Today’s run was very directed, for me at least. I knew I wanted to run Loretta Street in Greenfield. Why? Well, the run needed to be short for schedule reasons, a hill would be good and I knew Loretta was one of those streets I had never completely run. It also passes right by a Giant Eagle in case I got hungry. 🙂
So, with these kinds of thoughts in my mind, I set out for Loretta Street. I cut from Beechwood to Shady on Caton Street, a cute brick street in Squirrel Hill. It has modest homes, probably built in the 1950’s or 60’s, well cared-for lawns and friendly people. Caton led me to the end of Shady, where its rolling hills get out of hand and end in Lilac Street. Lilac Street, while not the steepest street in Pittsburgh, has an 11% grade for a short spell near Minadeo Elementary School.
Whew! I kept upright going down Lilac and waited patiently at the light. Beechwood Blvd was very busy and I was taking no risk of crossing without it. After an eternal wait, the little white man signified I could go and I lit out for Loretta. Above the noise of slow traffic I heard, “You went the wrong way on that hill!”. Turning, I saw Astrid and Michael driving by. They are long time friends, running buddies and world class hecklers.
By then I had reached the foot of Loretta and turned off, safe from further heckles. It was flat for a couple of blocks and then rose. This was harder than I expected. Looking at the elevation profile later, I realized that not only was I going uphill, but the hill kept getting steeper. No wonder I was panting with every step. This was a typical Greenfield neighborhood, with one and two story split level houses and crazy driveways. People were out, a stroller, a few dog walkers. Finally, I reach Loretta’s dead-end and, surprise! There are steps at the end! This short flight led to McCaslin Drive. From there I caught Hazelwood Avenue and then Frank Street as it crosses Greenfield. Frank Street is no slouch either, with a short section having a 15% grade.
Overall a nice run! A couple of new streets and a stair bonus! And the ever present Pittsburgh run community, cheering me on at every step.
On a separate note, Runs 0044 and 0045 will be in the April catch-up.