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California > Heartbreak Ridge Half Marathon, 10K, 5K & 1K
Camp Pendleton, CA  •  Saturday, April 12, 2014  •  Course Map

Camp Pendleton's Heartbreak Ridge Half Marathon is one of those California half marathon events that has attracted growing numbers of runners each year, and for good reason -- with roughly 90 percent of the course run on off-road trails through the hilly mountain wilderness of the Camp Pendleton Marine Corps base, it offers a challenging race with scenery that's totally different from other races in and around the San Diego area, which it's located near.

The 13.1-mile race -- the longer of the two races in this event, though it is part of the Hard Corps Series of running and biking events that take place throughout the year at Camp Pendleton, including the Buffalo Alley 10K Run and the "World-Famous Mud Run" -- starts and finishes at the base's 43 Area Las Pulgas, just off Interstate 5 in the northwestern part of the base.

Though it's not a trail running race per se, the out-and-back course is mostly off-road, taking runners along the packed gravel fire roads that meander through the hills and valleys of the base, with a few flat stretches mixed in along the way.

There are some steep elevation changes along the course, which climbs a total of 1,280 feet over the course of the race, particularly between the second and fourth mile markers. Thankfully, those same uphills become downhills on the trek back toward the finish line in the second half of the race, which is all downhill for the last couple of miles.

Runners who've participated in this race in recent years add that there are really no spectators out along the course, though the Marines who are manning the aid stations more than make up for it, enthusiastically encouraging runners along.

Scheduled starting time for the half marathon is 8:30 AM at the Las Pulgas area on the base, and runners are limited to a three-hour time limit to complete the event. Water and aid stations are distributed about every mile along the course, and will have both water and electrolyte replacement fluids as well as medical aid stations.

Race Weather & Climate

Located along the Pacific coastline of Southern California, about 75 miles from Los Angeles to the northwest, Camp Pendleton Marine Base tends to see relatively even temperatures throughout the year, with somewhat warmer and drier weather in the summer.

April Avg. Day of Race Monthly Precip.
Low: 48°F Low: 47°F Rain: 0.81 in.
High: 71°F High: 71°F Snow: N/A

Course Map

See the race route map for the Heartbreak Ridge Half Marathon

Starting Time

8:05 AM - kids 1K
8:30 AM - half marathon
8:45 AM - 10K
9:00 AM - 5K


$60 for the half marathon, if registered by March 15, 2014
$75 between March 16 - April 10
$85 on the day of the race

Discounts for active-duty military, see race website for details


To reserve your spot in the early spring 2014 running of Camp Pendleton's Heartbreak Ridge Half Marathon or 1K race for kids, visit the event website.

Official Race Website


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Ever run in California's annual Heartbreak Ridge Half Marathon? Share your impressions and read fellow runners' stories and tips for the event.

SEE ALSO: 12-, 16- and 20-Week Half Marathon Training Plans
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