Once suitable campsites were located, the next trial was to plot the route between them.
The main difficulty here was not related to the problems with Anquet Mapping about which I have ranted previously; the main difficulty here is more to do, I think, with being blonde and female. Both traits mean that I get disorientated easily. With the very small portion of map that’s visible on the screen when you’ve got it blown up to 250% (the size needed in order accurately to plot the route), and with the task of trying to join footpaths and small road sections into a workable route, it’s all too easy to lose the bigger picture. Much time has been spent zooming out to 75% to see the big picture and zooming back in to 250% to do the plotting – only then to forget which paths I had intended to plot or missing the village that I was heading for, such that I then had to zoom back out again… and so it went on.
As I had fully expected, the easiest parts of the route to plan have been the Offa’s Dyke Path and the Pennine Way. Following the ‘Long Distance Path’ pink diamonds on the small section of map that’s visible on a 17” computer screen at 250% magnification is a lot easier than trying to make up your own route (although I did once or twice accidentally wander off route as two LDPs crossed each other).
Accommodation is also a bit easier to find on these routes, although a significant amount of searching was still required to hunt out places to camp on the ODP.