Walk completed August 28, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Day 51 – Newbiggin to Westgate – 8 miles

After a rather comical effort at my trying to pack a small rucksack, Ann drove George and me to the trailhead. My effort was comical because for 50 days I’ve carried everything with me. On those few days that I didn’t need to carry everything, I merely chose from what was spread about my room. Today, I didn’t need to carry most things, but the items I needed to carry were scattered around Ann’s and George’s home to dry after yesterday’s soaking. It’s one thing to place everything you own in a pack, being confident that if you need something you have it. But today, my boots were in one room, drying near the radiator. The insoles were elsewhere. The GPS and camera were in a basket containing various loose items, and my waterproof jacket was hanging in a different room. I finally got it all together – including lunch – and had my pack in the trunk of the car all ready to go. (In Britain, the trunk is the boot, but the boots were on my feet, so I’ve used the American term. For you Canadians, I know Canada is in America, but I don’t know whether you have trunks or boots, so please cut me some slack.)

In any case, Ann was ready to drive off when I remembered that my map was in a different room – and not in my pocket. A map is always useful when walking in unfamiliar territory, so my Keystone Kops saga continued. I’m not going to explain that reference if you don’t know it. Trust me – it’s comedic.

Bridge over River Tees --
proof I closed the gap
(this is not Photoshopped)
Ann dropped George and me off in the village of Newbiggin, which is on the route to High Force, but not quite on the trail which James and I walked yesterday. To be true to the walk, I had to close the gap by walking a quarter mile from Newbiggin to a footbridge crossing the Tees to join the trail walked yesterday. Then George and I turned around, walked back to Newbiggin and made the 8 mile walk to Westgate.

George and Ann
practicing after-walk rehydration
George is well known for his cycling prowess, but he is yet to develop a reputation as a walker. He had a good start today, because he didn’t complain once on the 4 mile steady climb to the highest ridge. Well, to be honest, he didn’t complain twice. And he didn’t complain twice about the long, steep descent on the other side of the ridge. He may become a walker before I leave next week, but I’m a little concerned about his wanting to take a rest day tomorrow.

© 2011 Ken Klug

1 comment:

  1. Well at least you are walking with George and going back to a nice meal and Ann's lovely smile! Keep the comic relief coming!