time, so go early! If you use gear check, remember to bring your official gear check bag issued to you at the expo. Unlike previous years, I didn’t see a coffee/food truck in the parking lot. The start corral was simple, divided by pacers holding up estimated finish times and mile times. There were also corral time banners, but the text ran from bottom-to-top, so it was difficult to see amongst the crowds. I wish the organizers could flip them upside down.

    The Course:

    -The Half Marathon course kicks off by outlining the southern, eastern, and northern boundaries of the Del Mar Fairgrounds, before turning south on Camino Del Mar, right past the Del Mar Dog Beach, and through residential areas. Before Mile 3, around Powerhouse Beach, some small hills ramp up. Don’t be surprised, they’re just a little taste of bigger ones to come! The course dives downhill at Mile 4, opening a gorgeous view of Torrey Pines Road Bridge as well as the rest of Torrey Pines in the distance. Before you know it, you’re enjoying a pleasant, flat cruise along Torrey Pines State Beach. Right around Mile 5.5, it’s a daunting climb up into Torrey Pines State Park. You’ll face more than 400 feet of elevation gain in the next mile and a half. It’s a real test for your legs and lungs, accompanied by a soundtrack of all the other runners around you huffing and puffing! Once you hit the top of Torrey Pines, you’ll still ride gentle hills as you navigate past the park, Scripps hospitals, and UC San Diego. What goes up must come down, and Mile 10 brings the long descent down La Jolla Shores Drive. You trade shaded hills for a flat path and ocean views at La Jolla Shores Beach. It’s a lovely stretch with salty sea breeze, the squawks of sea gulls, and early-morning beachgoers. But don’t relax! One last hill awaits at Mile 12: a 130-foot climb up Spindrift Drive and Torrey Pines Road. It’s not close to the towering elevation at Torrey Pines, but its location this close to the end is formidable. Push through, and you’ll coast downhill along the cobblestones of Coast Blvd and through to the grassy finish line at Scripps Park.

    Scenery/Weather/Support:

    -This isn’t a big race with DJs, bands, cheer squads, or giant crowds of sign-toting supporters. Nope! It’s a quieter race that invites you to soak up the gorgeous coastal views, tremendous hills, and constant sea breeze. Course hydration this year was a question mark for me as the race decided to go “cup-less”. While I appreciate the attempt at less paper waste, it definitely took a bit more time to refill your reusable cup at each water station, either from the water tanks or from volunteers with pitchers. This was my first time running cup-less, and compared to classic water stations, I would estimate it added an extra 15 or so seconds at each station for me to pull my cup out of my pocket, fill up, drink, shake off any leftover drops, then stash away my cup. It’s not a huge deal, and maybe I’ll get used to it with more practice, but the time does add up. The other alternative would be to bring your own hydration (vest, belt, handheld, etc.), but the added weight isn’t something I’d like during a race. I also wish there was a water station at the top of the Torrey Pines State Park climb, but park rules probably prevent that. It was a cool, overcast day with little direct sunlight—great for running! Temperatures ranged from 58F at the start line to the low 60s by the end.

    Post-race:

    -Besides a finisher medal, the finish-line goodies included a banana, Kirkland chocolate milk, Nature Valley Sweet & Salty Peanut bars, but no Jam Bars or protein bars like in previous years. The post-race festival featured a band, a beer festival, and tents for massage, sponsors and merch sales. Don’t forget to visit gear check if you dropped off items in the morning, and pick up your official race shirt if you did race-day bib pick-up. The same food vendors from the expo were also on hand to serve hungry bellies. All in all, Ellen Browning Scripps Park and La Jolla Cove is an incredible post-race location. Green grass, palm trees over rocky shores, crashing waves, and seals in the cove! Small patches of blue sky were starting to peek through the clouds too.

    Swag:

