Saturday, January 30, 2016 • Bakersfield, CA • Course Map
Fast and very flat are the words past runners use to describe the Kern River Parkway trail that serves as the course for the twice-annual running of the Bakersfield Track Club’s A Riverbed Runs Through It Half Marathon & 5K, which in past years has been run twice each year here in this city in California’s southern San Joaquin Valley.
A fixture here for more than four decades, the race follows an out-and-back course that starts and finishes at Bakersfield’s Park at River Walk, which lies just off Stockdale Highway. From there, runners head in a northeast direction along the trails through the Kern River Parkway, which stretches 30 miles through the city alongside the river, and is made up of about 6,000 acres of parklands, trails and waterways.
Runners remain on the path that parallels the river all the way up to the turnaround point just past Westside Parkway. Once they make the turn, runners then head back toward the southwest, re-tracing their steps in the opposite direction along the bike path until they make it back up to Yokut’s Park to cross the finish line.
The race usually draws a relatively small field of roughly a few hundred runners each year, and while it was once usually held twice each year, race organizers have held it only in the winter for the past couple of years.
Runners may register on the day of the race, which has a starting time of 8:00 AM — the course closes three hours later, at 11:00 AM.
Race Weather & Climate
Located near the southern end of California’s San Joaquin Valley, roughly 110 miles north of Los Angeles, the city of Bakersfield typically experiences mild to moderately cool and occasionally cold conditions in the late winter season, and usually very dry weather throughout most of the year.
In January, the city’s average monthly temperatures range between 56°F and 39°F, while rainfall totals average just under 1.2 inches for the month.
- 8:00 AM – half marathon (runners)
- 6:30 AM – half marathon (walkers)
To reserve your spot in the 2016 running of the Bakersfield Track Club’s Riverbed Runs Through It Half Marathon or 5K race, register online at UltraSignUp.com here.
Official Race Website
Ever run in the Bakersfield Track Club Half Marathon? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.