I’m officially on taper now for LA Marathon which is just 10 sleeps away. I still have a bit of running to do before I go and yesterday was supposed to be a track workout. After a few long days of being practically housebound because of the snow however, I was seduced by yesterday’s sunny skies and decided to postpone speed work so I could play in the snow instead.

I decided to head out to Campbell Valley Regional Park thinking maybe I’d find some snow on the trails. Turns out it was a winter wonderland and just gorgeous in the sun…

Campbell Valley Park has some really cool
boardwalks across the marsh

I wanted to do around 5km at an easy pace so I grabbed a trail map (since I don’t know the park all that well yet) and off I went. I only made it about 1 minute down the trail before realizing just how icy it was. A quick detour back to the car for my traction spikes and off I went again.

My Wave Ascends are fantastic on the trails but I liked having
a bit of extra grip on the ice!

It was an absolutely beautiful day out and the sun on the snow was stunning. It was about 5 or 6 degrees out and I was running in just a long sleeve, capris, gloves and a hat. It was so warm in the sun I just had to stop and soak it up for a few minutes. It was lovely.

My plan was to head the south end of the park along one trail and loop back up to the north parking lot on a different trail. With my trail map in hand, I didn’t think it would be too hard to figure out the turns. The first part of the trail ran along the marshy river and I passed a few people out for walks and bird watching.

I wasn’t really watching my pace since this was supposed to be an ‘easy’ run so I just ran along until it got a bit too icy and then walked a bit. I knew I’d be taking lots of pictures so those served as my walk breaks.

I eventually made it down to the visitor’s centre at the south parking lot somewhere around 2.5-3km. By the time I did my round trip, it should be just the right distance. From the south lot, I headed off down the horse trail, thinking I was heading straight back up north again.

For the most part the snow was pretty easy to run in. It was still quite soft and only icy in sections. The horse trail I found was a little trickier because the hoof prints seemed to be icier and my feet got jostled around here and there. I had to laugh because over the course of what I’d run so far the snow just kept getting deeper and deeper!

From there I came into a neat part of the trail where the snow was super deep, barely touched and the path kind of weaved through the trees.

I was totally warm and running through that knee-deep snow felt refreshing on my bare legs. It was just one of those moments where I was so thankful that I could be out enjoying the snow. I was having fun, feeling good and everything covered in snow was just so pretty.
The trail I was on then crossed a huge snowy field that was barely touched except for a line of foot prints that I’m presuming followed the trail. Everything looks so different under a foot of snow, it’s hard to tell if you’re actually on the trail or not! I couldn’t help but play around a little bit…

After this field was where I had a little trouble picking up the right trail. I knew I was near one of the main roads but it didn’t really jive with where I thought I should be on my map. I couldn’t quite recognize the junction I was at so I picked the trail I thought went north and carried on. 
I was at around 5km at this point and I wasn’t exactly ‘worried’ about being lost but I was a bit nervous about how long it might take me to get back. I actually had no idea where I was or what trail I was on. Oops. I had about an hour before I had to be at the school picking up my son so I trudged on.
I didn’t want to run the horse trail anymore but
I knew it would lead me back north
This trail ended up linking up with another and I found myself back on the one with all the deep snow. I didn’t realize I’d looped around by this point but was thankful to be back on a trail I recognized. After all the deep snow, I was back through the woods, down the horse trail some more and eventually met up with the trail that I originally intended to take! Geesh.
The trees and the snow were really beautiful through this part.

I was about 400m from the parking lot and I came upon a gentleman I had passed right at the beginning of my run. He was the birdwatcher so I slowed down to a walk so I wouldn’t scare away the birdies he was feeding and photographing. We chatted for a few minutes and the birds were flocking to the seed in his hands. He asked if I wanted to try so I took a little handful of seed and it was so cool! They were so gentle and just kept coming over and over to nibble at the seeds in my hand. Very neat.

From the beautiful warm sun, to the snow angels, deep snow and bird feeding it was just a lovely run. I felt guilty at first for postponing the speed work but am so glad I was able to get out and play (and um, get lost) in the snow. My 5km run ended up being almost 8km so although I have no idea where I ran, I wasn’t too far off track and it was just the fun, playful run I needed.

Did you play in the snow at all?

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  1. Krista @ Read. Bake. Run. Repeat.    

    That’s awesome! I should have been more prepared yesterday with my yak traks. Those birds are beautiful, what a nice way to end the run :)

    1. Nikki Scott    

      Yeah it was a fun, unexpected ending to an already great run!

  2. Ja @ja on the RUN    

    I love my yaktrax too! :) Definitely a lifesaver!

    1. Nikki Scott    

      Yeah, these are just cheapies from Costco but they work great!

  3. Gary Jones    

    That is one tall snow angel!

    1. Nikki Scott    

      Yeah, a bit disproportionate too! It looks like she’s got no head and all body!

  4. Tina Fab    

    NOW THAT is a taper…good run!

  5. Amanda RunToTheFinish    

    see you make me think oohhh maybe we could move to Colorado where it’s cold because look how gorgeous it is :)

  6. Brian Baker    

    Great post, loved the pics! Always nice to have fun when you’re out there, too!

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