The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Prickle, Scratch, Sting

It has become an increasing problem of late that so many of our local paths (and no doubt similar paths over farmland nationwide) are overgrown with, amongst other things, five-feet tall stinging nettles, and long snaking brambles.

With that in mind, today’s outing was folly.

Even greater folly was choosing to wear shorts (the first time in eight years that I’ve walked in shorts; eight years ago I got put off by an encounter with nettles…). I didn’t even own a pair of shorts until half an hour before we left the house, when an old pair of walking trousers succumbed to an assault with scissors and WonderWeb.

The inspiration for today’s walk was, once again, the football (or to be precise, more Football Avoidance). A barbecue had been enjoyed with eldest step-son and family, and when everyone then settled down to watch the football, I strode off in the direction of home.

Eight million cows in a small field was the first obstacle, followed swiftly by nettles, brambles, thistles, broken stiles, barbed wire, nettles, brambles, thistles, electric fences, waist high grass, nettles, brambles, thistles, knee high grass, nettles, brambles, thistles, woefully lacking waymarking and, just for good measure, a few more nettles.

I didn’t make it the whole way home. Just as I had overcome the last obstacle and was set for an easy stroll through the last 3-miles, I spoke to Mick and he was just heading home himself. I’d had enough of my outing. “Wait ten minutes, then meet me at the bridge” I said.

I climbed into the car a while later with bloody scratches and nettle rash all over my lower legs. They’re still tingling now. I’ll think more carefully about wearing shorts in future. And I’ll certainly not be taking that route again!


 An ex-woodland sort of a pond


Overgrown nightmare – fortunately this one easy to by-pass


If I’d battled through the nettles here, I would have been faced with wheat planted right up to the field boundary. I took my chances with the cows in the adjacent field.

The stats were 7 miles walked, with a tiny handful of ascent.

National Memorial Arboretum

The route for yesterday’s fresh air and exercise was based entirely on some reasonably local Geocaches, and gave the added bonus that it would take us to a couple of local areas that we have not before visited.

It also took us to the National Memorial Arboretum at Alrewas. We’ve been there a few times, and always seem to find ourselves visiting on unusually busy days. That yesterday was National Armed Forces Day had slipped my mind until we saw how many people were around (many in uniform).

Our route only took us around the edge, but there seem to have been a few changes/additions since we were there last, so I was put in mind to return on a sunny weekday to have another proper look around (and if you ever happen to find yourself driving up or down the A38 past Alrewas, I would recommend pausing to take a look around the place yourself). Here are a few snaps of the bits we passed:

 IMG_1699 IMG_1700 IMG_1701 IMG_1702 IMG_1706

Leaving the Arboretum, Croxall Lakes was our objective, and more particularly the Noon Pole there. Apparently, there are a series of these poles located throughout the National Forest, their feature being that for 10-15 minutes at ‘true noon’ on Midsummer and Midwinter’s days, light will shine through the slit in the pole (true noon being 1306 in summer in this neck of the woods). This one is made of English Oak:


By coincidence rather than by design, by the time we had found the Geocache we were seeking, and sat and had a spot of lunch, it was 1pm, so we hung around for a while. Finally, at 1.16 the light shone through, then the sun promptly went behind a big cloud and off we set for our return leg.

A smidge over 9 miles were walked in total. Being the land of flatness, most of our ascent was created by going over bridges!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Tuesday 22 June: Yorkshire 3 Peaks


A 23.9 mile route* taking in the summits of Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough, completed in 8 hours and 15 minutes.


As I climbed up the side of Pen-y-Ghent last Monday, it struck me that (to my recollection) I’ve never been up Whernside or Ingleborough, and I thought it was about time that I righted that omission. Meeting Mick at the end of my walk last week, I asked how he fancied tackling the two of them this week. He reminded me that he has a poorly back at the moment that is precluding him from such activities.

The subject went from my mind until the following morning. In the process of waking up on Saturday morning, the thought suddenly jumped into my head that having walked 24.5 miles last Wednesday, with 4500 feet of ascent, with a full pack, and in hot weather, I was probably in a fit state to have a crack at the full Yorkshire 3 Peaks route.

Mick woke up to be greeted by a request to be my support for the day. He’s a nice chap is Mick, and he readily agreed.

Today was the day in question (well, no point in hanging around once you’ve decided to do these things!).


With the day forecast to be rather on the warm side for walking up hills at speed, I adjudged that an early start was probably wise, and so it was that at 0610 I left the car park in Horton in Ribblesdale, telling Mick I would see him in three hours time by Ribble Viaduct.

