The media landscape catering to (trail, mountain and ultra)running afficionados has changed quite dramatically since I entered it in the late 90s. The number, diversity and availability of running docs, currently a veritable tsunami of new additions accessible through youtube or vimeo, is one of the more noticeable. Continue reading
A good route is not enough for urban exploration. It’s a good start but without an exploration mindset you’ll have trouble connecting with and immersing yourself in the cityscape. Continue reading
If you’re really interested in a particular environment, be it a spectacular mountainscape, a beautiful forest, a heritage-rich inner city, you name it, enjoy being part of it, want to connect with it to the max, why would you want to run it? Seems a pretty fundamental question to my ‘project’ of promoting running as a way to explore landscapes/cityscapes.
It is quite amazing to see what difference connecting interesting bits of townscape to each other makes to their use. Shanghai made me very aware of that. During my four years in this metropolis the city added dozens of kilometers to its landscaped, fully pedestrianized and connected by one unimpeded cyclepath Huangpu riverfront. When I arrivedelement and started exploring the city on the run I was amazed by what felt like a curious underuse of the various bits of pedestrianized riverfront other than its major tourist attraction, the Bund. How come that all these obvious and easily accessible escapes from the surrounding hectic urban mayhem did not attract more people? Continue reading
he Southern ridges are one of Singapore’s top-most walking and running destinations, rightly praised for their great views. Descriptions normally limit themselves to the straight-forward ridge route from Mt Faber to Kent ridge park. Sometimes the add-on of Labrador park and the Keppel Bay seashore is mentioned. But the Southwestern coastal area has more to offer, with additional extension and connection possibilities, all adding considerably to the other highlight of this popular running destination: its diversity. Continue reading
An earlier version of this post was published on October 27, 2016 on my previous blog
One may argue that the most difficult aspect to notice is that which is all and ever present (the fish and water argument). Luckily, I’ve been living in big cities not long enough to run a risk of taking them that much for granted. Given my small town, small country background, the opposite argument (that, wiped clean by the excitement of novelty, my doors of perception let more rather than less big cityscape information in) makes more sense. At least to me because I constantly come across narratives about cities. How much of that is based on the urban as a growing focus of attention in social science, art, media, etc., generally, and how much is due to that unavoidable personal process which turns temporarily paying more attention into a more permanent attentional echo chamber of information consumption, is difficult to say. I would intuit a combination of both. Anyways, I hope that echo chamber serves my fancy well and is not too much of a perspectival monocle. Again I cannot say, but the below random selection of what I recently came across seems diverse enough. Continue reading
The title of this post pays homage to the writer and photographer, Teju Cole, whom I came across in my daily grazing of the digital pastures I use to hook up with the rest of the world. His talk at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, called The City as Palimpsest, is a treasure trove of insights and apt descriptions, and palimpsest is such a great metaphor for what fascinates me in landscapes and cities, that I am truly delighted to have hit upon this great artist.
Originally posted on 13 March 2014 on my previous blog
Fuzzy categories offer an endless source of fascination. Take the relatively new concept of running trails. Let’s not start in prehistory, but just go back half a century. when running – as a sport – could reasonably be classified into three kinds, by way of the ‘surfaces’ it is done on: track, road and cross-country. Continue reading
For two years in a row I reviewed my armchair trail running impressions. Haven’t got much to add. Most trends have deepened (more business, more attention to FKTs and its variations, more extreme events, many more races) rather than much new emerging. So I didn’t bother for 2015. Continue reading