View Full Version : Favorite Trails for Trail Runners?

03-08-2006, 11:11 AM
A question for the trail runners out there.....

What's your favorite trail for running? I'm interested in thoughts on trails in the Whites, or ones that are local and closer to home for you. I'm particularly interested in easy to moderate trail runs (i.e., with little elevation gain and generally good footing......don't get me wrong, I like steeper, rockier terrain too, but usually reserve those trails for hiking/peakbagging).

Any thoughts welcome!

03-08-2006, 11:43 AM
Personally, I'm not anywhere near fit enough for this type of activity. However, I would think that you would want to concentrate on trails that started as logging roads, railroad grades, or cart paths. Since these were constructed without climbing on foot in mind, they avoid steep scrambles.

Crawford Path, Wilderness Trail, A-Z Trail, Waumbek come to mind.

Curious to see what firm examples are provided.

03-08-2006, 12:24 PM
Here is a link to the trails that I run/jog during my lunch break in the Milford, NH area.
Milford NH trails (http://www.milford.nh.gov/conservation/hiking_frame.html)

I also jog/huff/puff up the Wapack trail on N. Pack Monadnock and run down if there is snow(not like this year :mad: ), or jog down if it's bare.

In the Whites, I've only run/jogged the Wilderness/Lincoln Woods trail. All my other hikes were too steep!

Jay H
03-08-2006, 12:46 PM
If you want very mild trail running, find the local railtrail, which you use Rails to Trail's Trailfinder here:


Since they were once RR grades, you can almost guarantee they are relatively flat and the website above will tell you whether it's dirt, gravel, or paved.

Around my area, the AT is actually not a bad trail run cause it's typically well travelled and not terribly crowded, but of course, the AT in the whites would be more difficult, especially around the Pemis...


03-08-2006, 01:12 PM
i like davis path to isolation, or the bonds from lincoln woods among others. but the good answers are gonna come from k. tilton and stinky feet. listen to them and learn. they are freakin' hardcore worldclass mountain runners. :)

03-08-2006, 07:14 PM
When I was living in Orono and attending UMO last year I used to trail run in Acadia a couple times a week. I loved it.

I particularly enjoyed the Cadillac Mountain South Ridge Trail. Can't wait to get out in the warm sun again (I am a warm weather runner...I seem to have cold asthma).

03-08-2006, 07:26 PM
i see ya said "closer to home" too. the middlesex fells handsdown. dap! :)

watch out for the rangers if your runnin' right beside the reservoirs! they hate that! i've had to dive into the brush more'n once! :eek: :D :eek: :D

03-09-2006, 06:51 AM
Trailbiscuit and I did some trail running on the Oliverian Brook Trail and Zealand Trail when we lived in the North Conway area. Of course, both are just out and backs and are relatively flat, but are nice places to get out in the woods for a run.
Have fun!

03-09-2006, 07:27 AM
Any of 'em! Seriously, it depends on the mood of the day - whether I'm looking for an easy cruiser or something more challenging.

Frequently visited trail running sites for me are:
NH: North Pack, Pack
MA: Wachusett, Mt Grace, Mt Tom, Holyoke Range, pieces of the M-M

03-09-2006, 07:46 AM
My favorite has already been mentioned (Lincoln Woods/Wilderness Trail) but we cross over the suspension bridge and come down the East Side. Nice route, and some great swimming holes to cool off in. Look out for the toads on the Wilderness Trail though...almost squished a few one time.

Cruddy Toes
03-09-2006, 10:21 AM
RMC Trails!
many loops and possibilities

03-11-2006, 10:27 PM
I'll second Charly's suggestion of going to Acadia, since in my opinion, its Carriage Roads are the best trails for running in all of New England. In the Whites, another okay place to go is the old rail bed that runs roughly parallel to Route Two as it passes by the northern Presis. Another quality network is at Great Glen Trails near Pinkham Notch. You need to get a pass to go biking or skiing there, but the last time I checked, it was free to go running there. As for Massachusetts, I agree with Bruno that the Middlesex Fells Reservation is a great place to go (the area around the reservoirs is incredibly lovely), and this park's counterpart in Boston's southern suburbs, the Blue Hills Reservation is equally worth visiting. There's really no shortage of trails in Mass. if you know where to go, but some of the highlights include the South Shore's World's End and Borderland State Park, the North Shore's Maudsley and Bradley Palmer State Parks, as well as Great Brook Farm State Park in Carlisle and the large chunk of conservation land in Lincoln and Concord. Plus, anyone wanting to go for a trail run in the northern Pioneer Valley definitely should check out Northfield Mountain.

I could keep going, but this is a hiking website...

03-12-2006, 01:39 PM
Gee Nate, many of the places around Mass that you cited are also mapped for orienteering. How about that!

03-12-2006, 04:21 PM
Wapack Trail would have my vote. Very good footing with little exposed roots. The Gap Mt portion on the M&M is great. I would say Monadnock but the stares/comments from "unfit"hikers might drive you nuts.

03-12-2006, 04:35 PM
Ditto what everyone's said so far.


Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway Trail

Kingdom Trails (East Burke, Vermont)
~100 miles of mostly gently rolling singletrack! :)

Pemi Loop
(search this site)

CT & MA sections of Appalachian Trail

Sections of Long Trail, southern end being more runable...

03-12-2006, 05:36 PM
Here's (http://www.topozone.com/map.asp?z=19&n=4663913&e=283081&s=50&size=l&datum=nad83&layer=DRG25) my favorite local spot. I don't know where you are in RI, but it's in Uxbridge, Mass, next door to RI, not far off Rte. 146. If you park here at the visitor's center, you can run south along the Blackstone Canal, on a well packed historic tow path for about 1 1/2 miles to the Stanley Mill. To the north, the path is a bit more rugged (but not much), and it's 2 1/2 miles to Church Street in Whitinsville. I like to loop over Goat Hill, for a couple hundred feet of elevation (again, a little more rugged.) It's a nice area, certainly not remote, but not too busy most of the time, and follows the river, roughly. Here's the state park map. (http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/trails/Blackstone.gif)

Another fairly tame area is the 3 1/2 mile loop around the West Hill Dam, (http://www.nae.usace.army.mil/recreati/whd/whdhome.htm) also in Uxbridge. This trail is partly on trails, and partly on gravel roads, with a short section of paved road.

03-12-2006, 07:47 PM
I like Acadia, like I said, but I've never run on the carriage roads, alway run foot trails.

I LOVE running foot trails. There is nothing like it. I have seriously considered adventure and/or mountain racing.