Places to Run in Scranton: The Scranton Riverwalk

One of the more recent areas to run in Scranton is a part of the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail project that I covered in a previous blog. That blog discussed the section of the trail in Peckville, but today I’ll be featuring something much closer to home, namely the Scranton Riverwalk, which is a nice, though short, paved path that cuts through downtown Scranton.

Technically, the Riverwalk is only a small section of the larger Heritage Trail, but for the sake of convenience, I usually refer to this whole section as the Riverwalk, to help differentiate it from other runs my friends and I do. When I refer to the Riverwalk, I mean the section that begins at the South Side Sports Complex, either on West Elm Street or Broadway Street; it’s only about a .4 mile loss if you start on Broadway Street, but then you don’t have to cross a street early into your run/bike ride/walk. Usually, I start at Broadway Street, but do whatever works for you.

The trail snakes around on a shaded, relatively secluded and peaceful path for a little more than a half mile before it turns into a paved path, the Riverwalk proper. Paved roads are nice for how even they are, but still, we runners like to get on soft ground as much as possible, so I certainly wouldn’t have minded if the trail had continued all the way. But it’s a minor complaint. The Riverwalk follows the river along and is just a nice way to get off the busier city streets and sidewalks. Plus, it’s lit by street lights at  night, so for all you night runners out, it might be perfect for you.

The Olive St. Trailhead

Also, you could go ahead and start at the other end of the trail, which starts at Olive Street, not too far from Scranton High School. If you cross the street, you can run on a dyke that follows the river, but I’ll save that for another blog. Starting at Broadway Street and following the whole trail along to Olive Street nets you about a mile and a quarter, which is a pretty respectable distance for a trail right in the middle of the city. It doesn’t have too much in the way of hills, but if you start on Olive St. and go that way, then one hill can be a bit of a problem. But other than that, it’s a pretty solid run if you’re just starting out or if you need an extra mile or so and you happen to be passing through the city. As I usually do, here’s a map-out of the trail. Until we meet again, friends.

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