Trail Racing


(For a list of races I have run and wrote about scroll to the bottom of this page)

For Beginners:

  • Zoom Running - Zoom events are designed to be easier, flatter, and faster than their more challenging Coastal Trail Runs series. The courses are always scenic & typically along a combination of asphalt and dirt paths.

More Challenging:

  • Brazen Racing - Not strictly a trail racing company but more of an all terrain racing company. Lots of trails mixed with dirt roads and bike paths. Brazen runs a lot of half marathon, 10k & 5k races. Brazen is known for its Ultra Half Series which is a little longer than 13.1 miles and on some of the most brutal courses in the area.
  • Coastal Trail Runs - These events are located in amazingly beautiful parks and recreation areas along Coastal California and Oregon.  They have well-marked courses, accurately measured distances and immediate race results.
  • Enviro- Sports- This company does a little bit of everything and not all of it is limited to the immediate Bay Area. They have road & trail races, triathalons, & "sharkfest" swims.
  • Pacific Coast Trail Runs - PCTR is back up and running and under new management as of late 2012. They ran very few races in 2013 while they were regrouping and now in 2014 they seem to be back on track and better than ever. At one time this was the top choice in trail running in Northern CA. Perhaps they will regain that title in time?
  • Inside Trail Racing - ITR was born out of the PCTR disintegration of 2011/2012. This outfit put on over 20 races in 2012. Most events are in the North & East Bay but others are in Santa Cruz, Folsom, Auburn and all points in between. Most race destinations offer 10k to Marathon distance. They also run several 50k's and even a few 5k's.
  • Troys California Trail Runs - TCTR holds events all over the Bay Area and California but most of them are within driving distance of San Francisco or San Jose. They have over a dozen races every year and they participate in the Trail Runner Magazine Trophy Series for those of you who are chasing the points.
  • Wolf Pack Events - Holding about 10 events per year this company lists 5 duathlons and 5 running events on their calendar. 3 of the events offer the half marathon distance. All of the other events offer 5k & 10k distances, no marathons or ultras. All of their events are held at the same location in Orinda so you never have to wonder where their race is this weekend.
  • Sasquatch Racing - Co-founders "Marathon" Matt & Charles "Chuck wagon" Lantz are both well known in the running and fitness community around the bay area. Sasquatch racing is a relatively new organization getting started in 2013. According to their website "Sasquatch Racing is committed to providing fun, offbeat, races that will appeal to experienced runners as well as those new to the sport." Sounds good to me! Give these guys a try and let me know what you think.
  • Urban Coyote Racing- This appears to be a new start up in 2015. The website as of late 2014 lists 4 confirmed races in 2015 and 2 more potential races. No other information is known and having never ran with this outfit I would be interested to hear what the public thinks. If you know these folks or have ran with them, drop me a line.
  • Scena Performance- New or at least new to me as of mid 2015. I know nothing of them but will find out and get back to you. 
  • West Coast Trail Runs - New start up in 2012 out of the San Jose area. I know very little about this outfit as my wife has only ran 1 of their events and I have not run any. We were disappointed with that 1 race event and I am continually astounded at how unhelpful their website is. I'll run with these guys in a pinch but if anything else is available that weekend I will probably elect to run that rather then anything West Coast produces.

Special Events & One off trail events:

