Bay to Breakers 2008 – The Truth About Hayes Street Hill

Here’s what they want you to believe: the route of the Bay to Breakers footrace is all downhill after topping the Hayes Street Hill. From the website:

ING Bay to Breakers is a 12K (7.46 miles) course. From sea level at the Embarcadero the course rises steeply along Hayes Street Hill. Around the 2.5-mile mark runners climb an 11.15% grade between Fillmore and Steiner, bringing them to the highest point in the race, approximately 215 feet above sea level. The remainder of the course gradually flows downhill alongside the Panhandle and through Golden Gate Park.

But that’s simply not true. Take a look at this elevation profile. See? After dipping down a bit the course continues to rise and reaches its highest point in Golden Gate Park. So there’s a reason why it feels you’re going uphill after conquering the Hayes Street Hill – you are going uphill.

Thousands of runners are in Golden Gate Park today preparing for tomorrow’s race. Going to the west uphill in the Panhandle:

img_7081a.jpg

Why does the mainstream media repeat a falsehood year after year? Laziness, mostly.

But check for yourself, if you want. Mike did last year and came to this conclusion:

According to the Garmin GPS I was using, the highest point is indeed in GG Park, not the top of Hayes Street Hill.

So plan your racing strategy accordingly.

Have fun tomorrow!

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2 Responses to “Bay to Breakers 2008 – The Truth About Hayes Street Hill”

  1. Sheena says:

    That’s not the link! Here’s a link to the elevation profile:

    http://mishalov.net/baybreakers04/

    Man, no wonder that fifth mile seemed so hard.

  2. sfcitizen says:

    Good point. Fixed. Thx.