    -One of my favorite things about the La Jolla Half is learning what the eye-catching shirt design will be, and this year was no exception. The official race shirt came in a top-to-bottom indigo/lavender/white gradient, with a lavender palm tree silhouette centered in a full moon (or sun?). White “La Jolla” wording stretches across the chest, with “Half Marathon & Shores 5K” in smaller white text below. Two tall, black/purple palm silhouettes rise in the bottom-right half of the shirt, while the bottom-left half featured logos for Fleet Feet, La Jolla Half Marathon, and HydraPak. The Kiwannis Club logo sits on the left sleeve. The back of the shirt is arguably even better! “La Jolla Finisher” in white text is centered at the top of the shirt, with five black/lavender/white palm tree silhouettes in the center-left. The entire right side, and swooping into the bottom-left, looks like a nighttime map of Del Mar/Torrey Pines/La Jolla in black, with all the city streets in lavender. What a fantastic way to highlight the entire race course area!
    The finisher medal this year was an old-school vertical surfboard striped in brown/yellow, and flanked by two palm trees on each side. White silhouettes of two runners go across the bottom half, along with shadows of a coastal plant. “Kiwanis Club of La Jolla” sits in tiny blue text at the top, “La Jolla” in large blue font near the top, “Half Marathon / La Jolla Shores 5k” in tiny white text right below, and “2024” in tiny blue text at the very bottom of the surf board. The entire medal is looped in a blue ribbon, with black palm tree silhouettes, and “2024 Finisher” and “La Jolla Half Marathon” in white text across the ribbon.

    Bottom-line:

    -The La Jolla Half Marathon is a tough but beautiful race. It’s well-run, well-produced, and I look forward to running those hills every year!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    4

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    bwdarrington FIRST-TIMER '24

    The race was well put together. The views and course are incredible and hard to beat. 10 aid stations! The hills are very very tough, so plan for that, but … MORE

    The race was well put together. The views and course are incredible and hard to beat. 10 aid stations! The hills are very very tough, so plan for that, but definitely a race I would recommend.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    danyelaalz FIRST-TIMER '24

    The view was amazing! The hills are no joke! Definitely train for the hills and everything else will be easy sailing! Planning on doing it again next summer! MORE

    The view was amazing! The hills are no joke! Definitely train for the hills and everything else will be easy sailing! Planning on doing it again next summer!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5

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    FusedLJHalf5K FIRST-TIMER '23

    Tons of water stations which makes it easy to be an efficient runner since you don't have to worry about carrying your hydration. It is on a Saturday which is … MORE

    Tons of water stations which makes it easy to be an efficient runner since you don’t have to worry about carrying your hydration. It is on a Saturday which is another plus, and the finish line festival is everything! On the water, overlooking the most beautiful parts of the La Jolla, San Diego coastline.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    My Report
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5

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    BeckyElliott FIRST-TIMER '23

    The long climb into Torrey Pines is rather challenging - forcing even the most die-hard runners to walk at some point, but the overall race experience is fantastic! The run … MORE

    The long climb into Torrey Pines is rather challenging – forcing even the most die-hard runners to walk at some point, but the overall race experience is fantastic! The run along the coast provides amazing ocean views. Be careful on the downhill sections… the sand-covered pavement can be tricky.
    In 2023, we were greeted at the finish line by Meb Keflezighi!! I was so delighted to be finished with the race and to see him that I gave him a giant hug!! Thanks Meb!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    MilesOStridin REPEAT RUNNER '23

    Do you like hills (and gorgeous views)? You’ll love the La Jolla Half Marathon! Expo / pick-up: -The runner’s expo and packet pickup was held at Ellen Browning Scripps park … MORE

    Do you like hills (and gorgeous views)? You’ll love the La Jolla Half Marathon!

    Expo / pick-up:

    -The runner’s expo and packet pickup was held at Ellen Browning Scripps park in La Jolla. It’s a nice, breezy, coastal setting that also serves as the finish line staging area. There were plenty of sponsors and vendors if you’re looking for last-minute running gear. Shirt pickup was interesting because you could opt for this year’s design, or choose an older design that was available in limited sizes. Parking in La Jolla is always tricky, but it helps to check out La Jolla tourism sites like https://lajollabythesea.com/visitor-information-2/ to look up parking locations. This year’s race featured US Olympian and NY/Boston Marathon champ Meb Keflezighi, who made a special appearance at the expo. Very cool.

    Parking:

    -The La Jolla Half is a point-to-point course, so you can either park at the Del Mar Fairgrounds start line (and take a post-race shuttle back), or park at the La Jolla beach finish line (and take a pre-race shuttle to the start). I went with the early-morning shuttles, which began running at 4:30 and ran until 5:15 am, from Ellen Browning Scripps park to the Del Mar Fairgrounds. The shuttle trip was smooth, and took about 25 minutes.

    Pre-race:

    -Del Mar Fairgrounds parking lot served as the start line staging area. Amenities were pretty nice, as there were water stations, plenty of port-a-potties, gear check, and a food truck selling coffee and various breakfast items. If you use the gear check, remember to bring your official gear check bag issued to you at the expo, as the bag contains your bib number. The start corral was pretty basic, divided by pacers holding up estimated finish times and mile times.

