Ever wonder what running the The San Francisco Marathon course is like? Let writer and runner Erin Mara, along with the SFM staff, take you through the experience of running the The San Francisco Marathon mile-by-mile. Get a sneak peak, then get registered and get training!


Mile 23 takes runners through the industrial-chic Dogpatch neighborhood, a historically gritty seaport that has recently evolved into one of San Francisco’s most quickly developed neighborhoods.

This mile of the course travels down Indiana Street, across 22nd Street for a few blocks, then up 3rd Street and Illinois Street heading toward the water.

New state-of-the-art condo construction is everywhere, and factory, warehouse and pre-1906-earthquake Victorian spaces house a concentration of stylish eateries, bars and shops as well as artist studios and galleries. The micro-hood is also headquarters to San Francisco’s invigorated manufacturing movement.

Esprit Park at Indiana on 20th was gifted to the city by Esprit Corporation. Once a corporate garden, it is a small patch of grass with picnic tables and a parcourse circuit, favored by dog owners and their furry companions.

There is no definitive origin of the neighborhood’s name, but a few theories include that it was named after the dogfennel that used to grow in the area, or that there were packs of dogs that used to scavenge discarded meat parts from Butchertown, a slaughterhouse district located nearby.

The Caltrain station at 22nd Street makes Dogpatch popular with commuters who work south of San Francisco.

Local brewery Magnolia Brewing Company expanded its location in the Haight to the Dogpatch, where it makes much-loved, small-batch brews and barbeque at its restaurant, Smokestack, on 3rd and 22nd streets, the epicenter of the neighborhood.

Dogpatch Boulders is a massive, rock climbing gym on 3rd Street between 22nd and 23rd streets that is geared toward bouldering, which doesn’t use ropes or harnesses.

Right next door is the Museum of Craft and Design, a unique, non-collecting institution that showcases innovative and contemporary artwork and is sure to be a design geek’s dream.

There is a water stop in the middle of this mile. The Bay is in sight, signaling the last stretch of the race.