Saturday, September 21, 2019 • El Sobrante, CA • Course Map
Set among the hills of the San Pablo Reservoir Recreation Area, just south of San Pablo Bay and a short drive from the nearby cities of Berkeley and Richmond, lies the Old San Pablo Dam Road along the western shore of the San Pablo Reservoir, which runners will make their way around at the Fall Showdown Trail Half Marathon, 5-mile & 5K.
A race that usually attracts a small field of participants, the Fall Showdown Trail event features an out-and-back course that starts and finishes near the northwest corner of the reservoir, and takes runners all the way around to the trails that run alongside the southern end of Briones Reservoir and back again.
From the starting line near the reservoir’s shoreline, on Old San Pablo Dam Road, runners then head southeast along Old San Pablo Dam Road as it winds along the shoreline, and unfolds along mostly flat terrain for nearly the first five miles of the race, which is a combination of paved and natural surfaces.
That changes when runners hit the middle portion of the race, as they make the turn off the road and onto the Oursan and Bear Creek Trails, which lead north toward the Briones Reservoir.
Between mile markers 4 and 5, runners hit a steep, challenging uphill stretch that climbs some 500 feet along Oursan Trail. This stretch also shows off the beautiful scenery that can be seen from the highest point of the race, including the San Pablo and Sobrante ridges as well as the valley below.
Runners make two turnarounds along the southern end of Briones Reservoir along Oursan Trail before turning back onto Bear Creek Trail and then making the return route back to the race finish line, retracing their steps along the route they ran earlier in the race.
The return brings them back through the meadows and trails between Briones and San Pablo (including a stretch along Bear Creek Road) and then brings them back to the Old San Pablo Dam Road for the final few miles along the reservoir shore to the finish line.
Race Weather & Climate
Located in Northern California’s San Francisco Bay Area, about 15 miles north of downtown Oakland, El Sobrante typically sees mild to moderately cool and usually dry weather in September, which has brought record temperatures here as low as 46ºF (in 1983) and as high as 107ºF (in 1971).
On race day (Sept. 21), the average low is 56ºF and the average high is 74ºF.
- 2018 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2017 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2016 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2015 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2014 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2013 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2012 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 2011 Fall Showdown Half Marathon Results
- 7:30 AM – half marathon
- 8:00 AM – 5-mile, 5K
see race website
To reserve your spot in the 2019 running of El Sobrante’s Fall Showdown Trail Half Marathon, 5-mile or 5K race, register online at Active.com here.
Official Race Website
Ever run in the Fall Showdown Half Marathon? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.