    Course:
    -The Half Marathon course starts by tracing the southern, eastern, and northern boundaries of the Fairgrounds, before heading south on Camino Del Mar, right past the Del Mar Dog Beach, and through some residential areas. Right before Mile 3, around Powerhouse Beach, some hills kick in. But those are just an appetizer, the real juicy stuff is coming up soon. A downhill dive at Mile 4 is followed by a flat cruise across Torrey Pines Road Bridge, with some really pretty views of Torrey Pines State Beach on your right. Just before Mile 5.5, you begin the daunting climb up into Torrey Pines State Park. There’s more than 400 feet of elevation gain in the next mile and a half, and it will really test your legs and lungs! Even when you reach the absolute top, you’ll still face some gentle hills as you navigate past the park, Scripps hospitals, and UCSD. Mile 10 brings the longest descent. You swap shaded hills for some flat, coastal views closer to sea level in La Jolla Shores. It’s a lovely stretch accompanied by salty sea breeze and the squawks of sea gulls. Before you can get too comfortable, at Mile 12, one last hill looms: a 130 foot climb. It’s not even close to the monstrous elevation at Torrey Pines, but its location this close to the end is challenging. Push through, push through, and you’ll taste the sweet downhill ride along Coast Blvd and into the grassy finish line.

    Scenery/Weather/Support:

    -This isn’t the type of big city race with DJs, bands, cheer squads, and large crowds of sign-toting supporters. There are supporters here and there for sure, but it’s a quieter race where the main draws are the tremendous hills and gorgeous coastal views. Hydration support was good. I wish there was a water station immediately at the top of the Torrey Pines State Park climb, but I’m guessing park rules may prevent that. It was a cool, overcast day with little direct sunlight, and temperatures ranged from 58F at the start line to the low 60s by the end.

    Post-race:

    -In addition to a medal, the finish-line goodies included a banana, bottled water, Pocari Sweat for electrolytes, chocolate milk, Nature Valley peanut butter bar, and 4 flavors Jam Bars! The post-race festival featured a band, beer festival, and tents for massage, sponsors and merch sales (don’t forget to pick up your shirt if you did race-day bib pick-up, and to visit gear check if you need). Of all the post-race locations I’ve seen, La Jolla Cove location is hard to beat! Green grass and palm trees overlooking rocky shores, crashing waves, and some seals in the cove too! World-class sightseeing is a fantastic reward after a long race.

    Swag:
    -The race shirts at the La Jolla Half are always eye-catching, and this year was no exception. It’s no simple single-color shirt! From bottom-to-top, you get a watercolor-style depiction of La Jolla’s shores: light blue waters, some light brown rocks, green Torrey Pine trees, peach-colored skies, eventually fading into white above the chest. It’s very soothing. The Half Marathon medal is circular, with sun rays at top, the Kiwanis logo and a Torrey Pine tree and surf board across the middle, golden brown sand at the bottom, looped with a light blue/tan ribbon. It’s a nice design, though the silver-colored outlines around the text and graphics muddle the image a bit.

    Bottom-line:

    -The La Jolla Half Marathon is a wonderful, unique race filled with tough hills and beautiful views. Just wonderful. I would do this race again, with no hesitation!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    peg5678 FIRST-TIMER '22

    Quite a bit of downhill which left me sore for nearly a week! Very well organized from pick-up to busses to bag storage. Beautiful scenery the whole way. MORE

    Quite a bit of downhill which left me sore for nearly a week! Very well organized from pick-up to busses to bag storage. Beautiful scenery the whole way.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5

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    MilesOStridin FIRST-TIMER '21

    The La Jolla Half Marathon can be summed up in one word: hills. And if the hills don’t literally take your breath away, then the gorgeous coastal scenery will. Expo … MORE

    The La Jolla Half Marathon can be summed up in one word: hills. And if the hills don’t literally take your breath away, then the gorgeous coastal scenery will.

    Expo / pick-up:

    -This was my first time racing this course and I opted for race-day bib pick-up, so I can’t comment on the expo experience. On the morning of the race, I was initially worried because our shuttle got to the start line before any of the race organizers had finished setting up. However, once I found the correct tent, I was able to check-in and easily grab my bib and pins. One note: if you do decide on race-day bib pick-up, you won’t receive your race shirt until AFTER the race, so keep that in mind when planning your race attire.