My departure was hot on the heels of a group of five women and a little ahead of them was a singleton chap (all of whom had been seen as we drove up to the car park). I’ve no idea what route the women took to get out of Horton, but it certainly wasn’t the most obvious or the most efficient, as only about ten minutes in I saw them walking towards me, as we all headed to the same turning, and a few moments later I was striding on ahead.

It was 0705 when I arrived on the summit of Pen-y-Ghent on the most glorious of glorious mornings, although the brisk breeze up there did make positioning the camera for a self-photo a little tricky (near to the edge of the trig point the camera wanted to blow off), hence the following ill-framed photo, with a big chunk of trig-point in the foreground:


Soon, on my way down the other side, with excellent views of my next two objectives,


I was braced for the man-eating bogs that are renowned on the route. There was indeed evidence of bog-sites (the following one scattered with pieces of wood to act as stepping stones and bridges), but today all but a couple of areas were bone dry:


My first pause of the day was had when I came across a man in pain with a knee that was conspiring against his 3 Peaks attempt. Despite his encouragement for me to carry on as he insisted that ‘the clock is ticking’, I had some painkillers and he didn’t, so I dug them out of my pack, cut a couple off the strip and wished him luck before I toddled off down the last bit of the hillside and along the B-road.

Mick was waiting at the parking area by Ribblehead Viaduct when I got there at 0910,


and there I paused for a banana and to top up my water, but with half of my mind on wanting to make sure that I completed the round in the traditional 12 hours (actually, I was rather hoping to achieve 10 hours), it was only ten minutes later when I bade Mick farewell again and strode off to walk up Whernside at a pace that has never before been witnessed when I’ve been walking uphill.

The top was in and out of cloud by the time I got there at 1043 (it was the saviour of the day; contrary to the hot weather forecast, it was actually rather cool on both the way up and the way down), shortly before which I had paused for a chat with a chap and his two young children near the top, but still managed to find myself with the trig-point to myself, so it was another self-timed photo:


I soon dropped below the cloud:


but, my goodness, that first bit of the steep descent is a bit of a killer on the knees!

Having been only marginally waylaid by a couple of chaps who wanted to know about my experience of walking with two poles, the descent took me three quarters of an hour (so not actually as slow as it seemed at the time), and reaching the road it was back into the car for another break and some lunch.

At this point, I was struggling to comprehend that I was already two-thirds of the way through the walk, but that it wasn’t even noon. As fresh as I still felt (something else that also surprised me at this point), I felt sure that my pace would slow considerably on the last hill – particularly as the map seemed to indicate that a couple of sections near the top were going to be quite steep.

Those steep bits were powered by Jelly Babies, but even so, it felt like I was barely making any upwards progress. Perhaps all I really needed was a brief pause to catch my breath, as after a chat with a local couple things didn’t seem quite so bad, and I got onto the summit plateau just as all of its occupants (including 30 school children, their chaperones, and four other walkers) were leaving it.

As well as the weather finally clearing a bit, I seemed to be getting better at the self-timed photos:


A look at the map and a quick calculation told me that, having reached the final summit at 1300, it really was in my grasp to get back to Horton within 9 hours of setting out. Any notion of taking in my surroundings was forgotten as I got all competitive with myself and positively flew past the hoards who were descending (they really must have wondered about my sanity).

With the sun now firmly out and the wind having dropped, it was getting uncomfortably warm, but I was a girl on a mission. More Jelly Babies fuelled an even bigger burst of speed when I passed the ‘Horton 2.75 miles’ marker and realised that, at a push, 8.5 hours was achievable.

IMG_1695 Pen-y-Ghent back in view

‘Last Half Mile Syndrome’ was kicking in, and my knees were starting to ache, as I crossed the railway at the uncommonly well-kept Horton Station:


from where it was but a few hops, a few skips and a few jumps back to my start point. I ploughed on, going as fast as my little legs could carry me without running.

It was 1425 as I walked across the car park in Horton, with Mick doing a double take when he saw me coming. He was my one-man cheering squad as I walked past my start point.


I can’t say that I would ordinarily go for walking over hills at such pace. It’s always nice to be able to take the time to look around and take in the views (not to mention to take the time to cool down on hot days). That said, it was good fun to have a bit of a challenge, and I was chuffed to bits with the end result**.

I was even more chuffed to get out of the car when we got home and find that I could still walk!

