I'll outline a few pros and cons of each -- and then opinions are always welcome.
Avenue of the Giants:
1. Beautiful. Like spectacularly beautiful not just run of the mill beautiful.
2. Closer (of the two) to home
3. Small!!! (like teeny tiny)
4. Will probably be able to convince several of my running girlfriends to run the half and then spectate until I come crawling in.
1. About a 200ft incline and a bit harder of a course
2. Small?? (I think that is a pro but it could be considered a con)
1. Well, this is supposed to be beautiful too but a different kind of beautiful. more like pretty.
2. Smallish -- not teeny tiny like Avenue but with 8000 participants it is unlikely to freak me out either.
3. Might get one girlfriend to come do the half and spectate me in.
4. More crowd support (maybe? and this is something I don't seem to need so neutral really)
5. The course looks a bit easier:
Well, darn it -- you have to go here to see the elevation.
Basically Eugene has a 150ft climb for 2 miles (from miles 1.5 to 4.5) -- then lots of downhill and a bit uphill from miles 21.5 on. And by bit of an uphill, the elevation shows it to be 25ft so that isn't much at all.
Contrast that with a 200ft elevation gain for 6.5 miles and then a lot of downhills. But if you that map were expanded it would show a bunch of rollers, I think. Hard to say.
1. Farther away --
2. Bigger (which is both pro and con - ha ha ha -- I've used size as both a pro and con in both marathons)
Honestly I think either would be good first marathons -- neither is a super difficult course. Both are fairly easy to get to. Neither is a huge marathon (which would kill me as a first one, I know it). I'm just finding it hard to commit.
Comments? Thoughts? Opinions?