Monday, April 25, 2011

Walking the Greenways, #2

Better late than never, right?  A few weeks ago, while I was neglecting the blog, Coty and I walked another one of our area Greenways.  We had a lovely, sunny Monday - was it three weeks back - and took time to walk part of the Little Sugar Creek Greenway.

The plan is to eventually have 15 miles of linked trails, starting just north of uptown Charlotte all the way to the South Carolina line.  Currently, there are three unconnected sections, so we figured we'd do the northern section, part of the middle section and save the southern section for another day.

When we arrived at the parking area  we found this sign. Bummer.  We did try calling the number, but just got someone's voice mail.

We walked past the soccer field at Alexander Park, but the gang graffiti under the railroad bridge was not so welcoming and we decided, since it is officially closed right now, to save this section for another day.  From Alexander Park, this section goes up to Cordelia Park on the southern end of NoDa.  It will be a well used section, someday.  But it wasn't the day we tried.  We will go back.  Here's more about this section.

On to Plan B.  We headed to Charlottetown Avenue and parked along the street (free parking for two hours) and found the northern end of this newest section of Little Sugar Creek.  If you've lived in Charlotte for any length of time, you may remember that this section of town, just north of CMC, was rather an eyesore for a long time.  An old, closed mall and large parking lot sat beside a sad looking, dirty creek.   I don't know the whole story, but the powers-that-be got together and tore down the mall, built condos, and some large and small retail, a few restaurants and best of all, worked on creek and habitat restoration and made it a lovely place for a walk near downtown.  I was impressed.

This is looking north to the point where this Greenway section starts.  See where the pavement ends just before it goes under the bridge.  Someday, this will be linked up, around or through uptown somehow, to the Alexander Park section and on up to NoDa.

Banners line this little section, diners sat at outdoor tables.   Really, this little walkway is quite a treasure.  Someone had a lot of foresight when they planned this.

The creek restoration includes some nice stone work at spots where other creeks and storm water drain into Little Sugar Creek.  

Just near the hospital, lots of redbuds, wisteria, and other flowering shrubs in were in full bloom.  If I worked at the hospital, I know where I'd take my breaks!

South to Freedom Park...

We walked about halfway through the park and then turned around and headed back north.  We had a deadline...

My walking partner and I were headed to see Jane Eyre at the Regal Manor after our walk.  We wanted to get done in plenty of time to make our 2:00 matinée!  

Nice views of the city skyline heading north.

This was a lovely walk.  I'd go again.  Freedom Park is beautiful, especially in the spring.  We plan to pick up where we stopped in the park and finish this central section, then drive a little south and pick up the southernmost section another day soon.

To read a little more about Little Sugar Creek Greenway, go here and here.

1 comment:

Amber Benton said...

Beth, did you know there is a whole group of 'hikers' who have been connecting the dots so to speak of the Charlotte Greenways for a few years? I guess technically you aren't supposed to - especially if there are signs posted like the one you photographed, but I've run into some of them on the greenways. And Jane Eyre - I'm jealous - I haven't seen it yet, though I did watch the older version on Netflix recently.