One for each day of the week

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By: Kris Hoey
Head Women’s Cross Country Coach

People often ask me for suggestions on where they should run here in Lexington.  There are so many great places to run,  it is kind of like a runner’s paradise.  You can get everything from hilly trails to flat road runs and everything in between.  Here are a few of my favorite places to run.  A few of the runs have links after the description giving a map and directions for the run.  Check them out!

The Chessie – This is the place I tell people to run most often.  It is beautiful, easy to find, the miles are marked, and it is cool and shady in the summer.  It is an all around awesome trail.  It used to be an old railroad bed and it runs right along the Maury River. It runs 6 miles over to Buena Vista.  Great spot for a long run.  Turn right at the light after you cross the East Lex Bridge heading out of town and the trail is about 400m up on your right.  There is parking available.

Jacobs Ladder – One of the most rewarding runs here in Lex…be prepared to work hard and get spectacular views in return.  It is one of the hilliest places to run here in Lexington so be ready for it!

http://www.usatf.org/routes/view.asp?rID=330479

Women’s XC Map – My absolute favorite place to run in Lexington (it is possible that I am biased on this one).  We are so lucky to have the Cross Country course we have here at W&L.  There are miles of trails back behind the Tennis Center here on our campus.  They are all natural surfaces such as grass, wood chips, pine needles, and packed dirt. Be ready to share the trail with some friendly white-tails.  They like to run too you know!  You have four paths of entry to get down to the bottom.  Each one is different but they are all big hills.  Once you get down to the bottom there are a few smaller hills to greet you as you run but nothing compared to the one you went down to get there.  Fang Horn is my personal favorite of all the big hills on the course.  It is a series of switchbacks and it gets its name from the jagged rocks that stick out from the earth.  In the past couple of years a lot of work has been done on this part of the course so the jagged rocks are a little harder to detect but their ghosts definitely try to jump on your back as you run up.

Grease Run – (runners often make up names for their runs that may or may not clue you in to where they take you) This one got its name because it goes by all the fast food restaurants heading out of town. It happens to have one of the most beautiful sights in Lexington along the way.  Just before you get to the “grease” on McCorkle, on the left you can look through the trees and see a magnificent quarry—go and check it out!!

http://www.usatf.org/routes/view.asp?rID=330471

Furs Mill – This is a nice flat run on the roads and it is out and back so you can turn back whenever you want to.  There is a big hill at about 2.5 miles out so if you are trying to avoid hills for the day, just turn back before that.

http://www.usatf.org/routes/view.asp?rID=330476

Woods Creek Trail/Jordan’s Point – The trail that runs through our campus can be taken north to Jordan’s Point or south to the Waddell Elementary School.  My favorite portion of this trail is the section that goes behind Wilson Hall and continues over to the Woods Creek Grocery.  It is well maintained with thick mulch (fells so good on the feet) and the trees that line it make you feel like you are running on the Red Carpet—well brown carpet I guess?!  If you head the other direction, Jordan’s Point Park is situated at the end of the trail by the Maury River.  Jordan’s Point has an approximately 800m looped trail around it.

Brushy Hills – These trails are worth the short drive to get there if you are looking for a challenging run.  For most of the run you are either going up or down, there are not many flat areas.  Great workout! Take a friend … they are a little secluded.  To get there, take Jackson Ave to Right on Ross Road to Right on Union Run.  Union Run runs through the trials.

http://blackmermaps.com/portfolio/BrushyHills.htm

Enjoy running in Lexington, there is nowhere else like it!

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