California > Ventura Half Marathon & 5K
Ventura, CA • Sunday, February 12, 2012 • Course Map
Set for its 10th annual running here in the late winter season of 2012 in this Southern California city just outside Los Angeles -- after a 2011 running that saw more than 330 runners cross the finish line in the half marathon alone -- the Ventura Half Marathon & 5K takes runners along the Ventura River Trail, a rails-to-trails project that connects with the Ojai Valley Trail to offer one of the region's more popular urban biking, walking and running trails.
Opened in 1999, the Ventura River Trail unfolds along just over 6 miles of what once was the railbed for the former Southern Pacific Railroad that ran through this part of Southern California. Today, the trail connects with both the Ojai Valley and the nearby Omer Rains Trail to give bikers and runners 17 miles of uninterrupted paths, from Ojai's Fox Street all the way to the Ventura Pier overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Runners in the event's half marathon and 5K races follow an out-and-back course that starts and finishes to the northeast of the city just off the Ojai Freeway, at the park near the intersection of Stanley Avenue and North Ventura Avenue. From there, runners head out on a course that winds around the park's perimeter and then merges with the trail, which runs roughly parallel to the freeway as it winds its way northward.
The course brings runners northward along the trail, passing through Foster Park (twice, as runners pass through it again on the return route) all the way up to the half-way turnaround point, which lies just north of the intersection of North Ventura Avenue and Sulphur Mountain Road. There, runners then turn around and head back along the route they've just run back to the starting line area for the race finish.
Thanks in part to its small size field (just a few hundred runners), the race offer both a friendly, low-key atmosphere as well as a fast course, which unfolds along a very gradual uphill incline from the start to the half-way point, and a very gradul downhill slope during the second half back to the finish line. Bear in mind that if some of the scenery is familiar while you're in town, that's because you've likely seen it before, at least in the movies -- Ventura has served as a filming location for movies as varied as "Little Miss Sunshine," "Chinatown," "The Aviator" and "Erin Brockovich" in recent years.
Weather & Climate
Located along Southern California's Pacific coastline, roughly 65 miles west of downtown Los Angeles, the city of Ventura typically experiences cool (and occasionally cold) to mild weather conditions in the late winter, and usually sees its wettest weather of the year in February, when average monthly temperatures range between 66°F and 47°F and rainfall totals average about 3.9 inches for the month. On the day of the race (Feb. 12), the average high is 66°F and the average low is 47°F.
View the race route map for the Ventura Half Marathon
$50 for the half marathon, if registered by December 31, 2011
$55 between January 1 - 31, 2012
$60 between February 1 - 11
$70 on the day of the race
To reserve your spot in the late winter 2012 running of the Ventura Half Marathon or 5K race, register online at Active.com.
Official Race Website
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