Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘walk1000miles’

Lockdown and the government tiers certainly doesn’t allow for much by way of exploring, except in your local vicinity. If you’re lucky enough to live in a countryside area, close to the sea, or near a river, even if its familiar its usually different and can still be enjoyed every day.

Hands and Molecules – a familiar and favourite sculpture on the clifftop – makes a good frame for the moon
I adore this house. Located near the King George VI Memorial Park on the Dumpton Gap side, I used to have house envy till I realised how close to the cliff edge it is πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ

I live (sort of*) near the sea and even though it’s the same, every day along the coast is different. I’ve found myself with time on my hands due to losing a 6 week assignment so made the most of the opportunity to spend time with my grandson and to catch up on my walking targets for 2020.

Sunrise 23.11.20 @ 7.15am
Sunrise 23.11.20 @ 7.26am
Ramsgate Harbour
Into the light….
Sunrise 25.11.20 @ 9.26am
Sunset 24.11.20
Sunset 23.11.20
My favourite sunset to date…23.11.20 across Pegwell Bay
Sunset from the cliffs above Pegwell Bay near Cliffsend
One of my favourite village signboards – Cliffsend has seen Viking raiders, St Augustine’s arrival and WW2 action

I’ve seen some amazing sunrises and sunsets and had much fun with the kid. He’s developing into a very determined little boy and like most kids his age, he has a strong will. He’s also growing rapidly and requires his Granny to carry him when he gets tired….but Granny is not a bodybuilder and has her limits 😁😁

My favourite swing…he loves it too
Finding a fairy’s front door πŸ§šβ€β™‚οΈπŸ§šβ€β™€οΈ
He’s going to be a displacement officer when he grows up πŸ˜‰πŸ˜ loves to move stuff
Empathy for a dead shark
Just a hop, skip and jump on the beach at Margate

I’ve mostly walked locally and managed a walk to Broadstairs and to the Sandwich side of the Pegwell Bay nature reserve.

Looking across the saltmarsh mudflats to Ramsgate
The saltmarsh mudflats, a fascinating environment

The mudflats are home to an incredible number of birdlife that visit here during the changing seasons

The reserve has an amazing history and played an important role in WW2.

On my way back from the nature reserve I walked along the beach beneath the cliffs; devastated to see the volume of plastic trash lining the high tide level and he number of dogshit bags piled up. It’ll take a team of 20-30 people to clear that up…it stretched from where I’m standing right along the cliffs; heartbreaking.

We’ve had a couple of family outings and made a special trip for the boobee to see the Christmas lights in Margate

Snowman!! Penguin!! Santa!! His vocabulary is expanding daily πŸ₯°πŸ₯°

Ramsgate Harbour offers so many photographic opportunities, you could spend all day there

I’ve managed to increase my kms by 74 this week and passed my original target of 1600kms. I do however still have 375km to walk to reach my 2020 target of 2020kms. Looking forward to seeing if I’ve exceeded my October total πŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

I’m determined to reach my target

So yeah, I may be walking familiar routes, but every day it looks different.

* I sort of live in Ramsgate but because work all over the country I don’t actually have a home and liveineither a guest house or b&b between assignments. One day…I hope to have a home of my own.

Read Full Post »

Absolutely delighted to have completed the Ring of Kerry virtual challenge tonight.

After I’d updated my Conqueror app kms last night I found I only had 1.1km left to complete the challenge. So tonight after I got back from visiting the kids, I went for a short walk along the clifftop and 1.6km later, I’m done.

Challenge #5 in the bag. For someone who said she was only going to do one….😁😁😁🀭🀭

Total 1194.7kms

A cheap way to travel the world. πŸ˜‰

Congratulations, you have completed Ireland’s well known scenic route the Ring of Kerry. Before you leave spend a little more time in Killarney by visiting the historical site of the 15th century Ross Castle.

Overlooking the third largest lake in Ireland, called Lough Leane, the castle was built by the local ruling clan, O’Donoghues MΓ³r. Ross Castle was one of the last castles in Ireland to surrender to Cromwell’s forces. Up until the 17th century the castle was surrounded by a curtain wall with towers in each corner. A portion of the curtain wall was torn down to make way for expansion whilst in use as a barracks. Today the castle is open to visitors, retaining the tower house, part of the curtain wall and two towers.