(*I wore the GPS all day to record my route and stats, and so that I could keep an eye on my pace. It told me that I was stationary for 53 minutes of the 8.25 hours I had been out. The distance covered was 23.9 miles, but that did include a minor navigational blip (I saw a stile and assumed I needed to go over it, without paying any attention to where I was going – Doh!), and the small detours to meet Mick for elevenses and lunch.

**Undoubtedly the dry underfoot conditions and mainly-excellent visibility helped speed me around.)

Friday, 18 June 2010

Contrasts: Black Hill

When Mick and I tootled up the Pennine Way in 2008 (22/5/08) Black Hill was very black, albeit sprinkled with white pellets of fertiliser as part of a re-greening project. This is how it looked:

Black Hill

What a contrast it is now. This photo was taken yesterday (17/6/10). It seems that the re-greening has been successful:

Black Hll It’s rather pretty now. And you can’t fault that sky, can you?

Bleaklow to Upper Booth

Distance: 11.5 miles

Weather: overcast

Number of mountain hares: 3

Number of lizardy things: 1 (could have been 2, depending on whether other tail I saw disappearing under a rock was a lizardy thing or a snake)

It was just gone a quarter past six this morning (rather earlier than my usual hour) when I left my camping spot and took to the trail again. The weather was decidedly overcast, but still warm enough for most of the walk to be completed in my short sleeves*.

Heat was also being generated by my speed. I was on a mission! Mick had very kindly offered to come and pick me up from Edale, and I had given a ridiculously early estimated time of arrival. I could have revised my estimate, but I was up for a challenge, so along I sped to see how close to that time I could get.

IMG_1645 Approaching Wain Stones (I’d deviated from the Pennine Way to camp, and rejoined it just after Wain Stones)

I still had time to look around me though, and to take a few photos (although the weather conditions weren’t really ideal for getting good views), and I passed a few minutes with a chap who had also opted for an early start, but was heading the other way on his first day of the Way.

IMG_1655 About to hit a layer of low-level cloud, on my way to the Snake Road

At Kinder Downfall (not boasting much liquid falling down today) time was taken for second breakfast and to don an extra layer. The day was still reasonably warm, but there was quite a brisk wind, so as soon as I stopped I cooled quickly.

IMG_1661 The rather dry river bed, looking upstream from Kinder Downfall

I was soon on the go again, and only five minutes later I saw someone else coming towards me, and who should it be but Mick? Perhaps at that point I could have slowed down, as the ETA was irrelevant, but uttering “I want to see if I can make it to Jacob’s Ladder by 10”, I barely broke stride as Mick did an about turn and we trotted along together (me chatting incessantly, but Mick probably expected that!).

We did make it to Jacob’s Ladder by 10, and by 11 we were at Barber Booth, which is where Mick had parked. Given that my objective for the walk was to reach Glossop, I didn’t feel obligated to walk the final couple of miles over to Edale to consider my walk complete, and so without further ado** into the car we got. Ten minutes later, on our way home, it started to rain. Excellent timing, I thought.

And so my FAT*** was over. Excellent fun it was too (I think the weather helped). I rather liked the Pennine Way when we walked it as part of our LEJOG in 2008, but had forgotten quite how nice it is, and that section between Horton and Edale does boast an excellent selection of scenery.

(*Actually, when I say ‘my short sleeves’, I mean Mick’s, because I accidentally picked up Mick’s black short sleeved Icebreaker rather than my own. It’s the problem of having Howard & Hilda kit. As it happens, I found the baggy fit much more comfortable in the conditions.

**That’s not strictly true. If you must know, before I got into the car I looked around to check there was no-one in the immediate vicinity, and dropped my trousers. “Urgh” said Mick. I knew that the bites on my right leg were quite large, but my reaction to them seemed to have increased ten fold since last night. Don’t know what it was that bit me on that leg, but my body doesn’t seem to object so much to whatever bit me on the left leg. That’ll teach me to close my leg vents before sitting on the grass for lunch!

***Football Avoidance Trip)

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Standedge to Bleaklow

Distance: 14.5 miles
Weather: another glorious day!

A less waffly post today - I have a dwindling battery supply and need to make sure I have enough power left to facilitate a lift home tomorrow!

It was a leisurely start to the day, before meeting up with Martin & Sue ( at 9.30 for the walk over to Crowden. I knew that Crowden was where I was going to stop because I distinctly remember saying so to Martin earlier in the week...

It was Martin who pointed out the possibility of going straight on at Black Moss Reservoir. It was an alternative to repeating a bit of route I've done before so that's what we did, approaching Black Hill from the NW (with only a small amount of yomping required - glad the weather's been dry).

