I’m often asked by mother runners headed to my city for business or vacation for good places to run in Denver. Here are my top three (mostly) traffic-free spots to run in Denver. Bonus: on each of them, getting lost is pretty tough, as you can easily run them as out and backs.
The Highline Canal. It’s a 66-mile beast, so I’ve only run it point-to-point about eight times. Kidding. It’s easily accessible through many points of the city and suburbs, and is a mostly gravel path with very little elevation change. (Read; the only elevation you have to worry about is the 5,280-feet of Denver.)
The Bear Creek Trail in Lair o’ the Bear Park. This out-and-back trail run, which can be as long as 12.6 miles, is like many trail runs in the metro Denver area: starts out with a long climb, then rolls into rolling hills. The bad news is that the first few miles are a grind—and it’s often easier to run/hike them—but the good news is that you get all that luscious downhill on the way home. (Also, this trail is a favorite of mountain bikers, so if you want solitude, go early.)
The Cherry Creek Trail. Truth be told, this path isn’t my favorite, but that’s only because it’s concrete and my knees moan and groan after a few miles. Otherwise, I love it: the Creek is always flowing—I heart running near water—and because it’s a popular bike commuter and dog walking route, there’s plenty of distracting people watching. The 12-mile path runs through downtown, so if you’re staying near the conference center, it’s super accessible to run—and then grab a coffee or breakfast post-run.
If you’re a Denver local, where are your favorite spots?