From the castle take a boat ride on the lake to Innisfallen Island, the home to the ruins Innisfallen Abbey. Founded in 640 AD by St Finian, the patron saint of the area, it was occupied for nearly a thousand years. Nothing remains from that early settlement. The current ruins are a late 12th century Augustinian Priory. Over a few hundred years the resident monks wrote the famed Annals of Innisfallen, a chronicle of Ireland’s medieval history. In the late 16th century during Queen Elizabeth I’s reign, the monks were dispossessed of their abbey.

An excerpt from Thomas Moore’s poem entitled Sweet Innisfallen (c1870) describes it best:

Sweet Innisfallen, fare thee well,
May calm and sunshine long be thine!
How fair thou art let other tell,
To feel how fair shall long be mine.
Sweet Innisfallen, long shall dwell
In memory’s dream that sunny smile,
Which o’er thee on that evening fell,
When first I saw thy fairy isle…

It’s so easy to get discouraged these days what with lockdown and various crazy things happening in the world, so for me this has been a fun way to keep motivated, and even when I really don’t feel like getting out, the thought of adding kms to my challenge gets me out the house.

I love the milestone postcards we get and the information that comes with them. The plant a tree initiative is fantastic and its exciting to know that my walking challenges have planted 25 trees so far

Virtually – anything is possible

If you’d like to join me on these virtual challenges, you can sign up here via my link.

https://www.theconqueror.events/r/CE1474

This is not an affiliate link and I don’t make any money from people signing up, but you get a 10% discount on any walks you sign up for and I think I get a 10% discount as well….which is a moot point really since I’ve already signed up for all the walks I want to do πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ, although that’s no guarantee and I’m pretty certain that if they bring out more challenges, I’ll sign up 🀣🀣🀣

What’s next you might ask….well I’ve 477.7km to walk to complete my personal challenge of 2020kms in 2020, and next on the horizon is the Great Ocean Road, Australia and Alps to Ocean, NZ. Next year I’ll be walking the Cabot Trail, Canada and the Ring Road, Iceland.

Hope they bring out a 2021 challenge too.

Read Full Post »

My very 1st postcard along the Ring of Kerry arrived yesterday πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ

This is one of the features about the Conqueror Virtual Challenges that I enjoy the most….

Charlie Chaplin- Waterville, Ireland

Waterville

Between Ballinskelligs Bay and Lough Currane (lake) on a narrow isthmus lies the coastal village of Waterville. Flanked by two championship 18-hole golf courses, one to the north and the other to the south, this small town of 496 residents is a bundle of surprises.

Waterville began as a village in the 1800s and although it remains a small village, you will never be short of something outdoorsy to do. There’s a plethora of walking and cycling routes with both easy and difficult levels. The Equestrian Centre conducts pony camps, horsemanship courses and beach rides. The Sea Synergy is a marine awareness and activity centre, with their main objective to educate about marine life and ocean conservation. Operated by marine biologist and ecologists, the organisation runs educational adventure tours and summer camps for kids and teens.

A walk on the promenade will bring you to a statue of Charlie Chaplin who enjoyed Waterville so much that for a decade he returned every year for holidays with his family. Obtaining permission from the Charlie Chaplin estate, Waterville hosts the annual Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival.

When the first transatlantic cable was installed in 1858 between Newfoundland Canada and Valentia Island near Waterville it didn’t come without its problems. Working for a mere three weeks due to weak cables, it took five further attempts across nine years to eventually succeed in maintaining a lasting connection. The Atlantic Telegraph Co. had a monopoly over the industry and as a result the Commercial Cable Company from New York was established to break the monopoly and reduce prices by successfully installing cables in 1884 from Waterville to Nova Scotia. This brought a hive of activity into the village and the need for more housing to accommodate company personnel who settled in the area. Waterville became the European hub for the Company and at its peak was the largest cable station in the world.

Its so interesting to read about places on the actual route of the virtual route I’m following. I lived in Ireland for 6 months back in 2001/2002 and we travelled the country extensively. It helped that my sister and her husband lived there at the time, and loved travelling as much as I did. I went back a few years later (one of 8 trips) and we travelled to Galway and Conamarra where we enjoyed a fantastic holiday. Afterwards my friend and I hired a car and travelled right along the west coast, the south coast and the east coast back to Dublin over 7 days. Along the way we drove along part of the Ring of Kerry and it is stunning. I’d love to go back now, or as soon as, and walk the actual route.

