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“Walking in LA… Walking in LA… Nobody walks in LA.” – Missing Persons
I always find it odd that Los Angeles isn’t really known as a “running city” by any of the running magazines or popular sites online. Why not?! It’s home to some of the best world class races, great weather and several broken Hollywood dreams. Here’s a list of 10 places in the City of Angels that you absolutely need to run at least once before you die… seriously.
- The Strand/Venice Canals
I love Venice… it’s the grungy Hollywood of all the beach towns. Great place to run and people watch at the same time… always lots to see in Venice. (Watch out for bums.)
- Santa Monica Stairs
Want to feel like Rocky but get your ass kicked? The Santa Monica Stairs are notorious for making grown men and sorority girls cry. It can get pretty crowded there so try making it between 5-6am.
- Runyon Canyon Park
Here you will find A+B list celebrities, great city views (from Downtown to Hollywood) and some killer climbs. Also offers several routes at varying intensities for the weak at heart.
- Rose Bowl Loop
The Rose Bowl Loop is a nice short (approximately 3 miles) well kept trail. Also has a tendency to get crowded.
- Griffith Park Observatory
The park area is well kept, the trail and fireroads even for the most part and distance heading up towards the Observatory is doable. If you really want to make it a little more challenging go all the way to Dante’s Peak. One word: winded.
- Manhattan Beach Chip Trail/Sand Dune Park
This run not only kicks ass – it was voted most likely to kick your ass. A challenging 7 mile chip path with one point ending at the infamous Sand Dunes where sprints there will separate the men from the boys.
- Sullivan Canyon Preservation
Love this place! The out and back trail hits a little over 10 miles, so there’s plenty to see. If you want to make your run longer, you can run up any side of the canyon and find yourself along the ridge of the Santa Monica Mountains.
- Westridge Trail
At the top of Sullivan Canyon is the Westridge Trail – home to my running. The Fireroad is the most popular place to run, I however, like to take the high road and do the 1500 ft climb.
- Dockweiler Beach
Do you want to be left the fnck alone when you run? Then go here. Dockweiler is a ghost town compared to the other LA beaches and is just as nice. An 8+ mile out and back run north will take you to dock at Marina Del Rey – gorgeous!
- Elysian Park
If you’re an Eastsider, this is a great place to get your trail running fix. Here you will find hilly paths, trails as well as some cool sites like the as Marion Harlow Garden. You can also choose to make your run longer and head to the LA River Bike Path entrance (watch out for cyclists).