Finally, after it was beginning to feel like we’d never see the back of winter, spring appears to have arrived. OK, so there’s been the odd cold, wet back-slip-to-February kind of day here and there, but increasingly the sun has shone and temperatures have been creeping up – first into double figures, then breaking the 20°C barrier.
Along with the obvious signs of spring, May has also heralded the beginning of a busy summer season of walking, and the trips we have been planning throughout the long, dark winter months are getting steadily nearer. Routes have been researched, plans have been made, and gear has been bought: all of which will bear fruit in the months to come.
Besides this, we have stepped up the walking, coped with a draining time at work and been involved in several family-and-friend commitments, the result of which has been a busy few weeks – hence this summary rather than detailed posts on a route-by-route basis.
Since Easter, we have concentrated in topping up our walking fitness in readiness for the treks to come – 8 to 12 miles every other weekend (a typical winter schedule) is not the same as the 15 to 20 miles per day on consecutive days that we will need to be doing. Mostly, this has taken the form of some local circuits to get some miles in our legs, coupled with a few longer ‘training’ walks to add time on our feet and a few hills to the mix.
The good thing is that the effort seems to have paid off. Last weekend we did the second of two jaunts over the Long Mynd and back again (about 13.25 miles each time, and the source of the accompanying photographs) with no discernable difficulty, even though we felt a bit tired and our energy levels seemed low right from the outset.