But for now I shall content myself with the virtual postcards and the information that accompanies it, while I explore and walk around England.

If you’d like to join me on these virtual challenges, you can sign up here via my link.

https://www.theconqueror.events/r/CE1474

This is not an affiliate link and I don’t make any money from people signing up, but you get a 10% discount on any walks you sign up for and I think I get a 10% discount as well….which is a moot point really since I’ve already signed up for all the walks I want to do πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ

Read Full Post »

Hoorah! Today’s walk was fruitful albeit shorter than usual. Not only did I finally find the blessed Egrets Way path after going off in COMPLETELY the wrong direction πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ and wasting 45 minutes of my break in the process (Passing the railway station should have been a clue…πŸ€”πŸ€”),

But I am once again a ‘Trail blazer’ However, whilst it may appear that I’m a trail blazer, I wish I could tell them how useless I am at reading Google maps, especially when the map moves as I turn my phone to see which way to go🀨😠

And my mileage reached 40% on the Ring of Kerry virtual challenge and so another tree will be planted.

As for the toads crossing, I wonder what happened to the fast toads… 🐸🐸🐸

Alls well that ends well…and another day bites the dust. I only have 7.5 days to go and I’m off, back to Ramsgate. Can’t wait to see my Boobee

This adorable, funny, gorgeous little guy who holds my heart in his hands – my Boobee

His nickname came about from 2 sources….he has loved playing peek-a-boo from when he was tiny, so I started calling him Boo, and now he says “boo” which is just so cute I could eat him…. Meanwhile his parents have been teaching him sign language as a tool for better communication with people who have no hearing. He learned the sign for bee 🐝 and it was so cute I kept asking him to sign it….and one day, I got all muddled when playing with him and called him ‘Boobee’. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚β˜Ίβ˜Ί so now he’s my special special Boobee…..aka The Blur because he’s never still for one second and I can seldom get a photo of him that isn’t blurred….his Mummy, who sent me this photo, has the same problem…our phone cameras are just not fast enough to capture him in one place ☺☺

He’s a charm; funny, smart, cute, humorous, outgoing, friendly, loves Peppa Pig madly and is just adorable. I am so blessed to have him in my life.

Some other random photos from today, not as interesting as usual as my 6.84km walk wasn’t either….

Read Full Post »

Walking never fails to throw up a few surprises and today was no exception.

It poured with rain this morning and I thought for sure my plan to walk during my break was scuppered. But by early afternoon the clouds blew away (mostly) and the sun shone bright and by 3pm it was lovely and sunny, albeit very windy.

I decided that today was the day to walk along that disused railway line, and I’m ever so glad I did….there was a delightful surprise in store.

Looking back towards the town from the entrance

It’s a beautiful walk, hundreds of trees create a green tunnel with crispy autumn leaves underfoot, and of course….lots of muddy puddles.

I did some ‘Paul Simon’ as I walked and as usual thanked my walking poles for keeping me upright 😁😁😁 Of course it had rained, ya dim woman. What a day to choose. But never no mind, on I plodded…slip sliding away…the nearer my destination….

About halfway along I noticed a beautiful towering Victorian bridge and just beneath that a group of 6 people standing about. Not at all sure what was waiting ahead, I tried to look confident and in control…as I neared the group I could hear singing

To my delight the group of people was a small choir practising for a concert and enjoying the acoustics provided by the bridge!! They were grouped around a brightly burning fire dancing merrily, it looked utterly cosy and I felt quite envious

Magic.

I stopped to listen to listen and they kindly agreed to my recording it ☺☺ the sound was amazing. After saying my thanks for the impromptu concert, I carried on along the path right to the end and passed a 2nd bridge along the way, but sadly, no further choirs….

As I neared the end of that wide green green tunnel narrowed suddenly and petered out into a narrow path amongst bushes. The whole length of that section of the railway line is 1.216kms 😁

Uninviting…

Walking back I was hoping to hear the group singing again but unfortunately as I neared the bridge I noticed them walking ahead….too bad. Their singing was amazing and I could still smell the fire.

I noticed a few left overs from the days of railways past

The detritus of humans

From there I took a quick walk upstream, on the west side, to the end of the pathway. The river, swollen with water after the downpour had burst its banks. It looked quite amazing; fat and lazy meandering its way downstream.

