HFRC 2020

I built a photo album chronicling the year in the Half Full Running Club, and what a year 2020 turned out to be. See link below. You can look at the photos in a slide show, but I couldn’t figure out how to make it into a movie with music. If someone knows how to do it easily, please let me know.

From the promise of spring marathons – five of us were signed up and training for the Paris Marathon in April – to Penny’s next Ultra in May, to Lisa’s entry into Boston – we started the year training hard. Then those races were cancelled, along with all the races that could have been, as we went through the lockdown. Official club runs were postponed through May.

We all experienced the surreal prospect of solo running in an empty town. I ran across the Golden Gate Bridge in late March with no other pedestrians and almost no cars. I had runs in GG Park where I saw no one for 7 miles.

Several of us used the first months of the pandemic to explore new routes in the city, constantly amazed to find new paths and corners of the city previously unexplored by most of us. The Presidio golf course was opened briefly to runners and walkers, and a whole new vista opened up. We explored new coastal trails like Bridge to Battery, with access to previously unexplored Marshall’s Beach, which is right under the Bridge.

We resumed running as a club in June, now with masks and social distancing protocol. We explored some of the new paths we had found with the group, including Mt. Davidson and new routes through the Presidio.

In the fall, we tackled the new Crosstown Trail, 17.5 miles of sometimes spectacular pathways, like the Visitation Valley Greenway, and McLaren Park, and Glen Canyon, as well as a baffling omission of pretty much any SF landmark on what is supposed to be a landmark trail. To address this shortcoming, Patrick devised the Criss Crosstown Trail, covering the city in the opposite diagonal to the Crosstown, running from North Beach to Fort Funston. We hit almost every landmark on this excursion, as well as seemingly every hill. All of the three legs were spectacular, and we were blessed by awesome weather all fall.

To follow up, Patrick designed a course with every staircase imaginable though the heart of the city, up Buena Vista to Corona Heights, Twin Peaks, Glen Canyon and Upper Market. Then on to conquer Potrero Hill today, more on that in a separate post. After setting the weekly course for the HFRC and before that the SF Marathon Training Club for more than a decade, I am thrilled to have Patrick take the reins in designing courses. We have seen more new parts to our city this year than ever before.

The club has been a much needed outlet for many of us, and our weekly gathering is often the only time I get to see people in person all week. After the runs, it’s remarkable how relaxed we all are, as none of us really have any place to go. I thank each and every one of you for your friendship and camaraderie, and for supporting the club. At $50 a year we are the best deal in town.


Jay Kloepfer
Half Full Running Club