Set along the beaches looking out onto the Pacific Ocean here along the Long Beach Peninsula in southwestern Washington State, an area named one of the nation's best beaches by ForbesTraveler.com and known for its wide, expansive beaches as well as its shopping, restaurants and local museums, the Beach to Chowder Half Marathon, 10K & 5K Run/Walk marks its 34th annual running in the summer of 2011, though the half marathon portion of the event is new, now in its third running.
Runners looking for a real change of pace from urban runs will be hard pressed to find one that's more unlike a big-city half marathon, as the Beach to Chowder race takes participants on a route that's run mostly along the shores of Long Beach. The race begins at the area known as the Long Beach arch, and follows a winding out-and-back race that starts out taking runners northward toward the area's North Trail Head, by the condominiums known as the Breaker's Condos.
Once they make the turnaround at the Breaker's Condos, runners then head back along the route they've just run for another two miles and continue heading southward along the beach, with stretches along the boardwalk that runs through dunes along the oceanfront. Runners then follow the route all the way southward to the second turnaround point near the area known as Beard's Hollow, just north of Cape Disappointment State Park, and then head back up along the beach back to the arch for the finish.
Thanks in large part to its location along the beach, the race is almost all flat and fast, though the terrain includes a combination of paved surfaces, beach boardwalk and sand and dirt trails along the shoreline. Following the finish, all runners are served a complimentary bowl of clam chowder (hence the race's name, "Beach to Chowder").
Weather & Climate
Nestled along the Pacific coastline of the southwestern corner of Washington State, just over 140 miles southwest of Tacoma, the city of Long Beach typically experiences mild to moderately cool weather in the late spring and early summer, and only rarely sees its temperatures rise above the 60s, even in the peak of summer. In June, the city's average monthly temperatures range between 63°F and 49°F, while rainfall totals average just under 3 inches for the month (making June its third-driest month of the year on average).
To reserve your spot in the summer 2011 running of Long Beach's Beach to Chowder Half Marathon, 10K or 5K, register online at the event website.
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