Black Hill was noticeably greener than it was 2 years ago, when it was scattered with seed.

Between Black Hill and Laddow Rocks an exceptionally tasty lunch was had (huge thanks go to Martin and Sue for said tasty lunch - it was very much appreciated). Then we had our feet filmed (wonder what that footage is going to be used for?!) as we passed by the scene of a mountain rescue incident. Helicopter personnel were already on the scene, and over the next half an hour many MRT chaps passed us, rushing to the rescue.

Arriving at the foot of Laddow Rocks, my mind was made up that I couldn't face and entire afternoon sitting in the tent at what is, by reputation, a very midgey campsite. It was only 3pm and that gave a lot of hours to sit in a hot tent on a sunny day.

I would instead continue to Glossop - another long day - and end my walk there.

The plan changed when I spotted a lovely grassy area alongside a lovely stream a few miles later.

So, it was a short day today after all, but ending in a much more pleasing place than Crowden Campsite. Another day of excellent scenery too, under more stunning skies, and made better still by good company.

Definitely a short day tomorrow. I'm not walking beyond Edale!
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Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Colden to Standedge

Distance: 18ish miles
Weather: as sunny as sunny can be
Number of killer poodles: 1 (standard, not toy!)
Number of overly inquisitive sheep: 10 (6+2+2)
Number of comedy falls: 1

It's unsurprising, after yesterday's efforts, that I slept well last night, disturbed only by some yobs chanting at full voice (thankfully some distance away) between 1.30 and 2am. Maybe they went on longer - I slept the rest of the night with my audio book blocking out other noises.

"How can it be morning already" I wondered as my alarm went off, but I managed to drag myself out of bed, finding that my muslces had recovered overnight and I felt fine. The feeling fine lasted until I nipped behind the tent to take a photo of it with Stoodley Pike in the distance, and fell over the end guy in a true comedy style (straight down - no arms out to break the fall). A rather bruised knee ensued.

The eight tents unlawfully pitched beside Golden Water, together with the remains of a number of bbqs and a very large scattering of beer bottles, cans and general rubbish may have been the explanation of last night's disturbance, but all was quiet as I walked through. Perhaps I should have treated them to a few football chants of my own?

The walk up to Stoodley Pike was delightful, being mainly shaded, and it was at the monument that Steve caught up with me. We first met when we were pitched next to each other at Gargrave and since have been doing a hare and tortoise act. My natural pace is a tiny bit quicker than Steve's, but he doesn't stop or faff. So, every time I'm just picking my pack up after a break, Steve catches up with me and we walk together a while until my pace picks back up again.

A sign-post saying "White House 2 3/4 miles" saw me put an extra spurt on, as it made me hear a pint of shandy calling my name, and today I was blessed with the pub not only still being in business, but also being open. Oh that drink tasted good and cool interior of the pub was a nice break for my rather pink arms.

The scariest two minutes of my entire walking career came a while later. I had no idea that motorway foot bridges, which are terrifying at the best of times become so much more terrifying when you haven't got someone with you ridiculing your terror. It probably didn't help that the bridge in question is about a thousand feet high and about eight miles long, and the cars underneath are doing about 300 miles an hour ... or at least that's how it seemed for those 2 minutes.
I recovered my senses with oat cakes and sardines half way up White Hill, finding that once again the stop in the hot conditions had caused all of my energy to desert me.

I did, of course, eventually drag myself back to my feet and the rest of the afternoon was just as superb as the morning, with stunningly clear views and even more reservoirs with dwindling water levels.

Powered by chocolate, the kilometre along the verge of the A62 was completed, and now I'm at The Carriage House, where after last year's experience I didn't think I would return. I'm hoping that a Wednesday in June will prove to be more peaceful than a Saturday in July!

So, another excellent day completed. Tomorrow's just a short one.

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Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Gargrave to Colden

Distance: 24.5 miles
Weather: glorious and stupidly hot to be walking that far!
Number of other PW walkers seen: 6

Whatever possessed me to walk that far on a day as hot as today?! I'm not sure that's a question that can be answered, but here's how it happened:

The day started quite normally really. By 7.15 I was walking and I wasn't even delayed much by the Co-op, choosing my groceries in record time, so without much ado I left Gargrave.

The early morning was a game of 'spot the stile' as farmland was the theme - a contrast to yesterday's spectacular scenery, but pleasing nevertheless. Chats were had with any number of cows which I needed to move from my path.

