Remember how effed-up Muni was at last year's Bay to Breakers, with no signs and riders vomiting and drivers getting lost and nobody having any idea how to get anywhere? Yeah, it's probably going to be rough this year, too. (The race is on Sunday, the 20th.) We've got some reasons to be scared, very scared, but also some tips for avoiding the worst of it.
Muni promises to be doing their best to keep things flowing smoothly, but we're skeptical. If you see any Muni signage, take pix and tag them with SFist on Flickr to we can find them -- we're head-over-heels for infrastructure stuff like that.
Warning sign #1: The B2B website advises that you call 511 for transit info. DO NOT USE 511. We cannot emphasize that enough. In all circumstances, it is a waste of time. You will not find the information you need. Use SF's 311 instead -- that's 415-701-2311 (voice) or 415-701-2323 (TTY). They'll be insanely busy on Sunday, so call a day or two in advance.
Warning sign #2: No maps of shuttles and service changes. There's going to be, in Muni's words, "major reroutes and delays," but they're not offering any maps of where those re-routes and delays are happening, or for their special shuttles. This doesn't just affect internet geeks; it extends to real life, as Muni will not be posting any maps along the parade route. All of the people who get to the end of the line will have almost no access to information about the changed routes; they'll have to to guess their way home. But lucky for you, we put together a map of where Muni's post-race shuttle bus will be letting people on and off -- hop aboard! Oh, but you'll need a special ticket.
Warning sign #3: You can get tickets for express service, but there's so many restrictions you may not be able to get one; and if you do, it might be useless to you. They're $3 if you've got a Muni pass, $5 for kids and seniors, and $7 for everyone else. You can only buy them under very specific circumstances: during a three-hour 5am to 8am window at West Portal, Castro Street, Church Street, and Van Ness stations, or at the Polo Field in Golden Gate Park. Or you can get a ticket by paying the special fare on any Muni vehicle. Tokens and transfers will not be accepted. They're only good until 5pm, and don't work on cable cars. SFist is offering a bounty* if you can find and photograph any Muni signs that provide this information.
Warning sign #4: There'll be special shuttles in the very early morning, but only in one direction, and some of them won't make any stops outside of the Richmond and Sunset: from 5:45am to 8am, the 5, N-OWL, and N-JUDAH will be running limited-stop service from the end of the parade route to the beginning. The 5 Express won't pick up riders east of Fulton/Masonic; the N-Owl Express won't pick up riders east of Carl/Cole; and the N-Judah Express won't pick up riders east of Van Ness. (Again, we're offering a reward* for anyone who can locate signs that explain all this.) They will not be running this service at any time later in the day, so you can't use it to get home from the end of the race. You won't be able to board this special shuttle unless you have your special ticket.After the jump: How you can avoid misery and heartbreak on race day.