1. Field Campus Trail - This is my favorite place to hike/run locally. The Field Campus Trail is part of Lake Macbride State Park which contains over 16 miles of trails. About half way through this trail you'll hit asphalt and think you've made it to the end. If you're up for it, cross the road and keep following the trail on the other side.
2. Squire Point - The trailhead is off Dubuque St as you transition from North Liberty to Coralville. It winds along Coralville Lake and you'll find body-weight workout stations to test your strength. Squire Point connects with Woodpecker Trail if you want to extend your hike.
3. Hickory Hill Park - The trails at this park are much flatter than what you'll find at Field Campus or Squire Point but it's known locally for great bird watching and will introduce you to a variety of natural habitats in Iowa.
4. North Shore Trail - This trail is also part of Lake Macbride State Park. The best place to start is near Solon High School (during baseball season make sure you park far away from the fields!). Most of the trail is crushed stone and it stays close to the lake for the majority of the 4.9 miles which makes for some breathtaking views.
5.. Palisades-Kepler State Park - Located in Mt. Vernon, about 30 minutes North of Iowa City, this park makes a great weekend getaway. You can spend the night or just pack a picnic and spend the afternoon hiking and playing on the beach.
Do you have any of your own favorites??