When I finally talked myself in to gearing up for the TGOC 2012, one of things I realised was that I would need to get comfortable walking in all conditions. It can be very easy to cherry pick those perfect sunny days, when the snow is crunchy underfoot, and ignore the claggy, wet, nothing days. On the Challenge that won't be possible, hence my determination to get out whatever.
Yesterday was a prime example. I'm a self-employed window cleaner, not my dream job, but then who has one of those? I went to work yesterday morning, stuck it out until about 1, then realised that no matter how much I hoped, it wasn't going to stop raining. So, an opportunity to get walking appears. Do I take it, and spend two or three hours trudging in the rain, or do I spend a pleasant afternoon in the pub, drinking Doom Bar and reading WH Murray's autobiography? Hmm...
Well, waterproofs on, boots on, off we go. Up out of Cheltenham towards Leckhampton Hill, in to Daisybank Road and then sharp right up the footpath beside the Tramway Cottage. A short steep climb to the ruins of the old lime kilns, and then track round on the path through the woods under the Devil's Chimney. The path finally pops out of the woods and in to the weather, hood fastened nice and tight and then turn in to the wind towards the trig point. From here follow the edge of the escarpment to the path that descends towards Sandy Lane, down that and on to the lane which is heavily eroded after all the rain. Slip and slide down this until I hit tarmac and then walk back through Cox's Meadow and Sandford Park to town. 6.5 miles maybe, just over two and a quarter hours and time well spent I reckon.
So grotty weather = training time! A Silver Lining!