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Marathon

Surf City Marathon Course Overview
This spectacular oceanfront course is an exclusive Southern California favorite! Run by the famous Huntington Beach pier and continue through scenic Huntington Central Park. You’re bound to see local surfers catching waves as you hit the beachfront running path at Bolsa Chica State Beach.

More than 2,000 volunteers and several surf bands will be along the way cheering you on and making sure you have plenty of nourishment and energy! Where else will you get cheers from a surfer?

Date: Saturday, September 11, 2021

Marathon Start Time: 6:30 AM (tentative)

Start/Finish Line: intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Huntington St

Time Limit: 6 hours

Included with your Marathon Registration:

  • Participant shirt
  • Finisher’s Medal
  • Race bib and timing chip
  • Complimentary beer after the race (for finishers 21+ years old)

Description: Marathon by the Mile

Miles 1–2: Huntington Beach Pier & Main Street
Start on Pacific Coast Highway between the ocean and the Hilton Waterfront Beach Hotel. Running north, the Huntington Beach Pier and Main Street are less than a mile away. Look to the left to enjoy the famous Huntington Beach Pier. The next time you see it, you will be on the beachfront running path at mile 25!

Miles 2–9: Huntington Central Park
Just past the second-mile marker, at the first retro surf band station, turn inland on Seapoint and head for Huntington Central Park. On this stretch, you will encounter the course’s only incline, between miles 3 and 4. But take heart; there are hundreds of kids at the park, waiting to cheer you on! They love marathon runners and get up early every year to come to the park, hand out water and yell words of encouragement! These will be your biggest fans! Feeding off energy from the kids in the park, head down Seapoint back toward the ocean. Enjoy the ocean view all the way down to PCH.

Miles 9–15: Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve
Just past mile nine, take a right on PCH and absorb the energy from the ocean! Breathe in the fresh sea air as you continue north on the highway. The Bolsa Chica Reserve wetlands roll out to the right. This 300-acre ecological wonder is a sanctuary for wildlife and migratory birds. Bolsa Chica, along with the rest of Huntington Beach, CA, has some of the nation’s best birding! Nearly half of the birds found in the U.S. have been seen in Huntington Beach. Sightings of great blue herons, snowy egrets and brown pelicans are common; lucky bird watchers can even spot a rare white pelican at the right time of the year.

Miles 16–25: Beachfront Running Path
Starting on mile sixteen, the course leaves Pacific Coast Highway and continues on a beachfront running path paved right over the sand! These are the same beaches where the legends of surf movies and music were made. Observe local surfers in their natural habitat with the waves crashing just yards away. Run all the way back to the pier, where a crowd of spectators will be cheering from above!

The Last Mile: A Spectacular Finish
After turning at the pier, work your way up through the lifeguard station back to Pacific Coast Highway. As you come on to the highway, you will be less than a mile from the finish line. It’s a straight shot from there, and the finish line banner is just ahead. Spectators line the highway to cheer you to the finish line!

Things to Know
About eight miles of the marathon course runs on the multi-purpose beachfront running path that winds through the legendary surfing beaches of Southern California. This public path is not part of the closed course and you may encounter walkers, bicyclists, and others who are not participating in the race. It is only 8 feet wide for a few stretches.

Download Course Map

Half Marathon

Surf City Half Marathon – California’s Classic Oceanfront Course
This award-winning half marathon course is one of the best in the country. Our most popular track, is well known for being scenic and flat. Participants come from all over the globe to experience this exhilarating run. Start along Pacific Coast Highway and pass by the famous Huntington Beach Pier while more than 2,000 volunteers and several surf bands cheer you on. Enjoy the beauty of the Bolsa Chica Wetlands as you start your turn. Kick it up a notch for the crowds as you zoom past at Main Street on your way to a monumental finish line moment!

Date: Saturday, September 11, 2021

Half Marathon Start Time: 7:45 AM (tentative)

Start/Finish Line: intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Huntington St

Time Limit: 4.5 hours

Included with your Half Marathon Registration:

  • Participant shirt
  • Finisher’s Medal
  • Race bib and timing chip
  • Complimentary beer after the race (for finishers 21+ years old)

Description: Half Marathon by the Mile

Miles 1–2: Huntington Beach Pier & Main Street
Start on Pacific Coast Highway between the ocean and the Hilton Waterfront Beach Hotel. Running north, the Huntington Beach Pier and Main Street are less than a mile away. At the 5K start banner, look to the left to enjoy the famous Huntington Beach Pier. Downtown Main Street is where you will likely head after your race to watch the Super Bowl in one of the many idyllic beach bars.

Miles 2–5: Seapoint View
Just past the second-mile marker, at the first retro surf band station, turn inland on Seapoint and head toward Huntington Central Park. On this stretch, you will encounter the course’s only incline, between miles 3 and 4. Take your turn at the bluff, reenergize at the aid station and head down Seapoint back toward the ocean. Enjoy the ocean view all the way down to PCH.

