Back in the 1970s I made a promise to myself to one day walk the pennine Way. It wasn`t until the mid 80s before I found the time to do it all in one trip, I also remember thinking it would be a breeze, which of course it wasn`t. I gave myself two weeks, time enough for most people travelling in the traditional manner, using bed and Breakfast or youth hostel hospitality to dry out, enjoy hot meals and a warm bed for the night. Being the thrifty fellow I am I chose the rather less salubrious option of camping wherever I could, for free. I hadn`t walked anything like this distance before, and didn’t even own a decent pair of boots. All my equipment (with the exception of my stove) was to say the least; rudimentary. It was modest yet adequate, it also weighed so much it made me wonder, how ever was I going to carry it all for the best part of three hundred miles.
I had been on shorter excursions, taken to much & thought I`d learned sufficiently from the experience, not to carry more than was sensible, like `binoculars`, taking this rather weighty accessory on a previous trip, found them filled with mist, ( like they had their own micro climate ) and useless. I still had around 40 pounds or (18 kilos) in my rucksack and more about my body, which became something of an anchor as the trip advanced, it took three days before I realized I should jettison surplus equipment to lighten the load, sadly it didn`t make much difference as I needed most of it to survive. The official start was Edale and I was determined to walk the whole way, whatever the consequences; (there were many). It was a great experience and my memories of it are the best, I cherish them to this day and intend to go back soon to rekindle those memories and this time I will take more pictures.
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“I went To The Hills & They Welcomed Me”