With a climate that sees 300 days of sunshine, average temps that hang around the mid 70’s and too many incredible running trails to count, running on a treadmill should be a rare occurrence in San Luis Obispo.
Cal Poly’s recreation center may be very nice, but why would you choose to run on a treadmill when you have the option to run outside and enjoy some fresh air? Whether you are looking for an easy jog, or a longer, more challenging run, you can be sure to find a route to fit what you’re looking for.
The Poly Canyon Trail, behind the Cal Poly campus, is a wide dirt trail with a canopy of trees providing shade for the first mile. If you are looking for a short run, you can turn around at any point. The trail is comprised of a 10-mile loop that connects with the agriculture fields on the north side of campus. If you like running on rolling hills, this loop is perfect. You might want to bring a phone or camera to snap a shot of the golden hills you will see a couple miles out.
Montana De Oro is one of the most beautiful places to visit while in SLO, and is definitely a must for all runners to experience. If you are an adventurous type, MDO is the place to be. With more than 8,000 acres of cliffs, secluded beaches and canyons, you are guaranteed to stumble upon an adventure while visiting. Of course, you can stay on the trail and simply enjoy the spectacular views, or adventure down into some of the beaches and do some exploring. With miles of trails, you can go for as long as you want. MDO is paradise for any running lover, and is 100 percent worth a visit.
The Bob Jones Trail in Avila Beach is another great running trail. Running right along the San Luis Creek, this trail has incredible views as you jog along. It is 2.5 miles in one direction, so a total of 5 if you want to do an out and back. Since it is right near Avila Beach, take a refreshing dip in the ocean afterwards, or grab a drink at one of the local restaurants.
San Luis Obispo is covered in trails perfect for any type of runner to experience. These are just a few of the most popular trails here, and are all worth going for a quick jog, if not a longer, adventure packed run. Get off that treadmill, get outside and experience the one of a kind views and running trails here along the Central Coast.
Author, Annie Whitford has been running since she was 18 months old. She started running competitively in eighth grade and currently launches herself off of barriers and over pools of water during steeplechase events as a member of the Cal Poly track team. She has burned up all of these trails training for the cross country season.