The path is fantastic to walk along, so I walked right to the end.

Followed right to the end…

I love this view the most

My favourite view, looking downstream

In all a most enjoyable walk and despite not pounding along like I normally do, I managed a decent 7.53kms / 12238 steps. I also noticed that the hill, at the top of which I’m currently working, has an elevation of only 65 meters….it feels more like 650 when I’m trudging back after a long walk πŸ˜‰

Mapmywalk

And now I only have 8.5 days left in Lewes. Time to conquer that blessed path downstream to Southease….

Oh and please cross fingers 🀞🀞🀞🀞 for a fine day on Saturday. I want to visit the castle, it’s my final opportunity.

Read Full Post »

When Danny Boyle incorporated those famous words; our green and pleasant land into the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympics, he must have been talking about the hills of the South Downs….

“The aerial photograph reveals a pretty maypole, water mill, orchard and pasture inhabited by 70 grazing sheep. A village cricket green, orchard and farmers’ cottage complete the entrancing scene”. Extract from Daily Mail.

The only thing missing from my walk today was ‘a pretty maypole’ and I saw a windmill rather than a watermill.

I decided to spread my wings today and cross the downs to the little hamlet of Kingston. It looked close on the map, and unusually for me I didn’t do a distance calculation…. decided to just go.

It was a LOT further than I expected, but it was fabulous. The downs really are just beautiful and the green fields literally spread from horizon to horizon….as far as the eye can see.

I whizzed on down the now familiar route of Rotten Row past the non-existent Winterbourne Stream, left into Bell Lane and hung a right at the Swan Inn, and right again onto Juggs Lane.

Juggs Lane

A real country lane, narrow and lined with grass verges and trees, and hedgerows. I passed the occasional house nestled amongst the trees, and driveways leading to hidden houses, and soon crossed the motorway farrr below. The views across the valley to the east were spectacular and in the distance I could see the white cliffs above Cliffe, the Lewes Golf Course and the chalk downs where I walked last week.

I walked across those white cliffs last week

Autumn is truly here now and showing her fabulous colours. The road crossing the bridge and up the hill was of course metalled, my least favourite surface for walking. A group of cyclists whirled by, a mix of old and young – the youngest probably about 5 years old….a brilliant road for learning to ride safely.

Autumn, my favourite season

But soon I left that behind as the road became a sandy track beneath a tunnel of trees….the wind was howling through the tunnel like a freight train, the branches creaking and cracking with the strain. Passing a couple of orchards and definitely a few cottages one of which had horses and free range chickens.

Absolutely fantastic. It felt just wild!!

The path went on for quite some way and then through a gate and onto the rolling green fields….a green and pleasant land…..

I was completely on my own and the sense of freedom and wildness as the wind tried to sweep me off my feet was exhilarating. I can quite see why Julie Andrews ran and ran singing “the hills are alive…” and all that. But this girl doesn’t run (unless her life is at stake 🀣🀣🀣) so I just thought about it. And I definitely wouldn’t give up the day job to sing….

Mind you, I pretty much flew across the field with the assistance of the wind and soon realized that I had possibly miscalculated the distance relative to my free time of 2 hours….that field went on and on and on. And the wind howled like a dervish

Howling like a dervish πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒπŸ‘πŸ‘

To my excitement I spied a windmill (not a watermill but good enough) in the distance, the arms stationary without sails, but I could just imagine how fast they’d be whirling with the force of the wind.

A windmill πŸ˜€

I finally reached a farm gate and checking my app saw that I was near the road that leads into Kingston. Within 5 minutes of walking I was there. A quick visit to the 13th century ‘St Pancras Church of Kingston near Lewes’. Beautiful little church but again closed. I wish himself Archbishop whatshisname would pass on some of the wealth hidden in the vaults of his church and send some money to these parishes so they can afford to open up these amazing little churches and have them cleaned according to Covid-19 standards after visitors.

St Pancras Church of Kingston

By now 1 hour and 10 minutes of my break had passed so a dash of speed was needed. Finding the ‘finger’ post (really? That’s what they’re called?!) opposite the pub as directed by a local, I was soon wending my way along a ‘twitten’!! Yes, that’s exactly what he called it, and yayyy me, I knew what he meant πŸ˜‰ Its so weird hearing locals talk about the twittens. I’ve travelled extensively in England and the UK as a whole, and I’ve literally never heard the word before, but I shall never forget it, and may just introduce it to some other areas of the country – twitten sounds so much more romantic than ‘lane’. Not to be rude about lanes or anything but….

