The Best Places to Run in Phoenix

Despite our scorching temps, there are plenty of great spots to run around town. And no, I’m not talking about the treadmill. 

Squaw Peak

Dreamy Draw

There’s miles and miles of trails surrounding Phoenix’s Piestewa Peak. When you’re not hiking to the peak of The Valley’s second highest summit check out the trails. One of my favorites is a four mile loop that begins on pavement, winds through a neighborhood and back onto the trail. The elevation climbs are moderate but when you’re coming down you’ll get such an adrenaline rush that you’ll feel like you’re flying. It’s pretty much the best feeling ever. To try out this loop start at the trailhead entrance and turn left. For more details you can find the route on Nike+.

14863174327_3a6f81f846_bMartin Ely/Flickr

Tempe Town Lake

When I used to live on the lake this was my go to run. It was literally right outside my door.  I don’t run this route as nearly as much as I used to but I still like to run it from time to time. I don’t know about you, but I like running near water. And here in Arizona, it’s pretty rare to find a nice body of water to run next to in the city. This route is paved and I would consider it mostly flat.

6216335230_651b6caa40_bSean Hobson/Flickr

Papago Park

I’ve recently stated mountain biking and riding here is one of my favorite places to do it. But it’s not just great for cyclists it’s great for runners too. Plus, you can run the stairs for a more intense workout. Every Wednesday morning, rain or shine, there’s a Phoenix running group killing the stairs for about 45 minutes. They welcome newbies, don’t be shy. Give it a try.

3158225269_7d00246eee_bD. Patrick Lewis/Flickr

The Arcadia Canal

I guess you could call the canal a body of water. There are fish living in there. But it’s not the prettiest. But, it’s still a great running path. The route that I typically run starts in Arcadia and I typically turn around when I hit Scottsdale or you can run all the way to the Scottsdale Waterfront. Make it your own! I also love this spot because on the weekends we sometimes run the two miles to O.H.S.O. Brewery for brunch and walk the route back.

National Trail 2

South Mountain

It’s the biggest park in Phoenix. And it’s the largest municipal park in the United States. There’s hundreds of bikeable, great hiking trails and runnable routes here. I hike here all of the time and it’s dog friendly so sometimes I bring my jack russell along. I generally run two miles in two miles out. Start the trailhead, just past the parking area. There is a bit of a climb on this one. The turn around point is at the National Loop Trailhead. Or instead of looping back, you can opt to run up the mountain. Your choice!

5892712302_052ff5638f_bDru Bloomfield/Flickr

The Scottsdale Green Belt

Finding a green spot in Phoenix isn’t easy. But, there’s a couple gems hidden throughout the city. One’s in Scottsdale. The Scottsdale Greenbelt has 11 miles of trails that are easy to navigate. The trails are also bike-friendly so you can bring your cycling friends here, too.






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