It was great to be back in London and running with you this past week. Aren’t the parks just gorgeous right now? I expect we will see more Spring glory on our routes this week. The photo above, from Jess Browne, is a couple weeks old, but it was too good not to use here!
Running this week. We start off the week with a favourite Adventure Run– the Richmond to Hampton Court Palace route. Please note– departure is from Finchley Road and Frognal Overground Station at 8:30! We’ll take the 8:41 train to Richmond (about a 30-min trip), start the run there, and follow the winding Thames Path for about 8 miles to Hampton Court Palace. It really is a beautiful run! If you don’t feel like doing 8 miles, you can always pull off at Kingston-upon-Thames (where we cross the bridge) for 6 miles. But if you go on to Hampton Court Palace, meet at the Tiltyard Cafe, through the gardens, for coffee and a snack. We take a train back to Waterloo from the Hampton Court train station. Full directions can be found below. For the rest of the week, we’ll keep it more local, with Kensal Rise on Wednesday, and up to the Heath for the Highgate route (or your choice).
Shout-outs and Announcements. It’s a big weekend for races! Barbara Jones is running the very hilly and challenging Balmoral 15-mile Trail Run on Sunday afternoon. Sue Wheeler and I, along with WRW alums Kate Worrell and Susan Malandrino, will be running the London Marathon tomorrow. I have heard that some ladies are going out to watch and cheer– if you are interested in connecting with the group, just reach out to your pace group leaders, who should know the plan. And, getting personal for just a moment, Sue and I both want to thank you all for all the good wishes and incredible support over the last weeks– you all are simply the best!
SAVE THE DATE
Wednesday 8 May – Covent Garden
Friday 10 May – NEW Adventure Run – Dollis Hill to Hampstead (tentative)
Monday 13 May – NEW Adventure Run – Windsor
Wednesday 22 May – Sights of London/Leaver’s Coffee
Friday 31 May – Borough Market
Monday 3 June – Brick Lane
Enjoy the rest of your weekend, everyone! Looking forward to seeing you all out on the routes next week!
Monday 29 April – Hampton Court Adventure Run (8 miles, or option of 6 miles)
We will meet at the “Finchley Road and Frognal Overground Station” at 8:30 for the 8:41 train to Richmond. We will arrive in Richmond around 9:15 to start our run. You can take a bus up Finchley Road to the station or take the tube to Finchley Road, turn left and walk up to the Overground Station.
Leave the Richmond Overground Station, cross the road at the traffic lights and go straight through the narrow Old Station Passage. At the end, turn left on Little Green and follow straight past the Richmond Green until taking the left fork onto Friars Lane. Follow Friars Lane as it winds down to the river path.
Now we stick to the river path along the Thames for the rest of our run. We will pass the grand red brick Ham House on the left, and eventually join Lower Ham Road. Keep right at the fork at Canbury Gardens, staying with the river just to your right. As you approach the center of Kingston you’ll run under a metal railway bridge; continue along as close to the Thames as possible until the next bridge, called Horse Fair Bridge.
At the bridge you have two options — turn left into Kingston to stop at 6 miles, or cross the bridge to continue to Hampton Court Palace for 8 miles.
6-mile route: Go up the stairs on the near side of the Horse Fair bridge and turn left into town. Follow the road to the Kingston train station.
8-mile route: Go up the stairs on the near side of the Horse Fair Bridge and cross the bridge. Turn left at the end of the bridge onto a very pretty path called Barge Walk, which follows the river all the way to Hampton Court Palace. Once we arrive at the Palace, take a few snaps, and if you can stay for a coffee, we’ll meet at the Tiltyard Cafe, a restaurant on the Palace grounds with lovely outdoor space (and indoor too in case of inclement weather!). Cross the courtyard in front of the palace and then walk past the rose gardens to the cafe; no need to pay the Palace entrance fee.
Head back to London via Hampton Court train station. To get there, cross over the Thames on Hampton Court Bridge and the train station will be on your left. Be sure to check your travel sites to confirm the options for the trip home. There are usually local and express trains that go into London Waterloo.
Wednesday 1 May – Kensal Rise (5 miles)
This route takes us along the canal to the west. Please be aware of bikes along the canal and form a single file whenever you hear someone call out ‘bike!”.
Start out heading west on Circus Road, turn left on Grove End Road, then right on St John’s Wood Road at the traffic light. Then turn left on Cunningham, right on Aberdeen, and cross Maida Vale to the right side of Blomfield Rd. Stay on the right side of Blomfield Road as you run parallel to the canal. Turn left at the second bridge over the canal (at Westbourne Terrace Road), turn right just after the bridge, follow the sidewalk along Delamere Terrace, and join the canal path heading west at this point. Run to the Ladbroke Grove exit. Here we turn right and run over the bridge along Chamberlayne Road to Harvist Road. Turn right on Harvist, which turns into Brondesbury Road, and take that to Kilburn High Road/Maida Vale. Turn right and follow Maida Vale to Hall Road where you turn left and run back to Starbucks. If you want to shorten this route, run west on the canal and turn back at your desired half-way point.
(The two mile mark is at the point on the canal when the Westway motorway is over our heads.)
Friday 3 May – Highgate (7.5 miles)
Head up Fitzjohn’s, as usual, and continue past the Hampstead Tube and Whitestone Pond to stay on Spaniards Road. Do not enter the Heath at the normal entry point, but stay on Spaniards Road as it wraps around the outside of the Heath, past Kenwood House and past The Bishops Road where Spaniards Road turns into Hampstead Lane.
Continue on Hampstead Lane as it edges around the outside of the Heath in a gentle rise until you reach The Grove, where you turn right. [The Grove is a pretty, tree lined street just before the Highgate roundabout.] Run to the first right turn, a lane called Fitzroy Park with a traffic barrier across the road. Pass around the traffic barrier—this is fine! And continue down the road, past lovely homes and a famous allotment on the right side. This road curves downhill to the left and takes you to the entrance of the Heath on your right side, near a set of bathrooms and just before Merton Lane to the left.
Enter the Heath, run past the loos (on your left) and take the path to the left as it runs along the model boating pond, the men’s bathing pond and a third pond. When the sidewalk dead ends, take a right to run along the exercise fields and running track. Exit the Heath past the paddling pool, crossing over the bridge onto Constantine Road. Take a right, running past South End Rd/Fleet Rd, past the Royal Free Hospital and cutting up the path to the left just past the Royal Free’s entrance driveway to take a short cut to Haverstock Hill. Go left on Haverstock Hill, crossing at the pedestrian stoplight to the other side, then turn right on to Belsize Avenue. Stay on Belsize Avenue (its name changes to Buckland Crescent) to Fitzjohn’s where you turn left to run towards Swiss Cottage Library, then scoot over to St Johns Wood Park Road and back to Starbucks.
Click here for maps of all of the Heath routes.