Sunday, 30 April 2017

Testing, Testing…

Laura and I had an opportunity, the last opportunity before the Challenge, to walk together, so we took it.

We originally planned to meet in Aberlour, but as the weather was not playing ball, plans changed and I drove to Laura’s. On arrival, we chatted a while. After quite some time, we looked out of the window and decided to carry on chatting. After some more time, we decided we were just taking advantage and that the weather was in fact improving, if we didn’t get out and walk it would be too late! We left the house.

We parked in Aberlour, not where we had originally planned, had the obligatory faff, and set off uphill (why?!!) We continued round and uphill on this road until it eventually turned into a track. We stayed on this track until it turned into a path having an identity crises, it definitely thought it was a burn. Or a river. But all this was good practice and felt remarkably Challenge like, except for the lightness of our packs


Metalled lane


View across farmland to Ben Rinnes, with a little bit of remaining snow


Winding track through the birch trees, before its identity crisis…

We continued up through forestry and birch woods until we popped out the other side and downhill, through a gate and stopped by the bench that Laura had promised me, where we sat and ate lunch gazing towards Dufftown and the hills of Glenfiddich Forest beyond.


The Lunch Bench


Laura, poised for lunch


The view over Dufftown and the Glenfiddich Forrest hills.

We enjoyed a pleasant lunch, sheltered from the cool breeze by the birch woods behind us, then we set off on the return leg. Once we hit the tarmac, we became aware of the weather, slowly tracking us down. We were glad to be heading downhill and therefore at a good pace. The rain started just as we reached the van and piled in.


…let’s get back to the van!!

What a great little walk, thanks Laura, thoroughly enjoyed some ‘proper’ walking for the first time in a few weeks, and I think we’re both ‘fit’ and ready for the Challenge. Bring it on!

Roughly 6.52 miles and 1,135 ft total ascent, a good ‘test’.

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