I'm spending this week visiting with Colorado State University alumni in the Raleigh / Durham / Chapel Hill area: North Carolina's Research Triangle. It's a lush landscape, with rolling, tree-covered hills...and this time of year, many flowers are blooming as well.
Conveniently located between Raleigh and Cary, Umstead State Park is an oasis of green tranquility, right in the city...making it easy for a business traveler like me to make a quick trip there to squeeze in a run between my lunch and dinner appointments.
I started from the parking lot near the Reedy Creek entrance to the park, just off interstate 40. I had a couple of false starts and had to backtrack a few times, as lots of improvised trails meander through the woods just off the parking lot. Once I was on the main trail, though, the rest of the route was well marked and easy to follow. (I saw some volunteers working on blocking off some of these improvised trails later in my run, so they are already fixing this issue.)
I took a beautiful, shady loop on the Company Mill Trail, then the Reedy Creek Trail, and back to the parking lot on the Reedy Creek Lake Trail.
See you on the trail!