Running Map – Riverside Park

Manhattan: Central Park, Riverside Park, Armory Track, Roosevelt Island, East River Promenade, Inwood Hill Park and Fort Tryon Park, Battery Park, East River Park


Riverside Park

Sometimes you need to get away from Central Park, and Riverside Park is a nice option given its proximity to Central. Running along the Hudson River from 58th Street to about 156th Street, Riverside Park offers a relatively flat scenic cruise. Since you’ll be scrolling down, we’ll start towards the northern end of the park and make our way south.

Warning: This is one long skinny park… be prepared to scroll.

Upper Riverside Park 156th Street to 112th Street

***These maps can be downloaded from the Riverside Park Fund: PDF.

Riverside Park 148th to 156th
Riverside Park Map 148th to 156th

The northern most end of the park connects you to Fort Washington Park, which you can then run through to Fort Tryon and Inwood Hill Park to extend this run. At this point you can take the bike path that runs along the Hudson River. If you are driving to Riverside, this is one of the locations for parking, so you can make a nice out and back run from here.

Riverside Park 139th to 147th
Riverside Park Map 139th to 147th

As you head down the bike path, you’ll eventually run into Riverbank State Park. It is a park built upon a treatment plant, but don’t be alarmed there is one prized piece of running real estate here – an all weather 400m track. I’ve used it a few times for an interval workout, but there are generally three problems. First, it is routinely scheduled for some type of local sporting event, which means the track is essentially closed. Second, if it isn’t scheduled it always seems to be occupied by a pick-up soccer game, so be warned that you have to keep one eye on the track and the other to the inside of the track. Finally, when you get lucky and there isn’t a crowd you have to compete with the wind. Remember you are on the river, so you get an unimpeded whipping from the wind. Now that being said, there are times when you can get it all to yourself on a calm sunny day. It’s worth a try. Sometimes as I run Riverside, I’ll just check and if I’m lucky, I’ll throw in a few unscheduled intervals in the middle of my run.

Riverside Park 130th to 138th
Riverside Park Map 130th to 138th

From here you have a choice to make. You can take the bike path again along the shore and enjoy the view of Jersey or take the bridge from Riverbank State Park towards Riverside Drive and run the bike path along the drive. Be warned that you’ll be leaving the green scenery for a little while as Riverside Drive turns into a bridge – not a bad thing, but something you should know so you don’t feel like you’ve taken the wrong path.

Riverside Park 121st to 129th
Riverside Park Map 121st to 129th

If you have chosen the shore path, you’ll get more beautiful views of the river. If you chose to run along Riverside Drive, you’ll be back in the park where you’ll pass the General Ulysses S. Grant Memorial.

Riverside Park 112th to 120th
Riverside Park Map 112th to 120th

Again, if you’ve chosen the shore, you’ve got shore for a while. In fact, I should mention that you’ve made the commitment to 100th Street. If you have chosen the drive, you actually get another choice. You can stay along the rode, or you can take the long flight of stairs on 120th into the heart of Riverside Park. If you take the stairs, you’ll be rewarded with a water fountain and restroom. From there you can run along the paved path on the inside of the park, which is usually my pick of the three routes.

Lower Riverside Park 111th Street to 58th Street

***These maps can be downloaded from the Riverside Park Fund: PDF.

Riverside Park 103th to 111th
Riverside Park Map 103th to 111th

Now you’re finally in the lower half of Riverside Park. Each route continues without surprise.

Riverside Park 94th to 102th
Riverside Park Map 94th to 102th

At 100th Street there is a connecting path from the shore to the inside of the park. If you are running along Riverside Drive, you have to be careful when you cross 96th Street. The cars can be a little wreckless there. I’ve personally seen some very close calls.

Riverside Park 85th to 93th
Riverside Park Map 85th to 93th

At 93rd, you’ll be forced to leave the shore and run through the park. Inside the park, you’ll be running through the Serpentine Promenade, which has a semi-runnable dirt path running along the side.

Riverside Park 76th to 84th
Riverside Park Map 76th to 84th

At 83rd Street there’s another path to the shore, which will lead you to the Boat Basin Cafe. If you need to get back to the street, there is another path that you can take through the cafe, which they don’t seem to mind.

Riverside Park 58th to 75th
Riverside Park Map 58th to 75th

If you are running along the shore, there are restrooms available at 75th Street and a 220-yard dirt track on 73rd street. This track has terrible footing and the turns are way too tight to run anything fast, but for some reason there are always runners there. If you’ve been running along Riverside Drive, the park will funnel you down to the shore at 72nd Street. You’ll be guided to a tunnel that takes you to the track. At this point you can head south along the water along the bike path. At 58th Street you’ll be leaving Riverside Park, but you can take the bike path all the way to Battery Park.

Mileage

The actual mileage is tough to measure since you have so many options, but as a general rule one mile is equivalent to about 20 city blocks. So, from 58th Street to 156th Street you got about a 5 mile run or approximately a 10 mile out and back run. Something else to consider if you are running an out and back run, Riverside Drive slopes down heading south so you have an uphill going back.

Directions

  • Running: You can run about 1/2 mile west from Central Park and drop into Riverside. From the North, you can run from Inwood Hill Park, Fort Tryon Park, and Fort Washington Park. From the South, you can run up the bike path that starts in Battery Park.
  • Subway: Take the 1 Train and stop anywhere between 72nd and 157th Street and walk west.
  • Bus:The M5 bus runs along Riverside Drive, which is your best bet.