Sunday morning, after I had recovered sufficiently from my hangover to look out the window, I realized it was a beautiful day. It certainly took a while to get myself going, but I knew a run was in order. As with last week, I wanted to do something new, explore some (for me) uncharted territory. I decided for a run in the Bronx. I’ve done plenty of runs in the Bronx before, mostly in Riverdale, Van Cortlandt Park, and other areas in the northern reaches of the borough. I have not, however, done too much exploring in the South Bronx, that is, until yesterday.
I quickly consulted DOT’s bike map and came up with a rough plan. When I do these rambling runs, I don’t like to plot every move before hand, I just like to have some general idea about which direction to go. It’s a good think I was flexible, because the Willis Avenue bridge, which I had expected to cross, didn’t seem open to pedestrians (although they’re clearly working on a new pedestrian ramp which should be great once it’s complete). I ended up taking the Third Avenue Bridge instead which spit me out onto Bruckner Boulevard.
Running east along Bruckner I passed a kid who asked me if it I wasn’t cold running in shorts! I laughed and said the weather was fine as long as you keep moving. I finally turned north on St Ann’s Avenue. So far as I can tell, the street takes its name from St Ann’s Episcopal Church which was built in 1841. It was built by the Morris family (the area’s historic name is Morrisania) of early American fame.
I detoured from St Ann’s Ave to circle St Mary’s Park (named for a nearby church that was torn down in 1959). It’s one of the borough’s six original parks dating from the 1880s. The park has plenty of rolling hills and interesting paths that criss-cross in every direction. There’s a track there too but I didn’t see it on my run.
After leaving the park it was back to St Ann’s on my northern journey until I got to Boston Rd where I veered left and continued to Crotona Park. Like St Mary’s, this is one of the borough’s original parks, though it’s decidedly larger. It was named it after Croton, an ancient Greek colony famed for its Olympic athletes so it seemed a fitting place for a run. It’s a really nice park with tons of ball fields, playgrounds, and the borough’s largest swimming pool (which was decidedly closed yesterday). I’m surprised they don’t host any road races up here.
Following my loop of the park it was off to the 170th street IRT station for my return to Manhattan. During my 8 miler run I saw some interesting stuff but now I really want to return for some more exploring.
There's a map of my run after the jump:<!-- Start MMF Embed Tool -->
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<a href="http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/67862012">Random Bronx Run</a><br/>
<a href="http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/?location=New York, NY">Find more Runs in New York, NY</a>
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