Some local runners were asked about their favorite running spots. Here are some of the replies.
Hefner - NW OKC
Tiffany Cone: "Lake Hefner, the hills in Edmond, and on the marathon course."
Doug Cunningham: "Lake Hefner seems to be the favorite and most common running route for locals, and would recommend for visitors to our fine city."
Amos Harjo: "Lake Hefner Trails"
Kresta Logan: "As a new runner, I prefer the Lake Hefner trails. The route is marked by the mile, and there are always several other runners along the way so I feel safe."
Carol A. Thompson: "Do you mean like when I run to the refrigerator and then back to the couch? :) My real favorite is the trail at Lake Hefner."
Bill Robinson: "My vote for the best place to run would be the trails at Lake Hefner."
Tracey Rose: "Hands down...Lake Hefner Trails :)"
Anne Wright: "I agree with Tracey! Lake Hefner Trails has very little traffic to contend with, has distance enough to make the long runs interesting, has mile markers every half mile, and the most important thing to us ladies.... porta-potties!!!"
Ric Williams: "Has to be Hefner, good location and great scenery!"
Suzie Bostick: "Lake Hefner, Downtown and Bricktown, Nichols Hills when the Christmas lights are up, Arcadia for hill workouts, 19th street when the leaves are turning/falling, Nichols Hills Plaza to downtown/bricktown."
*The most popular place in OKC is Lake Hefner - featured in Continental, Continental Airlines's inflight magazine. It's 10 miles all the way around - marked every 1/2 mile. Asphalt/concrete trails and some road way (traffic is one way on the dam) but you do have bike/running lanes (not much traffic).
There are several places to park:
1. Stars and Stripes Park - at N. Portland and Grand/Lake Hefner Drive. Portland dead ends into the park.
2. East Wharf - (near the restaurants) Take Lake Hefner Parkway to Britton Rd exit. Go West on Britton, it dead ends at E. Wharf Drive. Turn left or right and you will see the parking lots on East Wharf Drive.
3. North Parking Lot - Take Lake Hefner Parkway to the Hefner road exit. Go west on Hefner road, then turn left (south) on Old Lakeshore Drive.
Lake Overholser - NW OKC
Don Smith: "My favorite weekend place to run is Lake Overholser. Very little traffic."
* Lake Overholser is West of Council Road & NW 23rd (23rd Dead ends at Lake Overholser Drive). This is both asphalt trails and road (not too much traffic). It is about 8 miles around - no mile markers.
1. East side, going north or south on Overholser Drive will take you to parking lots...
2. Route 66 Park www.okc.gov/parks/route_66/index.html
Dolese Park - NW OKC
*Dolese Park at NW 50 & Meridian is 2.1 miles of natural trail(asphalted in 2012). This is NOT lighted at all. It's marked every 1/4 or 1/2 mile. www.okc.gov/parks/parks_maps/pdf/dolese.pdf
Eldon Lyon Park - NW OKC
Janeen Arbuckle: Provided the following information. Thank you!
*Eldon Lyon Park - NW 36th just west of Rockwell Ave. The trail is 1.5 miles with markers at every quarter mile. The trail has one fairly large hill and several additional smaller hills. Part of the course runs through a wooded lot. The park is in Bethany and information about it can be found at http://www.cityofbethany.org
Nichols Hills - NW OKC
Kristina Davis: "Nichols Hills! Beautiful scenery, relatively flat course with a few small hills...love it!"
Bill Goodier: "Nichols Hills....."
Amos Harjo: "Nichols Hills."
Tom Briggs: "I go for Nichols hills: easy safe parking, scenic and varied terrain, light traffic. I have measured courses for 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 miles, so can do any distance by running a single course or by combining 2 or more."
*Nichols Hills Park on N. Grand (a couple blocks north of NW63rd and Grand). Nice neighborhood park over 2 miles of trails/roads (not too busy) to run on. No mile markers
Earlywine Park - South OKC
Kristin Ferrier: "Earlywine Park in South OKC. Beautiful, no bikes allowed, great lighting for evening running, and safe for evening running."
*Earlywine Park at SW 119th & May has an asphalt loop about 1.5 to 2 miles long.
South Grand Trail - South OKC
*South Grand Trail... The west trailhead is located at SW 15th, west of I-44. The east trailhead is located at Grand, just south of Reno.
River Trails - Downtown
*The new River Trails... The trails run East/West on both sides (North/South) of the river. These trails do have lighting. This would be and out-n-back run. These trails are marked every 1/4 mile. www.okc.gov/trails/n_canadian.html
Mitch Park - Edmond
Kresta Logan: "Mitch Park in Edmond is also a great place to run if you prefer a challenge. The steep inclines and declines coincide nicely with the beautiful scenic areas. The route is marked on the half mile as well, which is very helpful."
Joanne Jackson: "Mitch Park in Edmond!"
*Edmond's Mitch Park is on Covell Road (NW206th) between Santa Fe and Kelly. Edmond is North of OKC. Lots of winding trails. Over 5 miles of asphalt trails.
Mitch Park - City of Edmond, Oklahoma
Edmond Hills & Arcadia
Looking for a challenge? Try the Edmond/Arcadia "hills." Both places offer rural "rolling" roads.
Christopher J Knott-Craig, MD FACS: "Hills in Edmond!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Tom Briggs: "If you want hills...come to Arcadia."
North of OKC is a favorite "rolling hill" course in Edmond (west of I-35). Take the Rt.66/US77 exit and go west to Sooner Road. You can park at the Petroleum Club (1 N. Sooner Rd.). Go north on Sooner, every major intersection is a mile. Do an out and back or go east/west at any cross street to mix it up. All the north/south roads run parallel to Sooner Rd. Whereas, east/west roads intersect Sooner Road.
Arcadia (east of I-35). There are lots of parks/trails around the lake. Or you can park at the lake, then cross over Rt.66 and take Douglas Blvd. north. Go north for an out-n-back or take some of the cross streets to change it up a bit.
Joe Barnes Park - Midwest City
Gaile Loving: "In the Midwest City area... Joe Barnes regional Park is the place to run. The course is paved and in in good condition, total trail mileage is about 3 miles. At night the trails are lit and there are restrooms in the main park area that are left often year around."
* Joe Barnes Regional Park. Take I-40 to Douglas exit, then head north to Reno.
These are short distance trails:
Syl Goldman Park, 5333 S Independence - 0.8 miles of concrete sidewalk
McCracken Park, SE 64th & Byers - 0.4 miles of concrete sidewalk
Merrel Medley Park, Kingsridge & Pennsylvania - 0.8 miles of limestone screening
Memorial Park, NW 35th & Classen Gravel trail - 0.6 miles
Schilling Park, SE 25th & Durland - 0.4 miles of concrete sidewalk
Top O Town Park, SE 19 & Stonewall - 0.3 miles of concrete sidewalk