Harriet-Calhoun-Isles Chain of Lakes

Runner's World, the monthly bible for those fleet of feet, ranks Minneapolis/St. Paul second on its Top Ten list of running cities, and the title is well earned. How many places, really, can you run miles lakeside while keeping a glittering skyline in your peripheral vision and dodging the occasional Canadian goose? And this year, bearing in mind the many parkways and trails around the region deserving of your brand-new Sauconys, we too salute the Harriet-Calhoun-Isles Chain of Lakes, approximately 10 miles' worth of running that will expose you to a vibrant parade of weekend warriors, cross-country team hopefuls, stroller-pushing/dog-toting parents, deal-cutting networkers, speed-walking grannies, and the occasional determined strider shooting for the Boston Marathon qualifying time. As the seasons change, so does the range of experience: Fall at Lake Harriet promises a tawny show, and there's nothing more exciting than trying to outrun a summer thunderstorm as it blows in across Calhoun. But winter offers the most spectacular opportunity at all the lakes, since somehow the ice and snow seems to dampen the car and airplane noise. It's easy to feel like an adventurer, ý la Ann Bancroft, while leaning into the sharp winds off the ice or breathing in the shock of crystal-cold morning air. These lakes in the heart of our metropolis offer more than a mere place to exercise; they are an often romantic, sometimes frenetic, and always convenient escape for every kind of runner.


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