Foot Race In California
Marin County is on the other side of the Golden Gate in northern California. On the beach Nathan H. Stinson bought land in 1866. In 1870 a road was built along the Pacific coast from Sausalito, California and a tent settlement was started at the shore called Willow Camp. The Mt. Tamalpais & Muir Woods Railway opened in 1896 bringing more people to Willow Camp. Several Inns opened catering to the tourists including the Dipsea Inn in 1904.
In 1904 two members of San Francisco’s Olympic Club made a bet on who could be swiftest to run from the gateway at the train depot in Mill Valley, California along Mt. Tamalpais trails to the newly opened Dipsea Inn on the Pacific Ocean at Willow Camp. A group of Club members then organized themselves as the Dipsea Indians and staged the first Dipsea Race on a rainy November day in 1905. The 7.5 mile Dipsea Race is the oldest cross-country trail running event—and one of the oldest foot races of any kind—in the US.
On September 13, 1912 the 8th Annual Dipsea Race took place in Marin County. It’s steep climbs and descents makes it a grueling and sometimes treacherous race.