    Parking:

    -As a point-to-point course, you have the option of parking at the Del Mar Fairgrounds start line, or parking at the La Jolla beach finish line and taking the shuttle to the start. I arrived in La Jolla fairly early so street parking wasn’t an issue, then took the shuttle to the start. The shuttles seemed plentiful, and I think they were going out every 15 minutes or so, from 4:30 to 5:30 am. Organizers also checked racers for masks before boarding the shuttle, so that was nice.

    Pre-race:

    -The start line location at the Del Mar Fairgrounds had some nice advantages. The fair’s Christmas light displays were festive, and in addition to the race-provided port-a-potties, there were fairground facilities available. The early 6:45 am start-time meant the pre-race temperature was in the chilly 40s! Luckily, one of the fairground’s large exhibit halls was available to runners, and we were able to gather there to stay warm. For gear check, we were provided plastic bags, with bag colors based on our bib numbers, and identified with our bib numbers written in marker. It’s a bit basic, and I worried that any sort of moisture would smudge away the marker-numbers. But it ultimately worked, so I guess I can’t complain. For the start corral, there were no distinct corral separations, we just had to squeeze through the crowd and eyeball your position based on pacer signs.

    Course:

    -The Half Marathon course kicks off with a winding exit through the fairgrounds, before heading south through Del Mar. The first few miles feature some mini-hills through residential streets that are fairly unremarkable. Right after Mile 4, the fun begins. You race downhill on Torrey Pines Road Bridge with beautiful views of Torrey Pines State Beach on your right. Just before Mile 6, the infamous climb up into Torrey Pines State Park begins, and it’s a doozy. There’s more than 400 feet of elevation gain, and it will really carve up your legs and lungs if you’re not ready. Even when you reach the top, there are still some gentle, shaded hills as you go past the Scripps hospitals and UCSD. After Mile 10, it’s time for the descent. You trade in the shady trees and hills for some coastal views again as you approach the La Jolla boardwalk. It stays pretty flat until a small hill around Mile 13. The logical part of your brain says the hill is nothing compared the gargantuan monster you conquered earlier, though your tired legs will probably disagree because you’re so close to the end! Push past this, and it’s an exciting downhill stretch to the finish line.

    Scenery/Weather/Support:

    -If you’re used to DJs, bands, cheer squads, and large crowds of sign-toting supporters, this isn’t that kind of race. It’s a quieter race with amazing coastal views and hilly terrain that make for one of the most uniquely scenic courses I’ve ever run. Distractingly gorgeous. Hydration support was adequate. I wish there was a water station immediately at the top of the Torrey Pines State Park climb, but I’m guessing park rules may prevent that. It was a very chilly day, with temperatures going from the 40s into the 50s, but clear overall.

    Post-race:

    -In addition to a medal, the finish-line goodies included a banana, water, Rx protein bar, chocolate milk, fruit snacks, Hello Panda cookies, pretzels, and an electrolyte drink that was slightly too sodium-heavy for my taste. The post-race festival featured a band, beer festival, and tents for sponsors and merch sales (don’t forget to pick up your shirt and bag now if you did race-day bib pick-up). More importantly, the La Jolla Cove location is hard to beat. Green grass overlooking rocky shores, crashing waves, and some seals along the cove too! If your race ends where a day of world-class sight-seeing begins, I’d say that’s a great spot.

    Swag:

    -I’m not gonna lie, one of the things that attracted me to this race were the shirt designs from years past that I’ve seen online. This year’s Half Marathon shirt was… well, it’s certainly memorable. I suppose single-color shirts can get boring, but the red/orange/yellow gradient design (With a tree silhouetted in sunset? But it’s a morning race!) is a little more garish than I’d prefer, and not the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Del Mar, Torrey Pines, and La Jolla! The Half Marathon finisher medal is more representative of the San Diego coastal vibes: light blue ribbon, with a yellow surfboard amidst a splashing blue wave, and the local Kiwannis logo.

