Having had to recycle my old, faithful pair of walking boots, this latest hike saw me breaking my new ones in. I was probably (definitely) too ambitious with the distance I'd planned for, but that aside, events also taught me another lesson.
Once I have decided upon my route, I've been photocopying A4 sized sheets of the relevant section of my OS map, and only taking those copies with me. On this particular hike, I missed a mid-field turn off, which resulted in me heading West for further than planned.... and ultimately I 'came off' my map.
Now I could have re-traced my steps - that's always the golden rule. But I calculated that if I could head south for a kilometer or so, I'd find myself back onto my second photocopied sheet. In the end, I stumbled across a very inviting country pub. By this point, the bottom of my legs, above the ankles where the boot-tops reach, were aching. The stiff new boots had actually bruised my legs, and rather than soldier on and cause myself misery on my subsequent walks, I went for a pint and got Esta to come and get me. Besides, we had a family event planned too, and me walking on would also have caused some timing problems.
So, having walked 14km in new boots, and having also learned that I need the whole OS map in my backpack as a backup to my disposable copies, I capitulated to circumstance and enjoyed a beer in the early October sunshine.
One time soldier, part-time author, full-time training manager, husband and father.