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Stage 6: Southlake

Guard Station at a gated community
Southlake is not a nice place to run.  I'm sure South Dallas, and other places like Addison/Farmers Branch are worse. I lived in Farmers Branch when I moved here and it is just dangerous to run near the central part of 635. Nevertheless, this is a very unwelcoming place to run. My pictures might be a little deceiving, because there are some nice trails here, but you can't help but get the impression you are not welcome.





Gates on their walking paths
Here is why I don't like Southlake: I've seen gated communities on my runs, but this is the only place where I've seen a gate installed on the middle of a neighborhood street. You will also find that the gated communities have guard stations and even the trails have gates! The prettiest place on a map to run here is the golf course, I'm pretty sure running on a golf course is frowned upon.


Gate in middle of street (google picture from previous course)



 Most of the cities that I plotted were found by just picking a trail from google satellite view on mapmyrun, finding a parking lot off of that trail that was easy to drive to and going with it. North Richland Hills for instance has at least three good areas you could run in. Grapevine (tomorrow) has several good places to start from also. Southlake has none, and I'm 100% sure this is intentional. The first course I made two years ago was on the north side of Hwy 114 by the lake. It was a little to off roads for me to run alone. The 2nd one I came up with ran into several gated communities, so I had to change that. The third one I made had me running on Peytonville Rd., which bring me to another reason Southlake is an awful place to run. The streets have absolutely no shoulder, which makes running 10 miles very dangerous.


1.5mi gated trail
Golf Course
They are almost all two lanes with heavy traffic, especially in the mornings. Their latest sidewalk project was to pave both sides of Southlake Blvd. This must be an esthetics thing, because you have to be crazy to enjoy running with  literally hundreds of cars whizzing by you every couple of minutes.


Southlake Blvd.





Today wasn't a great run. I finished in a good time, 1:21:00. The problem was that I just hate running here, if I would have found a better city to run in at the last minute I would have. I was completely unmotivated to start today's run, and even delayed it a while to avoid morning traffic. I just didn't enjoy it and wanted it to be over before it started. Good access to trails makes for good runners. I didn't run when I lived in Farmers Branch, and I don't think I'd be a runner if I lived in Southlake. If you can't enjoy where you run, you just won't be a runner.


Timber Creek
I don't have anything else nice to say, so enough for today. Tomorrow is Grapevine, which might be my favorite place to run, which is something I need as I hit a lull in this adventure. It is the only place I actually drive to in marathon training, so I expect my mood will change tomorrow


http://connect.garmin.com/activity/592320431

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