Hello, Sailors… and lots of miles 1/2

By | May 29, 2012

it all started with the sun finally coming out after a long week of rain, rain, rain and more rain. Combine that with a half day, Fleet Week and my love of the waterfront and New York history….

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Since I read, or half read (yes, shamefully haven’t finished it) Phillip Lopate’s Waterfront, I’ve wanted to walk around Manhattan. It’s not yet possible to walk all the way around Manhattan’s waterfront, but I hope to complete what is doable sometime before I leave this city. While some of my trips have covered the east side** (below), the west side is much better developed and much prettier. I’ve done parts of it, seemingly always around Fleet Week. Last year I walked from W. 34th up to Pier I at W. 70th St.

Since it was beautiful on Friday, I decided to do one of the many NYC things I’d never done. In this case, the High Line. I’d heard so many good things about it, saw some wonderful photos from agreatbigcity and decided why not. I didn’t do my homework so was somewhat surprised at how far east the Park was. For some reason I expected it to be on the waterfront, although in retrospect I knew I hadn’t seen it during last year’s walk. It’s definitely interesting to see wildflowers and other plant growth “taking back” the train tracks, and there are some amazing views of Chelsea from the Park. There’s one section that isn’t yet developed at it will be interesting to see how that’s finished – as well as the addition of the Whitney when it opens at the south end of the Highline in the Meatpacking District. Right now, the High Line is as good for people watching (not counting the Standard’s exhibitionists) as it is for views and content.

Suggestion: bring cash as the vendors in the park don’t accept credit cards.

At the north end of the High Line, I went west to Hudson River Park – aka prime Fleet Week viewing. I’ve always loved the park pier south of the Intrepid for people and river watching, and Friday was no exception. The Ecuadorian Tall Ship, Guayas, was in port for Fleet Week and that was pretty cool to see next to the Intrepid. From there, I headed north again to the aforementioned Pier I. I actually had the best laid plans of making up to the 79th St. Boat Basin, but the Pier I sunset waylaid me, and I enjoyed the view from there. Some times old habits are hard to break – in a good way.

TBC with Part 2, Sunday’s walk,

Oh and this weekend’s mileage was nearly 15, with an additional 18 in the gym on the bike. As I tweeted, I call that #GoTheDist, went.

** I’ve done parts of the east side in two stints. I did a version of the Bobby Wagner Walk I walked from E. 86th down to the UN and Tudor City one day and then another day I headed from E. 86th up to E. 116th to mesh errands (hello, Target) and my quest to see the City.

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