Since 1982 I've written a newsletter, Running Commentary. A new issue appears here each week, and material is archived.

Wed, 27 Dec 2000 09:19:14 -0500

Tourist Track

(from RC 336)

Runs often lead me to Hayward Field in Eugene. I never run more than four laps at a time on this (or any other) track, but come just to see whoís there. Someone nearly always is.

The only other runner on the track with me this day looked around sheepishly, as if a security guard would chase him off. His wife stood by, shivering at seven o'clock on a sub-freezing morning, while her husband dashed a few rounds on the freshly resurfaced rust-colored track. Pilgrimage completed, they climbing into their overstuffed car with Washington plates and headed back to the freeway.

The January Runner's World picks the 10 best running cities in the U.S. Eugene ranks only sixth, but it has a tourist attraction rivaled nowhere else.

Hayward Field houses the most famous track in American. Itís a must-see for any runner who passes through Eugene.

Youíre welcome to run on it whenever itís not reserved for University of Oregon afternoon practices or for meets. (But please heed the signs asking you not to use the first two lanes.)

Hayward is never locked, and no one guards the gates. Lights, dim ones but adequate, stay on all night.

If youíre ever driving along Interstate 5, pull off for a quick pilgrimage to the mecca of U.S. tracks. Maybe Iíll see you there.

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