A couple weeks ago it occurred to me to ask our next-door neighbor if there's an access point to the High Line Canal anywhere around here. Turns out, there's an entrance less than a mile from our house. The canal is 66 miles long and cuts across the entire city, so I guess it's not too surprising that we live near it.
The nice thing about it is that it's not just a canal--it's also a trail, a beautiful wide flat trail perfect for walking, running, and biking. The trail follows the canal pretty closely, through residential neighborhoods with gorgeous fancy houses, green fields (including some with horses), ponds, and public parks, all with the beautiful mountains visible to the west.
It had been raining for days and days, and much as I appreciated the rain, when the weather cleared up and the sun came out on Saturday afternoon, and Torsten was on a brewery tour with a friend, I took advantage and walked the dog down to the canal. I didn't bring the camera or anything, but I did have my BlackBerry so I took a couple photos.
I crossed the bridge from the street onto the trail, and it was like a whole different world. The water was calm and creek-like, despite the rain. There were even ducks (ducks!) splashing and playing in the canal. The fields on the other side of the trail were lush and green. The trees were flowering and everything felt peaceful and idyllic.
Montana and I walked about five miles altogether. During that time we passed maybe 10 or 15 people, evenly spread among walkers, runners, and bikers. Everyone was friendly, just enjoying the glorious weather. The path was perfect, mostly flat and winding beautifully, always alongside the creek. The dog was in heaven, watching the ducks and diving after the occasional rabbit.
It was so blissful that I didn't even notice the five miles. I just walked and enjoyed the view and the atmosphere and the weather.
I still can't believe that such a paradise is so close to our house. This will be the perfect walk to take with a baby or a toddler in a stroller, or the perfect bike ride with older kids. And in the meantime it's the perfect walk for just us, us and the dog. I can't wait to go back with Torsten.
What about you? Do you have any hidden gems in your neighborhood?
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