Frequently Asked Questions

Are PCTR courses too challenging for first-time trail runners?
What is your refund policy?
Can I have my shirt mailed?
When is the entrant list activated on the event page?
When are run-day instructions sent to entrants?
Can I change distances?
Will I get lost?
How can I find out if an event might sell out?
Can I run as a bandit?
Trail Etiquette?
May I wear headphones?
Are dogs allowed?
Are baby joggers allowed?
How do I contact PCTR?
Are outside vendors/parties welcome at PCTR events?
Are PCTR events fundraisers for charities?
Why is the Elevation Gain different on the Elevation Profile chart?

Are PCTR courses too challenging for first-time trail runners?
Although our courses are hilly and challenging, PCTR events are designed for the first-time trail runner. One of the great things about trail running is that you can hike the uphills and run the downhills. You don't need to be an experienced trail runner to enjoy our events. Just remember to bring a water bottle.

What is your refund policy?
There are no refunds for Pacific Coast Trail Runs events. However, we will offer you a 100% race credit towards a future event if notified 45 days before the event. Also, we will offer you a 50% race credit towards a future event provided you let us know 15 days prior to your event. All requests after the 15-day point will not earn credit. All race credits earned will be good for one calendar year from the time it was earned.

Can I have my shirt mailed?
Shirts are handed out at the event. Leftover shirts, if any, are given to event helpers.

When is the entrant list activated on the event page?
Generally, more than 50% of the runners sign up within the last 2 weeks. We typically post the list for the first time about 10 days out and update it several times as the majority of entries come in. With events like Headlands Hundred and the SF One Day, we list the entrants well in advance as they come in.

Can I change distances?
You can change your distance anytime before the event. Your bib number indicates the distance that you're running, so you must let us know what distance you’re running by runner check-in, at the latest. Please Contact Us if you'd like to change distances.

When are run-day instructions e-mailed to entrants?
We e-mail the run-day instructions the week of the event. If you haven't received the e-mail by 2 days before, please Contact Us.

Will I get lost?
We mark the course extremely well with bright ribbons. Very few runners get off course and, if they do, they realize fairly quickly that they missed an intersection. If you get off course, you should retrace your path until you find where you left the course and then continue along the marked course. Watch for our signature striped ribbons placed before an intersection indicating a turn to the same side. Review the course map, carry the course description, and read the run-day instructions. Don't follow other runners blindly.

How can I find out if an event might sell out?
On each race, UltraSignup.com posts the number of remaining entries as the event gets close to selling out.

Can I run as a bandit?
Running as a bandit (not registering) in organized events is inappropriate even though you don’t consume drinks or food. The organizers expend a tremendous amount of time and money for permits, park monitors, measuring and marking the course, insurance, and publicizing the event. Registered runners would not be able to enjoy the group experience if these efforts and costs were not made by the event organizers.

Trail Etiquette?
Please be courteous on the trail. If you're passing another runner or hiker, announce "on your left" as you approach.

May I wear headphones?
Headphones are allowed on bike pathways but we recommend having in your right ear only as other runners, bikes, or pathway users may pass on your left and you want to hear them coming. The same goes for fire trail dirt sections only. We recommend not wearing headphones on single-track dirt trails, while crossing paved roads, arriving at aid stations, or while crossing the finish line.

Are dogs allowed?
No dogs allowed on our dirt trail courses. Some of our bike pathway events allow dogs and we will to if you can keep them to a 6 foot leash limit. Please don't leave pets in your vehicle or we will kindly have the rangers find it a temporary home until you finish your event.

Are baby joggers allowed?
All of our dirt courses include sections of narrow trail and baby joggers aren’t allowed. However, please feel free to use them on our bike pathway courses without headphones.

How do I contact PCTR?
E-mail us at runpctr@gmail.com for a quick response.

Are outside vendors/parties welcome at PCTR events?
It depends on the event. Some will be there and some will not.

Are PCTR events fundraisers for charities?
PCTR does donate money to charitable organizations. We donate to youth organizations as well as those that serve trails, open space, and public parks. Runners occasionally run to raise money for charities and they're welcome to do that, personally.

Why is the Elevation Gain different on the Elevation Profile chart?
We use an altimeter to measure Elevation Gain when we're wheeling the course. The Elevation Profile chart gives a general visual idea of the major climbs/descents. Please disregard the elevation change info within the Elevation Profile chart generated using Topo! Maps. The elevation gain/loss has significant cumulative errors from manually tracing the course with a mouse using the topo software program.

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