The plan for Sunday's weekly Queen's Park Mob Run was supposed to be a hilly muddy one in Hampstead Heath (partly because selfishly I really need to increase my off-road mileage for my mixed-terrain ultra in January) so what a lovely surprise to wake up to see snowflakes falling outside the window despite the rain during the night. By 9.30 we realised the weather meant a few regulars were going to stay under the covers this morning, but what a day to miss out on going to Hampstead Heath!
As Neil and I set off from the café and up through Kilburn and West Hampstead, the slush gradually gave way to the proper crunch of snow underfoot. By the time we reached the pond at the top of the Heath via Frognal Lane, the snow was properly settling on the pavement so we knew we would be in for a treat when we dropped into the Heath, and so it turned out.
A good three inches covered the whole Heath which was much busier than usual for a Sunday morning, populated by an army of snowmen, women and assorted creatures, and hundreds of kids sledging down Parliament Hill Fields. The last time I saw this much snow in London was before I was a runner, and it was such a joy to run in such beautiful surroundings. We clocked up a total of 14 slow miles and made it back to the café in Queen's Park for a well earned coffee and pastry.
Looking forward to a few more Hoopsters braving the cold next Sunday: the plan is to do another 40/40 canal run (40 minutes out, 40 minutes back) where everyone can run at their own pace. See you all on Tuesday!