Somewhere between York Haven and Goldsboro, to be exact. I know this because my regular approximately 10-mile training route runs from Shelly Park adjacent to York Haven Elementary to "downtown" Goldsboro, a picturesque little town along the Susquehanna -- directly across the river from Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Plant, site of the worst nuclear mishap in U.S. history. While the nuclear mishap at TMI apparently wasn't all that terrible, according to a report I wrote in high school that contrasted it with the meltdown at Chrenobyl, this route is excruciatingly grueling.
It begins with a loop through Shelly Park, mostly downhill, and out of the park into York Haven. The first mile is completed just northwest of York Haven on York Haven Road, and the route continues another mile on York Haven Road, which features a steep hill from about 1.5 miles in until just before the 2-mile point. Shortly afterward, the route makes a right on Cly Road and heads down a steep hill. From here, it's a relatively flat 2.5 miles to Goldsboro.
As I approach the square in Goldsboro, there's a house with two huge pit bulls that usually come out of nowhere and scare the living bejeebus out of me. Just past the square are some houses where I usually spot some adorable cats. Today, I saw a big fluffy gray kitty sitting on a porch, which happily ended a streak over a week where I hadn't seen any cats, adorable or otherwise, on my runs.
Past the square in Goldsboro, I turn and head for home. Since it's relatively flat, it's fairly easy until the 8-mile point where I must run up a long, steep hill back to Cly Road. Last Fall, I took a walking break on this hill, but this year I've forced myself to run up it. Once I get to York Haven Road, I have long mostly downhill break until the final turn back into Shelly Park and a short, steep hill in the park itself.
It's been a good training route for me. It's almost exactly 10 miles, but I can vary the distance by turning back early, or running around the streets of Goldsboro if I'm looking to add more distance.
And if the radiation doesn't kill me, the hills probably won't.
Today's run was barely over 10 miles. With my legs still tired from Saturday's long run, my run along the river was more of a challenge than usual.
Date: November 29, 2010
Distance: 10.16 miles
Time: 1 hours, 40 minutes, 38 seconds
Location: York Haven to Goldsboro, via York Haven Road and Cly Road
Cats Spotted: 1 adorable gray one.