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West Lake run

Sunday morning my dad and I decided to run around Hangzhou’s famous West Lake. Because of the high temperature in Hangzhou (it’s even warmer than Shanghai, when we drove into the city my car showed an outside temperature of 42 degrees), we decided to leave early. So we started at 6:30 AM to beat the heat and the crowds. But that was in vain: not only was the temperature already above 30 degrees, but also the crowds were bigger than during day time. Everywhere elderly Chinese were practicing Tai Chi, or dancing in the shadow to the tunes of an old tape recorder. A nice sight, but a bit difficult to navigate through if you are running.

The run was nice though, but we underestimated the heat. Halfway we had to buy some drinks to ensure we would not get dehydrated. Also the distance was a bit further than I estimated, or maybe the heat made the run look longer. In total we needed about 75 minutes to run around the whole lake, so I estimate that the distance to be about 14-15 km. A bit too much in the middle of summer, but we had both never run around this lake before (my father has often been on business here, but never had time for the full distance) and we wanted to do it together at least once. Has anybody else ever done this run?

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  1. I make the distance around West Lake at about 12-13 km. I ran it yesterday morning in just over an hour at a pretty steady 5:00/km pace. My route followed the main roads as my wife was riding her bike along side and the traffic cops did a good job of keeping her off the lakefront pedestrian paths. Unlike your day, we had great weather; clear and no higher than 25 degrees.

  2. GOOD FOR YOU…I love Hangzhou too, simply beacuse of its beautifulness, and emotionally it being the capital city of my native province. I studied 3 years in Hangzhou for a master degree after I graduated from a univisity in Nanjin of Jiangsu Province.

    I am still a frequent visitor to the city…”in memory of the southern China, Hangzhou is the best”


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