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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Coast to Coast nominated 2nd best walk in the World

It is indeed a very good walk. Challenging both in physical (walking) and mental (route finding, planning, and navigation) aspects. Being my first long walk, I can't compare it to others of similar stature (note that the Milford Sound walk that won first place is only a 4 day walk!). All I can say is that we chose this walk because:
  1. Lugguage service is available. It's not available on any of America's thru-hikes, for instance, or in America's National Parks.
  2. The luxury accomodations en-route makes the daily walk easier to bear. We stayed at many fabulous places and met many friendly people.
  3. It's in an English speaking country. The comraderie of the people you meet will encourage you, and give you friendly faces to see all through your journey. The fact that everyone speaks English means that you'll have meaningful, deep conversations should you desire it.
  4. It does provide a lovely cross-section of the country. At the end of the trip, our impressions were of beautiful mountains, lovely lakes, quiet forests, farmlands, fields, and lonely wind-swept moors that were truly wind-swept and lonely. It was a shock to come back to Manchester and discover that England had people, not just sheep and cows.
The downsides were:
  1. Unpredictable weather. We hit lovely weather, so we're not complaining, though I did get caught in a downpour.
  2. Trails overlaid with loose stones. It made for lots of sore feet.
  3. Expensive. It cost us about $4000 in total to do the trip (including plane tickets), making it by far the most expensive trip I've ever done.
  4. Lack of navigational aids. This is truly a trip to test your ability to navigate (or use a GPS).
All in all, I'm very glad I did the trip. It's definitely a once in a lifetime experience, and I can't wait for the 21 rolls of slide film that I sent off to come back. I'm afraid I'm now addicted to Old Peculier...

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