With the inaugural running of the Rock-n-Roll St. Louis Marathon and half-marathon just behind us on Sunday, you may be feeling inspired to get out there and log a few miles. If you are looking for some great places to run (or walk or hike or bike), here are a few ideas…
Babler State Park-Its hilly and a lot of work, but worth it. The main road around the park makes for a challenging and exciting 4 mile loop. Be sure to keep an eye open for a large selection of birds, including wild turkeys, turkey vultures and owls. You’ve also got a good chance to run with the deer.
Rockwood Reservation-If you park at the lot just east of 102, there is an underpass that takes you into the reservation. It’s mostly flat, with a slight incline as you head to the back where a steep hill awaits at the end. Of course, if you go to the top, you get to use it to your advantage coming back down. An out and back will give you about 7 miles. You can also get off the beaten path and try the trails; you’ll know you were the first one there if you get a mouthful of spider web.
The Levee Trail in Chesterfield valley-It’s paved and flat, but it’s very entertaining. You can park in a variety of places, including the Hardees arena or the Chesterfield ball fields. You can take the path right under the bridge over the Missouri River; about a mile west of the bridge is a small, enclosed cemetery from the late 1800’s. Lots of wildlife to see and amazing sunrises!
Queeny Park-Challenging trail run if you start at the Dog Museum. Wear your trail shoes and be prepared for loose gravel, but enjoy being surrounded by the changing leaves of Autumn. Also, if you start out going north, get ready for a really tough climb at the end of a 4 mile loop.
Greensfelder Park-It’s out there, WAY out there, by Great America, but worth the trek! The loop around is pretty short, only about 3 miles, but there are some of the toughest hills around. Get off the main road and you’ll find plenty of tough trails to enjoy. Watch out for fallen trees and roots!
Creve Coeur Lake-Its flat, but offers some paved path, some trail, on the lake, in the woods, a little of everything. There are a couple of options around, a little less than 4 or 6 miles, depending on which path you take. On a nice day, you might get to watch a sailboat or a crew on the water.
If you are ready to take the road less traveled, go where the leaves are changing and wildlife abounds. Any of these parks will welcome and reward you with the colors of fall!