Saturday, September 24, 2011

Anne Springs Close Greenway

I'm in South Carolina for two weeks for work and making the best of the extended southern summer to keep up with my marathon training.  Today I went to the Anne Springs Close Greenway, which is a large network of hiking, biking, and equestrian trails in Fort Mill just south of Charlotte.

It took me some time to find the trailhead to the section that I wanted to run, but once on the trail, I was in heaven.  So much so that I developed a theory that trail half marathons may be my calling.  I don't know if that's true, but this was a great trail. 

I made it about 2.5 or 3 miles into the Blue Star trail when I missed a marker and went the wrong way for a while.  I didn't care.  I doubled back, found the proper way again, and continued on.  I loved the woods.  I loved the suspended bridges over the creek.  I loved the hawk that took flight right in front of me with a snake in its beak.  I loved the little country landmarks like the old mill and the train trestle.

Because of my little detour, I decided to turn around before reaching the southern most terminus of the Blue Star trail.  But I plan to go back tomorrow and start at the opposite end to run the piece that I missed.  If you love trail running, this is a fantastic system.  With summer rain filtering through the trees and damp leaves brushing past my legs, I ran with a smile on my face and felt amazing.

Here is a link to the trail map.  I started at the top of the map at the Dairy Farm and Greenway Headquarters (letter G on the map) and took the Blue Star trail south to the east.  I turned around near the Webb Grist Mill (letter J).

I may have to find a trail race in Michigan after the Chicago Marathon is done.  So much fun!

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