Though Central Johannesburg
Today was my second running of the Growler and it didn’t disappoint, I really enjoy this run. Its not a race but a club run held every year by the Tyrone Harriers. There is an amusing reason for hosting this run as sort of a protest to the Puffer held in the Cape, read the proper story at www.growler.co.za
For me its a chance to run through the dingy parts of the Johannesburg CBD where you wouldn’t normally be able to go because it’s seen to be dangerous. So you get to peer into the inner Johannesburg and see the sights which is different and “lekker”. The route is 23km and has 2 tough hills (Munro Drive and Kallenbach Road) which are towards the end. It goes from Houghton through Yeoville, Hillbrow, Newtown, Selby, Bellevue and back to Houghton again.
You see the city with all the iconic buildings, taxi ranks, interesting stores, people going about a normal Sunday morning. I have to say the CBD starts buzzing really early as we entered the CBD around 6:30 and the area was very alive. The pace is pretty easy and there are a couple stops at petrol stations for a drink. There is a water point in Bertrams where the Bethany Women and Children’s Shelter came out to give us water. All proceeds from the run are given to the shelter (there is collection at the end of the run). The route started and ended at the organizer’s house (Paul Theron) where we got a free coffee and/or beer (Loxton Craft Beer). I had a beer and enjoyed it a lot, It’s not everyday you can pot back a nice brew at 9:00 in the morning.
If you worried about the 23km distance there is an unofficial shortcut to make the route 14km which means you miss out on the Vodacom Tower, Ellis Park and the 2 big hills. I snapped a couple photos, slightly haphazardly but hopefully you get a sense of the route.
And as usual it highlighted the major gap between the wealthy and poor here in SA.