    Bottom-line:

    -The La Jolla Half Marathon was not anywhere close to a PR course for me, but that was to be expected with so many hills. What did exceed my expectations were the views along the course and at the finish. Just wonderful. I would do this race again, without question.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    pasq77 FIRST-TIMER '21

    Usually held in April but delayed due to Covid. Totally enjoyable road race! They did a great job the race was well organized, every odd mile markers, water/gatorade stations ever … MORE

    Usually held in April but delayed due to Covid. Totally enjoyable road race! They did a great job the race was well organized, every odd mile markers, water/gatorade stations ever 2 miles or so. Ocean and beach views a pretty awesome climb up Torrey Pines and a great finish at La Jolla complete with live band, a beer garden and a DJ. This will not be my last race here!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    alwaysmatthew FIRST-TIMER '19

    This is not an easy course but the beauty more than makes up for it. The crowds were pretty sparse but those that did support were fantastic - a big … MORE

    This is not an easy course but the beauty more than makes up for it. The crowds were pretty sparse but those that did support were fantastic – a big thank you to them! My big complaint is the race pacers – there were two pacers who were going to run 1:40 and I wanted to run with them. From the start I knew they were going to fast (they were running close to 1.30 pace) so I backed off and ran my own race. I came in at 1:35 and the pacers were a good few minutes ahead of me. It is very frustrating that the race advertises pacers and they are simply not are capable of doing their job – for some people this will ruin the event as they rely on the pacers knowing the right pace (the 1.30 pacer came in at 1.29.50 so very well done to him!!). Anyway, it is a stunning race and the set-up at the end is great. It is not a PB race but that makes it all the better as there is no pressure – just run hard and suffer and enjoy! 🙂

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    spifko FIRST-TIMER '19

    It feels like you're running uphill the entire race but you feel a real sense of accomplishment after. It starts at the Del Mar racetrack and ends in La Jolla … MORE

    It feels like you’re running uphill the entire race but you feel a real sense of accomplishment after. It starts at the Del Mar racetrack and ends in La Jolla Cove. So after, you feel like you’ve covered some ground!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    2

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    RunKMacRun REPEAT RUNNER '19

    This is race 2 in the Triple Crown series. Very hilly but beautiful. For $20 you can race day pick up your bib. This is a point to point race … MORE

    This is race 2 in the Triple Crown series. Very hilly but beautiful. For $20 you can race day pick up your bib. This is a point to point race so plan accordingly.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    RunKMacRun FIRST-TIMER '18

    This course is nothing but hills! Be prepared! Early in the race, about mile 5ish, you "run" up Torrey Pines. Great course support and amazing views. This is point to … MORE

    This course is nothing but hills! Be prepared! Early in the race, about mile 5ish, you “run” up Torrey Pines. Great course support and amazing views. This is point to point so plan ahead race morning. For $20 you can pick up your bib race morning. This is the second race in the Triple Crown series. I will be back in 2019 to try and get a better time 🙂

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    mahesh3566 FIRST-TIMER '16

    4.0 star rating 5/18/2016 Since one of our friend was doing the half marathon, while we wanted to wait and cheer her, we decided to do the 5k. This is … MORE

    4.0 star rating 5/18/2016
    Since one of our friend was doing the half marathon, while we wanted to wait and cheer her, we decided to do the 5k. This is one of the well organized event. I participated in OC Marathon/5k, but in OC 5k, you have to pay to park to pick up the bib, and you have to pay again the next day to park when you go to run. (10$ each), which is ridiculous. But La Jolla one is super chill. there is plenty of parking on the day of bib pickup , next to hiltons. the bib pickup itself was super easy. the next day they warned us about the downtown parking situation, so we got there early, and found the place where the buses were taking people to either half marathon startline, or the 5k start line. it was very efficient. the Run itself was nice, with hills. TOns of volunteers. there was only one water stop for 5k, which i was expecting. but with all the hills i wish there were atleast one more. the beer garden had plenty of beers for us. the lines werent that long. even tho about 5000+ people ran this race.

    Only reason i give them 4 star is for the expensive 5k price, there arent any medals for 5k. but oh well, i guess they do the 5k just to keep people entertained, but their focus is half marathon. so if you want to do half do this, if you want to do 5k, check out the carlsbad 5000. the best!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    nthome FIRST-TIMER '16

    La Jolla was my 27th half marathon ... it's been on my "to do" list for awhile now and needed to do it to complete the Triple Crown series.  Truth … MORE

    La Jolla was my 27th half marathon … it’s been on my “to do” list for awhile now and needed to do it to complete the Triple Crown series.  Truth be told, I’ve wanted to run this one regardless of the Triple Crown so … 2016 was the year!

    By now, you’ve probably hear that this race has some hills.   Yep.  It sure does!  

