For anybody living in Lower Manhattan or Brooklyn Heights/DUMBO, working this route into your routine is a must. I would recommend it for intermediate level runners, particularly because of the long, steady incline portions of the bridges. Those climbs also make it great for race training!
If you’re starting Brooklyn, head towards the Manhattan Bridge first, straight down Jay Street. The approach will be slightly downhill and once you reach the bridge, you will find a convenient entrance to the path across. From there, it’s up-up-up until you get halfway across at the middle of the East River. Then it’s down-down-down into Chinatown.
The transition between the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges is a little awkward. However, I love running by New York Supreme Court buildings. This area is really cool and has some picturesque architecture. Once you pass the municipal complex, you find yourself at the entrance of the Brooklyn Bridge.
The walkway on this bridge starts as asphalt, but soon changes to wooden planks. This surface has a different feel to it, with a little give and slight wobble when you encounter a loose board. Keep note that the Brooklyn Bridge is a huge tourist trap, so plan this run for an early morning or late evening, and don’t be surprised if you have to do a little weaving.
Finally, as you descend back into Brooklyn, hang to the right and you’ll find the last portion of the Brooklyn Bridge Promenade leading towards Tillary Street has been really nicely redone. It’s a great way to finish up this beautiful, but challenging route.