Walk completed August 28, 2011

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Day 32 -- Knighton to Craven Arms -- 14 official miles, but 16 by my route

Sheep obstrucing footbridge
A lovely Saturday should bring out the walkers, and as I left Knighton, there were quite a number. But they must have been walking on Offa’s Dyke, because I saw only one group of walkers the entire day.
About an hour out of Knighton, I called Dr. George and Lady Ann from the middle of a pasture. They had just returned to England from Utah, via Toronto. I’m looking forward to seeing them when I get to northern England in another 3 weeks.

Birmingham family
Curious horses
My route departed from the national trail, and instead linked a number of local footpaths to carry me over hills, over dales, over all the dusty trails, but there wasn’t even a caisson, let alone other hikers, except for a family from Birmingham with whom I shared the trail for about 15 minutes.

Because I was not hiking on a national trail, the signage is not very good, and once again my superb route-finding abilities were called into play. You’ll be happy to know that I got lost – really lost – only once all day. Well, twice if you count the little ten-minute detour, but I’m not counting it because I was on a parallel track in a thick forest.

But the time I got really lost was on the top of a hill, also in a thick forest. I wasn’t even near the track I should have been on. So, after figuring out where I was, I fought back the tears and the urge to call 999 (the British emergency number), and sat down and said to myself, “How in the hell do you figure you’re gonna get yourself out of this fix?” Despite the predicament, I felt a sudden surge of relief when I remembered Janet wasn’t with me.

Working with the map in one hand, the GPS in another and my hiking sticks in another, I devised a route that would get me back to where I should be. It was only a 2 mile detour. I was still happy Janet wasn’t with me – she really hates it when I get us lost, and she would not have been a happy companion today, even though the weather was fine.

When I was on route -- trail passes through front yard
My legs must be getting stronger, because despite the distance and the route-finding delays, I arrived at my B&B at 5:15. I should be a McDonald’s commercial, because I’m loving it.

© 2011 Ken Klug

1 comment:

  1. It's a good thing you'll be seeing Dr George soon, growing a 3rd hand is definitely not normal! 16 miles and still wanting to do a McDonald commercial, that's awesome.
    Have fun