By: Pat Kobela, Guest Blogger
Getting outdoors to stretch your legs can be an important part of any trip, whether you’re traveling for work or for fun. In fact, it’s practically a must with all the beautiful scenery across Northeast Pennsylvania. Running is a sport many participate in, especially when travelling extensively, since it is a portable gym and allows you to see the local area, as well as getting some exercise.
There are many trails in the area ideal for grabbing a few miles all year long.
The Luzerne County Levee Trail is divided up in to small sections and overall covers 10 +miles of off-road running. The Forty Fort access at the intersection of Third Avenue and the Cross Valley Expressway is 3 miles one way Southbound along the Susquehanna River to Kirby Park, in Kingston, directly across the river from Downtown Wilkes-Barre. On the run you can let your mind wonder with no need to keep track of your mileage since there are markers along the trail. With the Susquehanna River on one side and the local neighborhoods, parks, green space and businesses on the other, enjoy the scenery as you run. The trail runs through town and under bridges so you never have to cross a road and encounter traffic. Dogs are permitted.
At the Forty Fort trailhead, going North (away from Kirby Park) gives you another 4 miles one way; again, along the Susquehanna River on one side and the local neighborhoods on the other Parking is available on the local roads with a short walk to the trailhead.
Not looking for an urban run but more of a wooded run? Nescopeck State Park in Drums has an easy trail run, Lake Trail to Nescopeck Trail to Woodland Trail for a 3 mile/5K trail run at any time. There are additional side trails to be added for incremental mileage; without ever going too far from the main entrance and visitors’ center.
Want something in between those two trail types? Try a hybrid trail, the Back Mountain Trail off of Perry Street in Luzerne is a combination of both types of trails. Parking is available on the local streets with a short walk to the trailhead. The trail runs parallel to Route 309 and offers a one-mile turnaround point for a total of two miles walk/run. This converted Rail Trail is a flat, dirt trail, giving the feeling of running in the woods, while still hearing and seeing the highway. The trail in total is close to 10 miles but you can grab a quick run or walk with the dog before you head out on your travels again.
Don't stop with these trails! Northeast Pennsylvania is home to plenty of parks and trails giving you lots of opportunities to get out for a run and explore the local scenery.