United States

Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas

The running scene in Dallas has been improving. As a spread out, quite car-oriented city, running takes some planning. Our guide to running in Dallas includes some great routes downtown Dallas, Fort Worth, and cities popular with business travelers such as Plano, Richardson, and Irving.

The best place to run in downtown Dallas is the Katy Trail, a lovely 3.5 mile corridor following an old railroad bed. Our ‘Historic Dallas’ tour includes Deep Ellum and the National Landmark Swiss Ave. neighborhood. From the Deep Ellum area, further east, the Santa Fe Trail runs about 5 miles out to White Rock Lake. The ‘destination’ run in Dallas is White Rock Lake, a beautiful park/reservoir with a 9+ mile paved path around its perimeter. Just north of Dallas, Bachman Lake has a nice 3.1 pile waterside perimeter trail. We also recommend a few routes in some of the more populated Dallas suburbs and areas frequented by travelers:

  • Plano/Richardson Area: Arbor Hills Nature Preserve, Duck Creek Greenbelt (Garland).
  • Fort Worth. Extensive series of trails called the Trinity Trail System.
  • DFW/Grapevine: Best bet is series of trails around Grapevine Lake
  • South of Dallas: Trinity Forest Trail at Lemmon Lake is a good running spot.

There are two things to be careful about when running in Dallas. One is the heat — temperatures in May through September can regularly top 100 degrees, so you will have to run early or late in the day. Also,  many secondary roads don’t have sidewalks — so best to use this guide and do so research before heading to Dallas.

Dallas’ public transport, the DART, has a a steadily improving light rail and bus system. Also, a neat bike sharing system allows you to pick up and drop off just about anywhere.

Editor's Picks

Some of our favorite runs in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas

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  • All Routes
  • Iconic Routes
  • Weather & Climate
  • Where To Stay
  • Stores & Group Runs
  • Events

Katy Trail

Dallas/Fort Worth, TX

The best bet for running in downtown Dallas. 3.5-mile elevated urban trail, between the American Airlines Center downtown and SMU. Pleasantly shaded in spots, good views, few street crossings. Lit at night! Can do return loop via Turtle Creek Trail.
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Lakewood Neighborhood

Dallas/Fort Worth, TX

Lovely neighborhood for running just to the west of White Rock Lake. Design your own route along these winding, hilly roads, which feature gracious homes and a nice canopy. Can be combined with White Rock Lake Trail.
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Katy Trail

Dallas/Fort Worth, TX

The best bet for running in downtown Dallas. 3.5-mile elevated urban trail, between the American Airlines Center downtown and SMU. Pleasantly shaded in spots, good views, few street crossings. Lit at night! Can do return loop via Turtle Creek Trail.
Explore

Dallas weather is very hot in the summer. You’ll have to plan your runs accordingly from June through September. Spring and fall there is gorgeous and fantastic for running. During winter, temperatures rarely fall below season, so it’s good for outdoor sports. It can rain during any season and they do get lots of thunderstorms. They can also have long periods of dry weather.Houston Climate

Dallas is very spread out. It’s important to plan where you stay, in order to be neat a pleasant place to run in Dallas. The map here shows the cluster of hotels downtown that are accessible to four the Katy Trail, Turtle Creek, the Santa Fe Trail, and the Trinity greenbelt. stay-downtown-dallas-map

Richardson Area
There are hotels at the intersection of I-635 and I-75 that provide access to the North Dallas greenbelt that’s a continuation of the White Rock Lake trail system.

DFW/Grapevine Area
If you want to be near Grapevine Lake, go north on Rt. 121 from the DFW Airport and you can get within a mile or so of Grapevine Lake.

Fort Worth Area
There are lots of hotels in or near downtown Fort Worth that provide good access to the Trinity trails.

White Rock Lake Area
There are no hotels in exact proximity but there is a cluster of hotels along Rt. 30 about 2.5 miles south of the park entrance.

 

Interestingly, there are no real running stores in the heart of downtown Dallas. But here are some running stores in particular parts of the city.

Here’s a link to the Dallas Running Store map. Zoom in on your area to find a running store near you.

Look for the following independent, runner-focused stores.

RunOn Texas is a small chain of Dallas area running stores, with locations in northeast Dallas, Southlake, Preston, and other locations. Extensive training programs, great race calendar, regular group runs.

Luke’s Locker is another group of running stores with multiple locations in the Dallas area. Extensive training programs.

New Balance has stores in the Dallas, Fort Worth, Arlington, Rockwall, and Southlake. LINK HERE.

Northeast Dallas

RunOn and Luke’s Locker locations.

White Rock Lake

Rockwall Running Center. On the White Rock Lake trail. Relatively new store.

Grapevine

Run On and Luke’s Locker Locations.

Community

Luke’s Locker runs extensive sponsored training programs.

Group Runs. Since Dallas is so spread out, I suggest you go to the RunOn or Luke’s Locker locations in a particular area.

  • White Rock Lake. RunOn hosts free group runs Wednesday evening.

Run Clubs

Pano Placers. For North of Dallas. Tons of regular group runs and events.

Dallas Running Club. Dallas’ oldest and largest running club.

Dallas has a very active running scene. There is some sort of event nearly every weekend. Run On maintains a very good calendar of local running events. CALENDAR

The major running events in Dallas are:

Dallas Marathon. Mid-December

Rock ‘N Roll Half Marathon & 5k. Mid-March

YMCA Turkey Trot. Attracts more than 30,000 runners. 8 mile and 5k.

DRC Half Marathon. November. Run by the Dallas Running Club