Runbayou: Bayou City

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Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan - Tom Landry

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Bayou City

The Bayou City is based in Houston, Texas...aka the Bayou City. This is the home of the Houston Astros, 2005 National League Champions. Houston is also the only city in Texas that is as big as Dallas claims to be.

We live in the Bayou City and we train on the bayous. The concept of Runbayou is to help you develop a successful training regimen that is run by you. Click on the, Site navigation for details of the Runbayou philosophy & program.

For fun, you can read a little about Houston and her bayous below. The bayous in and around Houston support many wildlife sanctuaries and provide flood drainage to the Gulf of Mexico. Most of the bayous drain into Buffalo Bayou, the largest of Houston's bayous.

Here are some brief descriptions of Houston's bayous. In addition to the bayous, there are all kinds of creeks and gullies...please don't ask me the difference between a creek, a gully, and a bayou.
bullet Buffalo Bayou
bullet White Oak Bayou
bullet Sims Bayou
bullet Brays Bayou
bullet Armand Bayou
bullet Greens Bayou
bulletHunting Bayou
bulletHalls Bayou
bulletCow Bayou
bulletTaylor Bayou

Pictures of Houston and some of our bayous.

Buffalo Bayou

Houston was founded by the Allen brothers in 1836 on the south bank of Buffalo Bayou at it's junction with White Oak Bayou. Just east of downtown, Buffalo Bayou becomes the deep water ship channel that was completed in 1914.

Buffalo Bayou is a popular training area for folks wanting to get in some hill work and for runners working downtown. The ~5 mile loop around the bayou runs along Memorial Drive (to the north), Allen Parkway (to the south), Sabine (to the east), and Shepherd (to the west).

Some interesting facts about Buffalo Bayou include:

bulletHow did Buffalo Bayou get its name? It comes either from:
a) The buffalo fish that populated the stream.
b) Early maps show the bayou as Cibolo Creek." Cibolo is Spanish the Indian/Native American (either Commanche or Lakota) word for buffalo. Thanks to Mr. Sutton (Mayor of Cibolo, Texas) for the correction.
bulletSusanna Dickinson, lone survivor of the Alamo, was baptized in Buffalo Bayou.
bulletAllen Parkway runs on the south side of Buffalo Bayou and was originally named Buffalo Drive.
bulletThere used to be a dam near where Shepherd crosses Buffalo Bayou. The original name of Shepherd Drive was "Shepherd's Dam Road."

Sims Bayou

The historical significance of Sims Bayou goes back to 1836...remember the Alamo? General Sam Houston's army destroyed Vince's Bridge (spanning Sims Bayou) to prevent General Santa Anna from escaping or receiving reinforcements. When Santa Anna arrived at the burning bridge, his retreat was delayed and he was eventually captured.

Sims Bayou runs west to east; south of the 610 loop. A plan to build a ~14 miles of trails connecting six city parks, a golf course, and enlarging the bayou is underway.

Important historical note: Some recounts of the bridge indicate that Vince's Bridge spanned Vince's Bayou. However, it is unlikely that Vince's Bayou was where Santa Anna was delayed as: A) He thought he was at either Buffalo Bayou or the Brazos River (much larger bodies of water than Vince's Bayou), and B) Vince's Bayou was very shallow, not likely to stop reinforcements from reaching the Mexicans.

Brays Bayou

Another popular bayou that begins west of Houston, runs south of the Medical Center, Herman Park, and Rice University, and drains into Buffalo Bayou east and south of the City. Brays Bayou is key for flood control in Houston and surrounding neighborhoods. Although no longer in it's full natural state (i.e., normal water flow is along a big concrete ditch), it has an asphalt path that allows for many miles of uninterrupted biking and running.

The Bayou City Road Runners (BCRR) run along this bayou every Wednesday evening at 6:00pm. See the BCRR web site for details of the run.

White Oak Bayou

White Oak Bayou is a popular running area for folks in the Heights area of Houston. White Oak begins west and northwest of Houston, runs north of, and parallel to, Buffalo Bayou before heading south and joining it in downtown Houston.

Armand Bayou

Armand Bayou lies in a biological transition zone and is surrounded by the southern mixed hardwood forest, the coastal prairie, and the coastal salt marshes. The Armand Bayou Nature Center manages the preservation of Armand Bayou. The bayou is one of the last bayous in the Houston area that is not channeled.

Greens Bayou

Greens Bayou is the largest tributary to Buffalo Bayou and discharges to the Houston Ship Channel. The Atascocita Trail, just north of the bayou, was established early in the 18th century by French and Spanish trader and explorers. The Atascocita Trail was an important trading route between Texas and Louisiana.

Hunting Bayou

Hunting Bayou, a tributary of Buffalo Bayou, was named for the good hunting that was possible in the early days of Houston. During Tropical Storm Allison in June 2001, the Hunting watershed area received over 32" of rainfall and was one of the worst hit areas of Houston.

Pictures of Houston and some of our bayous

Armand Bayou

This bayou is near the University of Houston at Clear Lake

Armand Bayou trail bridge

Sabine Bridge over Buffalo Bayou

Running trail along Buffalo Bayou

Houston skyline

Houston skyline at night


Highway 59 completely under water from Tropical Storm Allison in June 2001

Buffalo Bayou

This is the view of Houston as you're running on the south side of the bayou (Allen Parkway); It's ~5 miles around the bayou.

I-45 looking south into Houston

Sabine bridge across Buffalo Bayou? I think not.

Buffalo Bayou

Trail on Memorial Drive looking east

Brays Bayou at sunset

Photo by Steve...I'm trying to get his permission & info.

White Oak Bayou

Sims Bayou

Popular canoeing bayou

Sims Bayou


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Last modified: 07/27/08