Saturday, April 6, 2013

Hampstead Heath to British Library walk

This morning I completed a survey of the 'lost' River Fleet from the watershed on the north side of Hampstead Heath.  At Hampstead Station, on the Northern Line, I had coffee at the nearby McDonald's.
Realizing I was hungry I had an Egg McMuffin too.  Then I walked up the hill to where the view from the highest point of land in London was spectacular, if a bit of a hazy blue.
There had been a delay as the Northern Line was not running between Charing Cross and Euston.  However, the fact that I had caught the 8:23 Southwestern train earlier that morning from Egham to Waterloo more than compensated.
Then I followed the actual stream down past a couple of ponds, the headwaters of the Fleet.  
This led me to the upper reaches of Camden where the river promptly went underground.
A nice bookstore kept me browsing a few moments before I attempted to follow the lowest contour downhill to downtown.  

At this point I had to adjust after one wrong turn.  Eventually I ended up at a market -- very bustling -- right in Camden Town.  
Two donuts with espresso replenished energy, that and the facilities at the market (not far from a little underground stall selling antique maps).

The guidepost maps started appearing on the pavement and I quickly realized I was close to the British Library.  Making my way down past St Pancras church, a sign there told me of how the original site looked out over the River Fleet.

I had stayed true to course after all!

I then spent two hours reading a biography of Keats, a book which inspired the Hampstead Heath walk.  This blog entry was written for the most part during a break from reading in the British Library.  

Afterwards I walked to Russell Square tube station to connect up with the Jubilee line at Green Park, and then onward to Waterloo Station (the Northern Line had discontinuous service).

It didn't hurt that the weather was fine!

PostScript: I came home and ate a big salad.  Much needed after all the mcmuffins and donuts.

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