If you would like to have your trail event listed or would like me to review your event send me an email: Jonathan's email
  • East Bay Triple Crown Trail Championship- This is a 3 race series featuring:
  • Lynch Canyon Trail Run - This race takes place in early summer at the Lynch Canyon Open Space Preserve located just outside of Vallejo. They offer a half marathon, 10k, 5k and a free 2.5 mile walk/hike. I wrote 2 articles about this race in 2013 leading up to the race and its subsequent review. Check out article 1 here, article 2 here and the 2013 review here. I ran this again in 2014. Did I do better? Read about it here.
  • Ruth Anderson Ultras- This is not a trail run but a paved bike path with a dirt shoulder. The loop around Lake Merced in San Francisco is the course in its entirety. It is a 4.475 mile loop and you can choose to participate in the 50k, 50mile or 100k event.
  • Lake Sonoma 50 miler - The race is limited to 300 runners, and has a 14-hour time limit. Registration is in December and the race sells out in a flash. Don't miss it.
  • North Face Endurance Challenge - This is the culminating event of a national series of trail festivals. Starting and ending in Sausalito and set in the rolling hills of the Marin Headlands north of San Francisco, the GORE-TEX 50-Mile Championship is one of the country's most competitive races, with many of the country's top trail runners vying for a piece of the $20,000 prize purse—one of the largest in the sport—with $10,000 each going to the men's and women's winners. But with a 5-K, 10-K, half marathon, marathon relay marathon, 50-K, and 50-mile all on the same seaside trails, there are opportunities for trail runners of all abilities
  • The Dipsea - First run in 1905, the Dipsea is the oldest trail race in America. It is run every year on the second Sunday in June. The scenic 7.4 mile course from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach is considered to be one of the most beautiful courses in the world. The stairs and steep trails make it a grueling and treacherous race.
  • The Double Dipsea- This event usually takes place two weeks after the Dipsea Race and as the name suggests, it is a double crossing of the Dipsea Trail. As of 2014 this race is now on Brazen Racings Calendar!
  • The Quad Dipsea- This event usually takes place at the end of November and as the name suggests, it is 4 passes across the Dipsea Trail
  • The Miwok 100k- Running in early May the 2015 course will be the same trails as the 2014 course, run in reverse. The park services prefer this direction since it lets runners complete the busier trail sections earlier in the day. The runners will love this direction because there is room to spread out before hitting the narrow single-track, and the tougher series of hills will be done by mile 40 or so.
  • Ohlone Wilderness 50k- Trail Runner magazine Trophy Series race run in early May. The Ohlone 50K is a point-to-point race traversing the entire Ohlone Wilderness Trail, a tough 31 mile distance run on trails and fire roads. 

Web Resources:

Races I have run with links to those I have wrote aboutTRAIL/ ROAD/ COMBO

  • SFTRAILS.COM is born!!!- 10/16/12

  • Rocky Ridge-                          Half-      10/20/12- read the review
  • US Half-                                  Half-       11/4/12- read the review
  • Mt Tam Trail Run-                   50k-      11/11/12- read the review
  • Woodside Ramble-                   50k-      12/15/12- DNF- read the review
  • New Years Eve Half-               Half-       12/29/12- read the review
  • Coyote Hills-                            Half-      1/26/13
  • Napa Valley-                    Marathon-      3/3/13- read the review
  • Way Too Cool-                          50k-      3/9/13- read the review
  • Croom Fools Run-                     50k-      4/6/13- read the review
  • Horseshoe Lake-                       Half-      5/19/13- read the review
  • Lynch Canyon-                         Half-      6/1/13- read the review
  • Hillsborough Fun Run-              10k-      6/2/13
  • Crystal Springs Trail Run-        Half-      8/10/13- read the review
  • Berkeley Trail Adventure           35k-      9/28/13- read the review
  • Skyline to the Sea             Marathon-      10/12/13- read the review
  • Quad Dipsea                        28.8 mi-      11/30/13-
  • Fort Ord Trail Run                   Half-      2/1/14- read the review
  • Zombie Runner San Francisco  Half-      2/15/14- read the review
  • King's Mountain                      Half-      3/1/14- read the review
  • Badger Cove                            Half-      3/15/14- read the review
  • Diablo Trails Challenge          Half-       4/19/14- read the review
  • Wildcat Canyon                      Half-       5/10/14- read the review
  • Lynch Canyon Trail Run        Half-       6/7/14- read the review
  • Trail Quake                             Half-       6/14/14- read the review
  • Bad Bass                                 Half-       7/26/14- read the review
  • Bobcat Blitz                             Half-      8/3/14- read the review
  • Trail Hog                                 Half-       9/6/14 read the review
  • Drag-N-Fly                              Half-       9/20/14 read the review
  • Rocky Ridge                            Half-      10/4/14 read the review
  • CIM                                  Marathon-     12/7/14 read the review
  • New Years Eve Half-               Half-       12/27/14 read the review
  • Coyote Hills (2nd in A.G.!!!)     5k-      1/24/15
  • King'sMountain                        Half-     2/28/15
  • Badger Cove                             Half-     3/14/15
  • Rock-N-Roll San Fran              Half-     3/29/15 volunteer pacer
  • Burlingame Spirit Run              5k-     9/7/15 fun run for charity
  • Drag-N-Fly                              Half-       9/19/15
  • Rocky Ridge                            Half-      10/3/15- DNF
  • Mt Tam Trail Run-                   35k-      11/14/15- read the review