    Miles 1 -4 are fairly uneventful — you run out of the Del Mar racetrack and thru some neighborhoods (nice support) and around mile 5, you’ll emerge on Torrey Pines Rd with a beautiful sweeping view of the shore with a nice flat-to-downhill stretch for a mile or so.

    Use it to your advantage and enjoy the coast cause once you round the bend up into Torrey Pines Park Rd … it’s all up hill from there.  Really.  About 2 miles of nothing but up.  It’s not so much the elevation (0 – 400′ in less than a mile), it’s the grade.  There is also no water /fuel support in the Park so … bring your own!  (luckily, I did)

    I put my head down, pumped my arms and dug deep!  At one point, I looked around about 80% of people were walking.  Personally, I didn’t come to La Jolla to walk these hills so … I didn’t care how slow I was running … I was running up this damn hill!  

    Right when you think the steep is finished, it flattens out a bit … then mile 7 takes you up some more.    Usually what goes up must come down?   Oh, it does.  But you have to wait until MILE 10 to get to experience the relief of this course.

    Mile 10 – 11.5 are blazing fast.   Then, some sadistic turd decides to put another hill at mile 12.5 and while that hill itself isn’t all that tough, at this point in the race, it’s really the last thing you want to see.   The final stretch to the final line is a quick jaunt down Prospect to the finish line!  

    If you want a challenge, run this beast of a half.  I’ve run San Francisco, Rocky Mountain, Mammoth at 9,000′  and they have nothing on La Jolla if you want a challenging course.   I wouldn’t recommend it for a first half, though.  Not if you ever want to run another one!  Or, on second though … if you do this as your first one, they will all seem easier after this. Guarantee it.  

    Very beautiful course, though for sure!

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    anawoj FIRST-TIMER '16

    The La Jolla Half Marathon is probably the most scenic yet most difficult half marathon I've ever done. The course is very hilly... especially the massive 1+ mile uphill section … MORE

    The La Jolla Half Marathon is probably the most scenic yet most difficult half marathon I’ve ever done. The course is very hilly… especially the massive 1+ mile uphill section around mile 5-7 where you gain over 400 feet in elevation… but large stretches of the course have sweeping views of the ocean and cliffs that characterize Del Mar and La Jolla. The Expo at the Del Mar Hilton was much better than I was expecting and lots of vendors were present. The parking lot near the horse track was large enough to accommodate the thousands of runners, but there was about a 1 mile backup on the I-5 northbound of people waiting to get off at the Del Mar exit… so give yourself enough time to reach the start. The weather was perfect (50’s and sunny) for running, and the finish line party was awesome… music, vendors, and free beer for the 21+ year old runners. The ribbon and medal were very nice too. My time was much slower than I was hoping, but the hills were a major factor in that. Overall, I’d definitely do it again, though, and I recommend it to anyone else looking for a memorable half marathon in the San Diego area!

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5

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    NorseSunRun REPEAT RUNNER '15

    This event is my most favorite of all. PROS- Very challenging hill with great views of Torrey Pines, Adequate snacks at finish line, Easy bus ride to start, great bathrooms … MORE

    This event is my most favorite of all.
    PROS- Very challenging hill with great views of Torrey Pines, Adequate snacks at finish line, Easy bus ride to start, great bathrooms located near horse racetrack (start)
    CONS- Huge crowd of runners, Water at stations sometimes comes from containers lined with trash bags (not sure if I’m the only one that can taste the difference) train-with/bring your own water, T-shirts made from synthetic material (yuk).
    Update 2016: This year was construction year but there were only 2 minor changes to the route. As a result runners didn’t get to run on the “boardwalk” of the beach but it was a great run regardless.

    DIFFICULTY
    5
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3

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    ktown68 FIRST-TIMER '15

    The 2nd race in the Triple Crown series has the steepest hills I have raced before. The Torrey Pines hill will kick your butt. The finish line party is awesome. … MORE

    The 2nd race in the Triple Crown series has the steepest hills I have raced before. The Torrey Pines hill will kick your butt. The finish line party is awesome. Gorgeous views at La Jolla Cove and free beer for all racers.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    4

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    splitter FIRST-TIMER '14

    Some tough hills on this course but the run along the ocean makes up for it. That last hill before the finish did me in even though it wasn’t the … MORE

    Some tough hills on this course but the run along the ocean makes up for it. That last hill before the finish did me in even though it wasn’t the worst one, I just wasn’t expecting it. Lots of people and well organized. Part of the Triple Crown series.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    5

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  1. Races
  2. La Jolla Half Marathon & 5K