Where There’s a Hill, There’s a Way   Leave a comment

Anyone want a hill workou? I just ran across Trailhead Randy Young’s article in the CHN (http://www.chapelhillnews.com/2011/02/02/62275/unto-these-hills.html) about the Laurel Hill Challenge in early February. In the sidebar, Randy lists a few local hill workouts, including distance and elevation. It there a Blazing Hill Tour in our near future?

Where There’s a Hill, There’s a Way

Locals need not search far and wide for hills upon which to walk, run, or bicycle. Even here in the relatively low-altitude central Piedmont of North Carolina, ancient undulations give Chapel Hill its name. Here are a few choices for those looking to get "Up, up," without going "away."

Battle Branch Trail

Length: 1.5 miles.

Net elevation: 251 feet

For those "inclined" to incline, Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation’s Battle Branch Trail provides a decent climb from behind the Chapel Hill Community Center and running all the way up to the northeast corner of the UNC campus. Investigate Battle Branch and a host of UNC campus trails through the UNC Recreation’s wellness site: http://www.uncwellness .com/

Borland Hill

Length: 2.72 miles.

Net elevation: 324 feet.

Ask any avid bicyclist in the area for a challenging hill close to home but far from traffic, and they’ll likely name this notoriously long incline off Arthur Minnis Road northwest of town. Set the bike for little gears and get ready for some serious burn in the quads.

Lone Pine Hill

Length: 0.32 miles.

Net elevation: 112 feet

What this narrow neighborhood road lacks in length, it makes up for in steepness. Dangling innocently off a hillside at the eastern end of Rosemary Street, the precipitous nature of this hill evoked one member of the local women’s running group "See Jane Run" to equate scaling its height to "delivering a baby."

Hillsborough Street

Length: 0.68 miles.

Net elevation: 157 feet.

Most of us have driven this route from the intersection with Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard up the long hill to Rosemary and Franklin Streets, but even a tired engine doesn’t tell the whole story. Traffic is daunting, but the sight of campus at the top is a welcome reward.

Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area

Length: 3.0 miles.

Net elevation: 867 feet.

For those looking to hit the heights, the highest point in Orange County is accessible through the Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area off Orange Grove Road in western Hillsborough. The area features 190 acres of natural beauty and even a couple of ponds for fishing," according to www.visitchapelhill.org/ .

Strowd Hill

/ East Franklin

Length: 1.43 miles.

Net elevation: 210 feet.

From the intersection of Estes Drive to the UNC President’s house at the corner of Raleigh Street is a route as picturesque as it is tiring. A reward at the top is the aroma of Franklin Street’s finer eateries, coffee, and, of course, Krispy Kreme donuts. For a few extra feet of steepness, you can start it from the eastern terminus of the Bolin Creek Greenway at the Community Center and tackle Roosevelt Drive.

UNC Botanical

Garden Trail

Length: 1.5 miles.

Net elevation: 146 feet

Located off old Mason Farm Road, this 1.7-mile trail offers view of deer, beaver, fox, rabbits, salamanders, and a wide array of birds.

And the accompanying article…

Unto These Hills
We all have climbs to accomplish, some steeper than others

Runners approach the last stretch of Laurel Hill during their practice run Saturday morning.



Posted March 3, 2011 by yoda in Uncategorized

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