Miles 5-7: Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve
Just past mile five, take a right on PCH and absorb the energy from the ocean! Breathe in the fresh sea air as you continue north on the highway. The Bolsa Chica Reserve wetlands roll out to the right. This 300 acre ecological wonder is a sanctuary for wildlife and migratory birds. Bolsa Chica, along with the rest of Huntington Beach, CA, has some of the nation’s best birding! Nearly half of the birds found in the U.S. have been seen in Huntington Beach. Sightings of great blue herons, snowy egrets and brown pelicans are common; lucky bird watchers can even spot a rare white pelican at the right time of the year.

Miles 8-13.1: The Home Stretch
Just before mile eight at Warner, turn back south on Pacific Coast Highway. The blue waters of the Pacific Ocean stretch out to your right and you are getting your second wind. Feel the fresh ocean breeze and take in the spectacular view. It’s flat, it’s fast, and it’s all yours for the next five miles! Before you know it you are back at the pier, less than a half mile from the finish line. It’s a straight shot from there, and the finish line banner is just ahead. Spectators line the highway to cheer you to the finish!

Download Course Map

10K

New distance for 2021 only! Run PCH past Main Street and the Huntington Beach Pier before making the turn at Goldenwest and back toward the finish line!

Date: Saturday, September 11, 221

10K Start Time: TBD AM

Start/Finish Line: intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Huntington St

Time Limit: 3 hours

Included with your 10K Registration:

  • Participant tank top
  • Finisher’s Medal
  • Race bib and timing chip
  • Complimentary beer after the race (for finishers 21+ years old)

Important: the 10K Distance does NOT apply towards the Longboard Legacy program or Beach Cities Challenge. 

Download Course Map

5K

Surf City is more than a race along Pacific Coast Highway! It is an annual celebration for our community and we want to make sure EVERYONE can be a part of it. Run PCH past Main Street and the Huntington Beach Pier before making the turn at Goldenwest and back toward the finish line!

Date: Saturday, September 11, 2021

5K Start Time: 7:00 AM (tentative)

Start/Finish Line: intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Huntington St

Time Limit: 2 hours

Included with your 5K Registration:

  • Participant tank top
  • Finisher’s Medal
  • Race bib and timing chip
  • Complimentary beer after the race (for finishers 21+ years old)

Important: the 5K Distance does NOT apply towards the Longboard Legacy program or the Beach Cities Challenge.

Download Course Map

Compete with your friends, family, and fellow runners in a 1-mile timed run on the award-winning sands of Huntington Beach!

Date: Friday, September 10, 2021

Beach Mile Start Time: Evening

Start/Finish Line: on the sand near the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Huntington St

Time Limit: 2 hours

Included with your Beach Mile Registration:

  • Participant cape
  • Finisher’s Medal
  • Race bib and timing chip
  • Complimentary beer after the race (for finishers 21+ years old)

Important: the Beach Mile does NOT apply towards the Longboard Legacy program, Beach Cities Challenge, or the Golden State Challenge. 

Participants who complete the Cowabunga Beach Mile on Friday and any race on Saturday (Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K, or 5K) will receive a special Cowabunga Challenge medal!

Virtual Run

Virtual Race Information

Can’t join us in-person on September 11, 2021? Check out the Virtual Run option.

Included within Virtual Half Marathon and Virtual Marathon registrations:

  • Official Event Bib
  • Official Finisher Shirt
  • Official Finisher Medal

When you sign up for the Virtual Race option, you will need to complete the virtual 13.1-mile race (Half Marathon) or 26.2-mile race (Full marathon) and submit proof through the Virtual Run Submission Link between September 1, 2021, and September 14, 2021.

Race Proof can be:

  • Photo proof of your tracking device showing the date and distance
  • Link to Garmin, MapMyRun, Nikeplus, RunKeeper, Runtastic or Strava tracking

Submit your Virtual Run Proof:

  • Virtual Submission Form. Virtual participants must submit proof by September 14, 2021 to receive the finisher packet.
Already signed up but can’t join us on September 11, 2021?

Switch to the Virtual Race! Runners who signed up for the traditional course race can switch to the virtual before September 9, 2021. You can make the switch through your ACTIVE MyEvents account. Please follow these steps:

  1. Please go to MyEvents.ACTIVE.com/motivsportsus
  2. Scroll down to find the 2021 Surf City Marathon and Half Marathon
  3. Click “Change Category” Button
  4. You’re all set!

Virtual Race Rules:

  • Your finish time will not be posted on the Results Page.
  • All virtual runs must be completed and submitted by September 14, 2021.
  • Bib, Shirts, and Medals will be mailed to the address listed on the registration form. Items will be shipped no later than September 3-, 2021. Please allow 4 weeks after race day to receive your finisher packet.
  • We will mail out outside of the United States for an additional fee. Please email us at runsurfcity@motivsports.com for more details.
  • The Virtual run option will allow you to maintain your loyalty status or maintain your status within the Beach Cities Challenge.
  • Virtual Race Entry fees are non-refundable and non-transferable. No exceptions.
  • Virtual Race registration is required in order to participate in the program.

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