Favorite for Spring

40 Great Spring Runs: USA and Canada

There are certain types of runs that are particularly special on a classic spring day. The sights and smells of blossoms blooming and trees budding are an especially nice reward after a winter of running in the cold and dark. Here’s a list of 40 runs in the United States and Canada that are particularly wonderful in spring  — an eclectic collection of parks and bucolic residential areas. The focus is on the larger cities and those with distinct seasons (sorry, L.A. and Miami).  The list is in alphabetical order, by city. Height of the spring blossoms works its way from the U.S. south in mid-March to the northeast in early-to-mid May. And, see some of our other spring lists: Best Cities in Spring, Cherry Blossom Runs, and European Parks.

Freedom Park & Olmsted Linear Park

Atlanta, GA

Freedom Park is one of Atlanta’s large city parks. Our two green, shaded routes are the 2.5 mile Freedom Parkway Trail, and a 3.6 mile loop, starting at the Carter Library, to Chandler Park. Olmsted Linear Park can be added or loop option.

The Emerald Necklace

Boston, MA

A greenway originally conceived by Frederick Law Olmsted, running 10 miles from the State House to Franklin Park. Highlights include the Comm. Ave Mall, Fens, Jamaica Pond, Arboretum, and Franklin Park.

Rockefeller Park/MLK Drive

Cleveland, OH

A 3-mile linear park along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and Superior Avenue. Bike path runs along MLK Drive between University Circle and the lakefront. Can add on at the lake, or in University Circle area.

German Village

Columbus, OH

Historic area just south of downtown, with Italianate architecture, brick sidewalks, and alleys. Lovely Schiller Park is at the center. Nice place for a run, do it leisurely and randomly, rather than proscribed route. Combine with downtown run!

High Line Canal Trail

Denver, CO: Central

The 66-mile trail connects many of Denver’s parks and has some lovely sections shaded by cottonwood trees. The most scenic stretch is the 6 miles between Three Pond Park and Orchard Road. Detailed trail map included.

Hendricks Park

Eugene, OR

Hendricks Park is the oldest park in Eugene, featuring incredible rhododendron gardens and miles of paved and dirt paths, including access to the 12 mile Ridgeline Trail.

Fresno County Blossom Trail

Fresno, CA

For a gorgeous and unique running experience, hit the Fresno County Blossom Trail between mid-February and mid-March. This is a self-guided road route featuring panoramas of orchards full of fruit trees alive with fragrance and bursting with blossoms.

Eagle Creek Park

Indianapolis, IN

This is by far the city’s most popular running spot and one of the largest metropolitan greenspaces in the nation. It includes 5K, 8K, and 10K certified road courses as well as 10 miles of trails.

Arboretum Trail

Lexington, KY

The 100-acre Arboretum and Botanical Garden is one Lexington's running highlights. Enjoy the paved, 2 mile perimeter path while viewing more than 500 native species. Add-on with Univ. of Kentucky nearby.

Olmsted Parks Tour

Milwaukee, WI

Frederick Law Olmsted - famed designer of New York's Central Park - designed both Lake Park and Riverside Park (originally "River Park"), with Newberry Boulevard being the deliberate connector between the two.

Chester County

Philadelphia: Suburbs

Chester County, one of the original three Pennsylvania counties, is a tony area west of Philadelphia and Delaware counties. This historic spot is marked by rail trails, beautiful parks, and high-end residential neighborhoods.

Cape Elizabeth

Portland, ME

Cape Elizabeth is Portland’s most affluent suburb, with lovely waterfront sections and pretty residential streets. This is the route of the 10k Beach to Beacon road race. Options to vary from this.

Maymont Park and Byrd Park

Richmond, VA

Run the grounds of this gorgeous Victorian estate with mansion, Japanese botanical gardens, and a ~3 mile paved perimeter path with some challenging hills. Options to connect with Byrd Park or the North Bank Trail.

Forsyth Park

Savannah, GA

The signature park in Savannah’s historic district. Walking paths, a large fountain, live oaks & azaleas, and recreational facilities. There are about 1.5 miles of interior walking paths or a loop around the perimeter is 1.2 miles.

Stanley Park

Vancouver, British Columbia

At more than 1,000 acres and surrounded by the waters of Vancouver Harbour and English Bay, Stanley Park is running heaven — and easily reachable from downtown hotels. If you have time for one run in Vancouver, run here.

Beacon Hill Park

Victoria, British Columbia

The largest park in central Victoria, featuring featuring paths, sports fields, ponds. Great as a standalone 3-4 km run, or in combination with other routes in the area. For some some hills, running up to the flagpole is popular.

The Memorials

Washington, DC: Central

A truly inspiring run, incorporating scenery, history, and beauty. The core “Memorial Run” incorporates the Washington Monument, and the Jefferson, FDR Memorial, and MLK Memorials. Catch during Cherry Blossoms!

Assiniboine Park

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Assiniboine Park has everything you could ever want in a public city space: a zoo, a sculpture garden, playground, outdoor theater, water views, and excellent running with accommodations.

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