Farmland gave way to more open land, making the way-finding easier, and after a vast amount of upness (or so it felt) the hour was gone noon and so I found the shade of a tree next to a stream to have a good lunch break.

The afternoon didn't start with promise. It seemed that someone had snuck lead weights in each of my shoes whilst I'd had them off at lunch. And I was tired - so very tired that it was sorely tempting to just lie down at the side of the path for a snooze.

Over the moor-of-the-sheds-with-chimney-breasts I went (wish I'd taken a photo with my phone; I'll add one when I get home) at a remarkably slow pace - not helped by the fact that 90% of that moor is uphill (or so it seemed).

When finally I did start to descend, a decision was made: I was low on water, I was tired and I was moving too slowly - the only sensible thing to do was to stop at Ponden House for the night.

With only a short distance left to go, I dawdled some more; I even stopped a few times.

Then I ran out of water, which was perplexing, because my bag was awfully heavy if I'd drunk all of my water (a kink in my water tube was the answer, as I later found).

And then after all of that time-wasting, I got to Ponden House to find that it was only 2.30. I couldn't quite bring myself to stop at such an early hour and from somewhere (perhaps the sugary flapjack I'd just eaten) I found the energy to think that I could make it to Colden, just outside Hedben Bridge - another 8.5 miles.

With sweat still pouring off me and the sun still beating down, I started to question my sanity. Moreover when bits of me really started to protest. By then, I didn't have much option: I didn't have enough water to camp and none of the murky-brown streams were enticing me to use them.

At 1745 I rejoiced to find myself outside of High Gate Farm in Colden (free camping and a spectacular little shop), where an ice cream revived me enough to pitch the tent.

Later I may find the energy to walk back across to the shop (thirty paces away, at most), to buy some supplies for the next 3 days.

As for tomorrow, having completed half of the journey in the first two days, I can say with certainty that it will be shorter than today!

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Not a bad day!

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Monday, 14 June 2010

Horton-in-Ribblesdale to Gargrave

Distance: 19.5 miles
Weather: AM: runny nose weather; PM: fair and warm
Number of eagles possibly seen: 1
Number of freakily coincidental encounters: 1

With the train running just a few minutes late, it was just after 10 that I found myself walking through Horton, which turned out to be the exact same time that everyone else who was setting off from there for a walk today got going.

My heart sank as I found myself heading towards Pen-y-Ghent behind one group of a couple of dozen people, as I know how hard it can be to pass big groups (assumings, of course, that I would be moving faster than they were).

I was right in amongst them, chatting to a lady from Rotherham, when the eagle was spotted. That it was an eagle was the consensus of all of those around me, and that's perhaps not as far fetched as it may seem if I disclose that it was being flown by a falconer. All I can say for certain is that it was a mightily big bird of prey.

At the first gateway of the day a group-faff allowed me the opportunity to get ahead, so with many a nod and a hello, that's what I did.

I did try to maintain a sensible pace but, in the absence of my pacemaker, failed, and so it wasn't long before I was puffing up to the shoulder of PyG and turning down to the road.

The weather obviously hadn't heeded its forecast, as a wind-blown drizzle set itself up and didn't (as I had expected) blow through in a few minutes. After half an hour, I finally conceded that I was quite wet and getting cold with it, and decided that the best tactic to get the rain to stop was to don my waterproof trousers. Sure enough, it wasn't much longer before the dampness started to abate.

Happily, by the time I'd got to the top of the climb on Fountains Fell the cloud had finally lifted and the day was showing promise. Having not seen the views from the top before (it was fully in cloud last time I was there) that was a treat.

By the time I reached the limestone pavement above Malham Cove, it was fine and warm, which made it seem like a sensible place to have lunch.

The first contender for my night-stop was Malham, but as I sat there looking down on the campsite I concluded that, as early as it was, I may as well continue and push on for Gargrave.

Down the massive stone staircase I went, and through the hoards around the cove, thence into the village, where I made a bit of a meal of finding the path out the other side.

It was just as I was wandering about, head in the map, thinking 'I'm sure it was that last turn and I'll feel quite silly when I have to do an about turn', when a chap ran over to me and hailed me by name.
It was Jeff (Trentham Walker), and by complete co-incidence our paths had crossed as he (plus friend Geoff) are walking the Dales Highway(ish) this week. What are the chances, eh? And if I hadn't just overshot my turn by twenty yards, I wouldn't have walked past them.

