Tag Archives: Roe Deer

Snowy Run

What a fantastic run this morning 🙂

As predicted the snow started falling last night around mid-evening and after a few rather dismal flurries was really picking up and settling by late evening. I planned my run appropriately for the weather and set all my stuff out for an early start.

Gorgeous Running

Sure enough morning arrived and I donned my longs with a couple of long sleeved shirts – I wore my Inov-8 shoes today, for the first time running since Leadville, as neither my Evos or Vibrams have particularly good tread for snow.

When I started out the snow was relatively patchy as the main road had been gritted, but as soon as I made my way up towards Pewley Hill, it was a different story. Swerve marks and abandoned cars laid testament to the attempts of drivers to make their way through the icy streets.

As I made my way up to Pewley Downs, I was a bit disappointed that it was so cloudy and that there were no views to enjoy, so I tried to concentrate on my footsteps which were heavy and laborious through the shin high snow.

Snow from the South East

Going up to Newlands Corner I was the first to go through the snow, which is a great feeling and actually made things a little easier, although I followed many, many animal tracks, probably fox, cats, rabbits, and possibly deer. Just before Newlands Corner (about 5km) I saw my first signs of life as another intrepid soul was out walking his dog.

Normally I would have peeled off to the north and back towards Guildford, but today I planned to do a further loop round to the east and so travelled back down what would normally have been a chalk lane towards Albury. As I went down in altitude though, the view became a lot clearer and I had the opportunity to look around while I was running (and taking pictures!) and enjoy the view. After a short trip along the road towards Dorking, I turned north again and started up towards Coombe Bottom (which always amuses the children :lol:) This was a nice sharp rise up to the peak of the run along silent, snow covered trails and although hard, was really enjoyable. The last little sprint, up Staple Lane to the West Hangar car park brought me back to the North Downs Way.

Running Partner

From there it was almost a straight drag home, through the trails back to Newlands and then Pewley again. I saw another deer around here and just managed to get a picture of her in the distance staring back at me.

All in all, it was a hard run, but seriously enjoyable and fantastic to be outside yet again. I didn’t feel the cold at all, and I wasn’t too warm either, which is often a bigger problem with choosing clothes in this weather, so I guess I got it about right.

Another run planned for tomorrow morning, but the snow it due to be gone by then. I’ll believe it when I see it and will have my cold weather gear ready again.

Back to Nature

A great run this morning.

As planned I was up just before 7:00am (getting back into the swing of things for a Sunday so it only took a couple of snoozes on the alarm clock to get to the ‘out-of-bed-stage’) and after deciding whether I would wear my Vivo Barefoot Evos or Vibram Five Fingers (the Vivo’s won), I pulled my socks on and made my way out.

Newlands Sunrise

I got a nice new long sleeved technical running top for Christmas and have been putting it to good use on my last few early morning long runs. With a partial zip up to the neckline, I was certainly appreciative of it this morning as there was a frost on the ground and the temperature was back to the seasonally expected, but recently uncommon, freezing point.

I took a bit of a detour at the start of the run to get some extra mileage in on the loop I was planning, as opposed to saving the augmentation to the end as I don’t like scrabbling around for additional distance when I am tired and back in the town. Nevertheless, after 10 minutes or so I was back on my familiar Pewley Hill ‘warmup’.

The sun comes up around 8:00am at present but the dawn twilight is obvious much before this, so from the outset I didn’t need my headtorch today but was surprised when I got to Newland’s Corner that there were at least a half dozen people with cameras on tripods taking pictures of the sunrise from the North Downs. I looked hard to see if there was anything special I was missing that had escaped my attention (solar flares, vestal virgins dancing in preparation for the equinox / solstice, alien landings, etc).

Over the spine of the Downs, I was on the long trail down hill (for about the next 5km) and so felt it not unreasonable to start checking my pace. Still depressingly slow, and my caution at running downhill is still a bit of a hindrance at the moment – I hope this will all come together with an increase in performance when I up my intervals soon.  I followed the trails back down towards Guildford but peeled off towards the golf course about halfway down the hill and it was about this point that I had my first wildlife encounter with one of the local deer, a female roe deer I think, that seem to frequent the forests around here.

British Jay

Down through the rest of the golf course and towards Epsom Road my trail running for the day ended as I hit the tarmac which would take me home.  Back round through the periphery of Guildford to pick up the London road at it’s extremity with the A3 but a stone’s throw away. This was the last side of my triangular loop around the city and the start of the final uphill towards the town centre. I finally found a little bit more pace over the next few km, which I was pleased about.  As I ran down towards the London Road station I spotted four Jays together, which I was quite surprised about as I thought they were birds that are rarely seen in more than pairs. Although they are beginning to be considered pests, they are the most beautiful of birds.

It was little more than a short sprint down the high street for the final km back home to my family who were, as ever, waiting for me. We continued the morning with some of Liz’s corn pancakes – which hit the spot in just the right way.