This has to be, hands down, the best place I have ever done a run.
I was nervous to do my longest run ever in a place I wasn’t familiar with. I googled running in Stowe, VT to see what I could find. A few different running options came up, but I was sold with the rec path. Seemed like a good place to run when you don’t know the area. Even better, the start (and one end) was just over 1/2 a mile from where we were staying.
I got up Saturday morning (Yes, I know Sunday’s are long run days, but with travel Saturday worked better) at 5:30am with the plan to be ready to run at 6am. I packed all my stuff the night before, Camelbak (water), glukos (every 3 miles), base salt (1 lick every mile), dates, and a bottle of concentrated skratch 🙂 (big win for me to have everything prepped and ready, I am totally the last minute, pray for the best, throw my shit together and go, kinda person). I woke up at 5am and it was pitch black! I couldn’t go back to sleep so I decided to take a shower and waste time. I know, I know who showers before a long run? But everyone was sleeping so what else was I supposed to do?? 😉
Finally at 7am it was getting somewhat light out. So off I went. Ran from the resort to the start of the rec path. It was really cute. Had to go under a little covered bridge kinda thing that was really cute down a long set of stairs. 100% did not think about the fact that I would have to climb back up that at the end of my run. Thank god bc I probably would have obsessed over it during the run. The things we fixate on while running…
Crossed a little bridge and got right on the path. It was wide open fields on one side and set back from the road on the other, but not so far back that you feel really secluded. There were tons of little sidewalks to the main road you could take.
I felt pretty lousy the first few miles, I’m not sure what my issue was. It was also hard to tell what I was pacing bc we all know GPS isn’t so great in the woods so my range of paces was pretty all over the pace. I didn’t really mind that so much because it kept me out of my head numbers wise, I just ran by feel.
The trail is just over 5 miles long. It is curvy and has some little hills, I mean little. It’s pretty flat (I’m a fan of flat). There are 9 bridges to cross (no I didn’t count, someone told me). It’s wide enough for maybe 3 people comfortably. There’s one point where you cross a bridge and it’s pretty narrow, but there are signs saying it’s narrow there and it’s a really short distance that is narrow. Had I realized I was going to love this run so much I would have taken more pictures.
There were porta-potties at a couple places along the path. There were water fountains as well, definitely two of them, but there may have been more. One even has a fountain really low off the ground for dogs. So freaking cute.
You run by a horse farm, corn fields, wide open fields, all along a little river. There are benches everywhere to sit and enjoy the view. I actually wished I could go back another day with a coffee and just walk to the bench right against the river and sit there.
There were lots of other runners, walkers, bikers out there, but it was early so it wasn’t crowded by any means. There was a guy that had to have been doing roughly the same amount of miles as I was, but we were headed opposite ways so we waved the first two times we saw each other and the third time he laughed and said “are you almost done?” I laughed back and said I could ask you the same.
I ran it from one end to the other, then half way out and back, along with the added distance running to and from the resort, I got my 18 miles in. The path really is nice enough that it wasn’t boring running it back and forth. I even ran without headphones for a while because it was really nice just listening to the river. There are also distance markers on the path every 1/4 mile.
I will definitely run that again next time I am there and I will try to make a point to make time to grab coffee and walk parts of it just to take it all in.