Big Sur International Marathon

Big Sur International Marathon

Big Sur International Marathon

( 33 reviews )
96% of reviewers recommend this race
  • Carmel,
    United States
  • April
  • 10 miles, 26.2 miles/Marathon, Relay, Other
  • Road Race
  • Event Website


Los Angeles, California, United States
4 10
"All in"
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Race Management
Kate 's thoughts:

There's a reason Big Sur International Marathon is one of the most beloved races in the country. Running along the cliffs getting a view of the Pacific Ocean is absolutely stunning. BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL. It takes your breath away.

This is how the morning goes:
Wake up at 3am, drive to a bus. Take an hour-ish long bus ride at 4am to the start area. Hang out in the start area for another hour. Try not to freeze your face off (BRING EXTRA GEAR TO STAY WARM IN!!!!!). Happy, uplifting start.

Course: Challenging first half
The first 5 miles or so before you get to the water are VERY WINDY but net downhill. Gusts knocked me over. I drafted off other runners for a little bit, mostly because they blocked wind from my face. The main, MOST DIFFICULT HILL is at mile 10. A lot of people drop off at this point. It's still a little windy here but once you get through this, it's mostly cruisy. Bixby Bridge is MAGICAL. There's a grand piano player on the other side. I will never forget this moment. The rest of the course isn't too hard, a hill here or there, some flatish.

Experience/Atmosphere: Top rate
I had a merry time chatting with the guys I drafted off. I talked with the 3:30 pace group for a while after mid-point before I took off. We joked around a lot, had a merry ole time together. I saw some at the end and we hugged and congratulated each other. BSIM is small enough to do this, which makes it more special to me.

Finish area:
The MEDAL is really awesome and super pretty (see pic). All the perks, none of the stress. Massage tent, snacks, vendors. There were a lot of people around but because it isn't TOO big of a race, there was space to walk. There are a lot of shops in the area that you can go to once you leave the finish also, which was nice. Parking for spectators down that way isn't exactly easy, it isn't a big area, but they should be able to find something - you just have to walk a little bit.

This race is a no-brainer. If you have a chance, do it. Don't even think twice.

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