Top Ten Personal Favorite Routes
Inclusion criteria: Route must have been run on a weekly basis for at least one month
Deer Mountain Out & Back, Estes Park, CO. This was a favorite route while living in Estes Park, that I did throughout both the winter and the summer. I would run up Trail Ridge Road to the Deer Mountain Trailhead and then hop on the trail and ascend to the top and then head back down.
West Oaks Out & Back, Austin, TX. This out back consists of a run down Escarpment Boulevard, a quick jog down Davis Lane, a sudden veer to the left following the West Oak Trail. Then a cross over Beckett Road into Dick Nichols Park, followed by a short trail run up to Convict Hill Road. Then one last push down Woodcreek Road to William Cannon and back.
Tiffin Carnival/Hedges/Coe Road Loop. Tiffin, OH. This is a classic Tiffin run consisting of a run east on 16, followed by a turn north on 17/15. Followed by a westward turn onto Coe Road and an eventual run of the Tiffin Carnival cross country course. After the running of the course, jump back on Coe Road to Spayth Street and then travel over to State Route 100. Take 100 to Township Road 151 and take a final turn west down County Road 16.
Boogie with Stu. Tiffin, OH. These two runs are Tiffin Calvert cross country originals.
- Start from Coach Behm’s house on Ranchwood and turn east onto Old Attica Road until it T bones with Route 224 then turn back (5K)
- Start from Heidelberg Track and run across Main Street down to “Hidden Valley”. Run around the practice fields, through the woods behind the YMCA, which empties in Hedges Boyer Park.
River Road/34/Sandusky River Out & Back, Tiffin, OH. This route is a favorite of mine starting from either Calvert High school or Columbian’s track. The start is somewhat undulating for Tiffin, and the scenic Sandusky River is in view for nearly the entirety of the route. I typically turn around somewhere near the canoe livery.
Golf Course Run, Tiffin, OH. Keep this one on the down-low; A favorite early, early morning run from the house following each hole at Mohawk.
- RMNP Loop (Through Park housing, up High Drive and around Beaver Meadows, into Moraine Park, then across Bear Lake Road. Then behind the visitors center, along Eagle Cliff, back to Park housing). Estes Park, CO. This run follows some winding trails in Upper Beaver Meadows, eventually reaching a wooded section of Ponderosa Pines (where I had my first face-to-face encounter with a black bear), then a steep section of trail skirting along Eagle Cliff Mountain. Finally, the trail passes RMNP’s “bone yard”, and winds up back at park housing.
- Estes Park Downtown Out & Back (South down 36, around lake), Estes Park, CO. This was the first route that I did upon first moving to Estes Park. For much of the winter I would run into downtown Estes Park, and loop around the 3.7 mile trail at Lake Estes a few times and head back to my apartment on Sundance Circle.
- McKinney Falls Loop/Out & Back. Austin TX. I ran this route for my first run upon moving to Austin. It consisted of a jog from Will & G’s house across William Cannon into McKinney Falls State Park. Then I followed the trail along Onion Creek until I reached the interpretive trail that emptied out near the Lower Falls. I jumped from Rock out cropping to rock out cropping over the falls to a network of looped trails around the old homestead and grist mill. For a longer run I would add a loop of the asphalt trail before heading back. Additionally, I would run along McKinney Parkway in the evenings to tack on some more miles.
- Slaughter Creek/1826 Loop/Out & Back. Austin, TX. I have run this out & back loop more than any other in Austin thus far. It consists of a run down Dalgreen Avenue, a turn at La Crosse, followed by a turn onto the Austral Loop, and finally a merge onto the trail by the catch basin. Once on the trail I head under Mopac taking a trail that skirts along Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. I turn back, head under Mopac then take the gravel trail, go under Esparpment into Circle C Metroparks. Then I take a trail along Slaughter Lane to 1826 and continue to follow the trail to the Slaugther Creek Preserve Trail. Finally, I Loop the trail and head back.
- Leadville & Turquoise Lake Out & Back. Leadville, CO. This route is run by a couple thousand people each August. A route that needs no description… Basically I started from Mountain Peaks Motel and ran down 6th street to The Boulevard then up the small power line hill, over to Turquoise Lake, along the lake to May Queen and back.
- Tiffin Town/Country Loop. Tiffin, OH. I have probably run this route or a variation of it more times than any other route listed combined. Basically from County Road 16, I travel up 151/100 (Melmore St) into Tiffin, from there I either ran to Calvert, Columbian, or Molyets, then back down either 231 (Washington St) or 19 (Sycamore St), then back east on 16.
- South into Millstream Run Reservation Bridal Trail.Berea, OH. From the old homestead on East Grand Street, I run past Coe Lake into the metroparks, then past Wallace Lake (800m repeat course) and beyond. The five mile mark is Challet but for longer runs I would travel to Strongsville or North Royalton. This was a classic long run route in Baldwin Wallace cross country days.
- Gem Lake/McGregor Falls Out & Back. Estes Park, CO. Probably my favorite route in Estes Park, this consisted of a run from Park housing across 36 along Riverside Drive, back on 36 in the down town, then a turn onto MacGregor Avenue. Followed by a eastward turn onto Devils Gulch Road. Then to the Lumpy Ridge Trail Head. From here I either did a 1.7 mile trudge up to Gem Lake or a rolling 2.5 miler to McGregor Falls and back. This could also turn into a run out to MacGregor Ranch followed by a run along the Cow Creek Trail. There are plenty of options and a vast trail network in this northeast section of RMNP. Additionally, Lumpy Ridge is full of scenic cascades and impressive rock formations.
- North into Rocky River Reservation Bridal Trail. Berea, OH. During my four year stint at Baldwin Wallace College, this route was my bread and butter. As with many other routes on my list, this was the first route I did upon moving to Berea. From the house on East Grand, I headed down Front Street to Bagley Road. Then I hit the all purpose trail that parallels the road, I jumped off the all purpose trail onto the softer Bridal Trail. From here the Bridal Trail winds along Rocky River, through the scenic reservation. As a bonus sidetrack I used to head up a steep hill about 4 miles into this route and was rewarded with spectacular views of the towering bluffs carved by Rocky River. For most runs, I turned back near the nature center, but for long runs I would take the trail all the way to Lake Erie.
- Eden Township Sandusky River Loop (Start heading east on county road 16, turn south down township road 151, turn west on county road 6, turn south on township road 19, turn west on township road 28, head south on trail 0028, turn west onto township road 131, turn east onto county road 6, turn north onto township road 58, turn north onto township 19, then head east on county road 16). Tiffin, OH. I have lived and ran in many places and have seen some amazing views. However, it is hard to top the memories and emotions evoked by this particular route. This route will always hold a special place in heart. Starting back in the latter high school years I began doing long runs out on the old country roads near my house. I discovered the old St John’s Hollow Concert venue, the tranquility of the Sandusky River, and the only hills in Seneca County. Additionally, I discovered a new Sunday morning tradition with my father. For most every long run that I do in Tiffin dad pulls the old bike out of the shed, pumps up the tires, duct tapes his jeans so they don’t get caught in the chain and we hit the road for an eighteen mile journey through the best roads Eden Township has to offer. This has been a long running tradition that has continued right up until this year and I do not expect it to stop anytime soon. It never ceases to amaze me that dad hops on the bike for the first time in months and easily covers the distance. At any rate, this long run has always been a great time to discuss life, love, stress and setbacks. This route will always epitomize to me, why I find purpose in running and for that matter family and friends.