Running Up Jehovah’s Hill

Racked recently profiled a woman named Beth Weinstein who launched a clothing line for runners called Only Atoms. In the Q&A she was asked, “What’s the city’s most challenging route?”

Jehovah’s Hill in Brooklyn Heights! That’s not the official name, but since the hill is near the Jehovah’s Witness building, that’s what I call it. Sure, it’s a short hill, but it’s one of the steepest in New York City—great for hill repeats.

Daunting, to be sure. And while I’ve run down Jehovah’s Hill, I guess the true test is up. Have you run up that hill? Kate Bush has.

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  • BrooklynCoffeeLover

    That’s where I do my hill repeats. If you wanna feel tired, fun 15 of those before breakfast.

  • ClaudeScales

    I think the last time I ran up the hill was in 2008. These days my creaky old body can just manage to walk up.

  • Andrew Porter

    I always encourage skate boarders to ride DOWN this hill, encouraging them with the notion they can break the sound barrier by the time they get to the bottom. If they live…

  • chris

    i love running up that hill. it’s great to plan that hill near the end of your route for a grueling finish. sometimes i’ll just do 5-6 repeats and call it good. efficient and exhausting.

  • DoBro84

    I tip my hat to those who are comfortable taking on that workout. I used to include Jehovah’s hill as part of my long run loops around the neighborhood back in the 1990’s but not these days.

    I’m 66 and plan on running another 10-15 years. I no longer do short hill repeats…I don’t want to risk blowing out an achilles.

    My favorite hill repeat these days is to climb from Hicks/Cadman Plaza W. up to Tillary/Cadman Plaza W.

  • Cindy Sm

    Run up that hill? That’s not what
    That hill was MADE for…in the 70’s
    And early eighties, my boyfriend
    Used to have a great Oldsmobile
    98 with the 455 export engine.
    Now the car weighs 5000 lbs right?
    OK- he would get at the bottom of
    Squibb hill at a dead stop. Nail it
    And do a total wild burn-out all the
    Way up the hill. At the top,from a
    Dead stop, he would be doing 65 or
    More. He would roar over the crest
    Into Columbia Hts…sometimes I
    would get out and flag him to the
    Wonderfulm Consternation of assort
    Ed ecology types and casino types
    With their mutts…Hey, THAT’S
    what you with a hill like that…display
    Some real Americanism

  • Andrew Porter

    Yeah, I too remember when it was one way southbound, and an alternate way to get into the Heights. You’d drive up the hill, then turn left onto Middagh, before it became a dead end.

  • Mandy McGehee

    tried it a few times at the end of a jog. finally gave it up when a walker passed me as I attempted to jog up the hill.

  • MonroeOrange

    its called Squibb Hill or Suicide Hill…no other term is acceptable.

    We used to ride down the hill on our bikes and whoever didn’t use their brakes won the challenge. And yes we skateboarded down the hill as well…but we used to use the sidewalk and bail on to the grass when you knew you were going to wipeout.

  • Jorale-man

    I think Jehovah’s Hill has gotten a new lease on life after the Squibb Hill Bridge to the park closed. I was taking that on runs but now I’m back to the hill. I guess that was probably a hidden blessing for workout’s sake.

  • Cindy Sm

    All the guys I knew always wanted
    To put a JATO bottle on their bikes
    And either roar up…or down Squibb
    Hill…(google JATO, or better, Zell…,
    If you don’t know what the above
    is, or the culture it represents….)

  • OnlyAtoms!

    Hi All!

    It’s us from the Racked article here. Just wanted to clarify a few things.

    First, the company is called OnlyAtoms — We’re based in Brooklyn and manufacture in Manhattan. We are long time runners who spent almost 15 years working in fashion. Hence, combining our talent with our passion!

    Next, “Johavah’s Hill” was not named by me. I’ve heard it called that by many local runners. Most hills have nicknames…”Cat Hill”, “Harlem Hill” in C.Park, “The Big Hill” in Prospect Park (well, surely it has a better name, but that’s what I call it)

    And, if any of you go out to Johovah’s Hill on a morning or evening, you will see runners doing “hill repeats” up and down the hill. It IS the best hill I’ve found in the city for this…better than Central Park’s and Prospect Park’s hills. Steep and short, good for up/down drills, sidewalk is generally clear of crowds, and street clear of traffic. I’m proud to be living and running the wonderful streets of Brooklyn…

    In the meantime, please visit OnlyAtoms and let us know what you think!