Monday, September 3, 2012

Running in Mexico City: Bosque de Chapultepec I

Two weeks ago I spent 4.5 days in Mexico's capital to meet with 17 clients, prospects, business partners and a few journalists. A busy and tiring week but a fruitful one, business wise. Technically, it wasn't my first trip to this country since I had stayed in Cancun for a few days, in Tijuana to build a house for a needy family and Encinada on a cruise with my parents. However, all the people I met in Mexico City took great pride to let me know that wasn't really Mexico. I found all of them very attached to their city, for the night life in particular and despite the inconvenience of the long hours in the traffic, either in cars or public transportation. 22 million people living above 7,000 feet elevation, Mexico City is definitely a unique place!

Beyond the highly publicized Tarahumara runners in Born To Run, Mexico has a long lasting tradition of running and many places to run in the country side if it wasn't for the danger of the drug cartels reigning across the country. Sadly, Mexico has become the most unsafe country in Latin America, displacing Columbia or Nicaragua.

So, if you spend a few days in Mexico City, better stay near one of the parks (bosque for forest). This article for instance advertizes the Bosque de Tlalpan, in the South part of the city. I was staying at the Hyatt (ex Nikko) which was conveniently close to the Bosque de Chapultepec. The Park opens at 5 am all year round and closes at sundown. There are many large roads in the park, plus side trails, and one 3,000-meter loop (~1.86 miles) with 100-meter markers:
I did a few of these loops but not quite as many as the 68 track laps of Saturday morning before flying down to Mexico (17 miles)!
If you like more variety, here is a trace of the run Kramer and I had the day before:
Note that I did venture in the North West part but this is a military training camp, so you are not welcome inside unfortunately. Next time, I'll try to find the way to cross over to Chapultepec II and III, it doesn't seem trivial on the map.

Hope you find this post useful in case you have the opportunity to visit this amazing megalopolis...


Unknown said...

Nice article. Thank you for posting. I'm in Mexico City every month and run at Chapultepec also. It's close to the Hyatt, JW, etc. and very safe.

claire said...

Very useful for my first run in DF tomorrow. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Great article. I'm going to be in DF shortly and I wont miss a short run in Chapultepec.
Just so you now, ColUmbia is not a county in Latin America. It's not even a country anywhere!
I think you meant ColOmbia, which by the way is a great country. You should come visit.