Half an hour was spent chatting in the warm sunshine until, with the clock striking 4 I had to accept that if I was going to reach Gargrave at a sensible hour, I really needed to get going.

I must have flown those last miles and two hours later into the campsite I wandered, where I'm now pitched with two other Pennine Way walkers.

So, not a bad day at all to start my walk, with reasonable weather and incredibly nice scenery. I wonder where tomorrow will take me?

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On My Way

"Can I borrow Connie?" I asked Mick the day after he took delivery of her.

He pouted a bit at the thought of his new tent having her first outing with someone other than himself, but when I volunteered that I was equally happy to take Wendy he kindly agreed to relinquish Connie into my care for a week.

"Can I borrow your Exos?" came next.

"My X-Socks?!" said Mick, a little perplexed.

I enunciated a little more clearly, adding a backpack wearing sort of a mime.

He thought a while.

"Do you just want to go as me?"

That was a couple of weeks ago, when my football-avoidance plan first started to form, ably aided by itchy feet after a week of being at home.

Next came consideration of where to go. The destination had to be somewhere reasonably easy to get to and from, with 4 or 5 days of walking in between, and somewhere that Mick didn't have a great hankering to go (the sulking would have been great indeed if I'd gone off to walk somewhere we already have intentions of walking together).

The Southern Upland Way was my first thought. With my nervousness about camping unlawfully (moreover by myself), Scotland seemed like the obvious choice. I plotted a route between Stranraer and Sanquhar (both of which have railway stations), found it was a perfect length to fit my plans and sorted out where I could spend each night, with a good mix of campsites and wild pitches.

Then I looked at the train fares and went back to the drawing board.

Glyndwr's Way was my next thought and a route was again plotted. Transport was easy enough, and cheap too. The only problem was the lack of campsites and the farmland of mid-Wales didn't strike me as the friendliest location for a nervous wild-camper to try to secrete herself at such a light time of year.

The Lakes was briefly considered and rejected, as was Snowdonia, even though both would have been easy from a camping point of view.

Then an idea struck me. It's not novel; in fact it's quite a lazy option really, but it ticked all of the boxes - and even Mick was happy with it.

So, I'm now sitting on a train heading east from Halifax. At Leeds I shall change trains and direction. If all runs smoothly, then at 10am I will be out walking - and contrary to my usual detailed-itinerary style of planning, I don't yet know my destination for the day. We'll see how it goes and how far I get.
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Saturday, 12 June 2010

More Uninteresting Walking

It is the 12th of June today, and so far this month I’ve been out for 11 walks – not one of which merited* being written about. Most of them have been pretty short too, as evidenced by the sharp drop off of the ‘mile by month’ graph for the year to date:


There’s an even steeper drop-off on the ascent chart:


All is not lost for the month. Plans are afoot and if all goes to plan the charts will look much healthier by the end of next week (as should the Blog, as I will be blogging as I go).

(*Actually, I could probably have strung a few words together about a couple of them, but didn’t quite muster enough enthusiasm to do so.)

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Contrast (2)

K2CW Day 4: at around 4.30pm we arrived at the Travelodge just outside of Dartford. Within 60 seconds of entering our room, Mick took this photo:

Day 4 13Four minutes later, he took this photo, showing the kit explosion that had occurred (I particularly like the evidence of me in repose, so soon after entering the room!):

Day 4 14

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Contrast (1)

K2CW: Day 50

On the day that (I think) involved more road walking than any other day of the trip, we were walking along the A890 between Balnacra and Achnashellach.

To our left was the ugly scar of ex-forest:

Day 49 14

By contrast, immediately to our right the view was about as attractive as they come:

Day 49 15

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Who Stole The Water?

We've just been for a stroll around Ogden Water, near Halifax.

Last time we were there was the week after easter (we walked past on our way to Cape Wrath), at which point it was full.

I've seen it low before, but not anywhere near as low as it is at the moment. I guess that's what happens when it doesn't rain for weeks

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Mick's New Toy

She arrived yesterday, but the weather prevented the first pitching taking place until today.

So, in Ma-in-Law's back garden, Connie Competition (as she has been named) got her first airing, and I don't think he made too bad a job of pitching her, albeit it's going to take a bit more practice to get a really good pitch.

The photo show's Mick's mom making suitable appreciative noises, whilst Mick is inside demonstrating how much room there is internally for a person of his size.

Big thanks go to Jeff (Trentham Walker) for pointing out the bargain. Mick's wanted one of these for a very long time; now all he needs to do is plan some solo trips...
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