Distance: 22 miles
Got up early and met Steve G. and Kathy G. at 6 a.m. for a run on Denver's Highline Canal, a 66-mile canal, constructed from 1880-3, that runs northeast from Waterton Canyon to the Rocky Mountain Arsenal near Denver International Airport.
We parked at the Goodson Recreation Center in Greenwood Village and ran northeast on the canal path for 10.75 miles before turning around and running back to the car.
I'd never before been on the canal trail, but will be back soon. The path, which drops in elevation only about 32 feet over its entire 66-mile length, is nearly flat (a few very short and gentle hills are on the path, but not the canal) and the surface is dirt and crushed gravel. Aside from a few bike tire ruts now frozen in what was mud, it's a perfect running surface. A nice change from the hilly routes I've been doing recently for my long runs.
Steve and I ran the 22 miles at an easy, conversational pace, ending with an 8:35 per mile average pace. And, since we started the run so early, we were done and home by 10:30 a.m. or so.
Many thanks, Steve, for introducing me to the Highline Canal trail.