|Steve, Cathy, and Nicholas -- A tour of "no brake" hill (created 2012-01-10)|
I frequently refer to "no brake" hill in my running log. Here are some pictures so you can see this formidable hill for yourself and an explanation of how "no brake" hill got its name.
First, I wanted to show you the starting point for almost all of my runs. This is on 148th Street, not too far from Mission Road. Cinnamon will explain why we always stop here before running.
When it's raining, I'll start under the awning at the pool building. That keeps my iPhone dry when I start up my GPS app. It's a slight downhill going to Mission Road.
If you look to the south, you'll see a stretch that is relatively flat until you cross 151st Street. I'll take this route when I want an easy run.
If you look to the north, it looks relatively flat as well, but soon enough you'll reach "no brake" hill.
Along the flat stretch, you'll see the Fire Department
a few big mansions,
and some dogs. Cinnamon always goes manic here. She'll run really hard and strain at the leash as if to say, "Look how fast I can run, and you're stuck behind that fence." This helps me set a superfast pace in the first half kilometer of my run, as Cinnamon is dragging me along behind her.
Here you are standing at the top of "no brake" hill. It's called "no brake" hill because when Nicholas and I went biking down that hill on the way to school, Nicholas would shout out "No brakes! No brakes!" Maybe he didn't hit his brakes, but I was always squeezing tightly all the way down this hill.
There's an entrance to Ironwoods Park off to the right and halfway down the hill. But you can't cross the street easily there because of visibility concerns, so the only safe way to get into Ironwoods Park is to run all the way down the hill, cross Mission Road, and then go halfway back up on the other side.
Here you are at the bottom of the hill. The crosswalk is just up ahead. After you cross, if you keep going north, you'll reach 143rd Street and then Prairie Star Middle School. If you turn back south after crossing, you'll get to the entrance to Ironwoods Park, as I mentioned earlier.
Here's what the hill looks like on the way up. Keep in mind that I go up this hill after I've finished most of my running, so my body is feeling pretty depleted at this point.
Here's the view from the very bottom. Sometimes, I'll just look at the hill and decide that my run is over. It's an easy hill to walk up, but running up it is a big effort for me.
Here's the view halfway up. I'm almost always wheezing at this point.
You're almost to the top now, just a bit more effort. You can see the tip of Cinnamon's ear in this picture. She's wondering why I stopped to take a picture here.
Okay, here we are back at the top of "No brake" hill. The rest of Mission Road is relatively flat from here.
There's another small uphill as you turn onto 148th Street. By this point, you're so close to finishing and you've already conquered "No brake" hill, so this is a breeze. If not, Cinnamon will pull you up this hill.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. This page was written by Steve Simon and was last modified on 2010-11-03.