A twitten in Kingston

Said local man suggested it should take me no more that 30 minutes to get back to Lewes and he was spot on.

After leaving the twitten behind me I crossed an enormous field and in the distance I could see the grazing sheep and cows…thankfully in the distance..

Then through a very smelly and muddy farmyard. I think it takes a certain type of person to cope with muddy yards. It would drive me crazy and I’d be constantly trying to clean it up πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ

From there I crossed a narrow road and onto a cycle path. Hoorah for cycle paths. This one took me nearly all the way into Lewes but at the cricket field I turned off the cycle path and onto a far prettier and more pleasant bridle path.

The bridal path

Suddenly I was on familiar territory having walked this way a couple of times now and soon passed the Priory and then left into Southover High Street, past Anne of Cleves House and the stunning Manor House

Manor House

Then right at the Swan Inn, right into Rotten Row, and left into the High Street.

Swan Inn, Lewes

8.94kms, and 1:59:16 – I arrived back at work with 44 seconds to spare πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ total number of steps 13365 : elevation 111 meters….enjoyment; immeasurable.

Another fantastic walk done and dusted. I love seeing different parts of the country and always try to visit somewhere other than where I’m working. I’ve explored Lewes thoroughly now and beyond an outstanding visit to the castle (Saturday hopefully) and my still unaccomplished walk downstream of the river and the walk along the disused railway track, I think I’ve seen pretty much all of Lewes and then some.

But I still have 9 days here so I forsee a few more interesting explorations in my future

Mapmywalk
A short compilation

Read Full Post »

There’s so much to see and do in Lewes that I’m quite kept on my feet.

Today I set out on my 2nd attempt to find the river pathway and although I wasn’t successful, I believe I’m getting closer 🀣🀣🀣 Saw this on my walkabout

Egrets Way….

I initially followed the instructions from a local but I’m afraid it led me to a great big green field and a gate and although I can see from mapmywalk that I was close to the river, it wasn’t quite where I should have been.

However, I did go off at a tangent on the way back and discovered more of Lewes.

I walked along streets and lanes as yet untrodden by myself, and passed a couple of old favourites

And an old water pump

9.64 kms all told and slowly I’m reducing my 2020 Conqueror challenge deficit. 731.8kms to go by 31.12.2020 πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ

Read Full Post »

Hoorah!! I did it! I finished walking the Inca Trail; virtually πŸ˜ƒπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

Hoorah!

My walk today; 10.38kms took me over the finish line by .08km and challenge #4 is complete. As always the postcard that popped into my mailbox is gorgeous and really makes me want to walk the trail for real. But its quite a long way away, so I shall settle for having walked it virtually.

Machu Picchu

Voted as one of the New 7 Wonders of the World and listed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983, Machu Picchu is a 15th century Inca citadel steeped in mystery and myth. Thought to have been built on the request of the incumbent Emperor Pachacuti as a royal estate, Machu Picchu is an engineering marvel. Built without mortar, the stones are cut so precisely, they fit perfectly together. Sitting atop two fault lines, during earthquakes the stones knock against each other and then fall back into place.

The rise and fall of the Inca Empire lasted a mere 130 years. Following the Spanish invasion of the Inca Empire in early 16th century, Machu Picchu was abandoned with the Spanish unlikely to have ever seen it. Left to the elements the citadel was grown over by vegetation and forgotten over the centuries until 1911 when Hiram Bingham III of Yale University, visited the site as part of an expedition in search of another city. Returning the following year, Bingham spent 4 months with local labour to clear the vegetation and the next 3 years excavating and studying discovered artifacts.

From here the final descent into Aguas Calientes is on a hair-raising 9km zig-zag mountain road called Hiram Bingham Hwy. Barely wide enough to fit two cars and lacking guardrails, it is an unsealed road and a rough ride that is not for the faint of heart nor for those who are prone to vertigo.

Once you arrive in Aguas Calientes, book yourself into a thermal bath to rest and recover your weary body. Take a walk through the local craft market before settling in for dinner. Try the Peruvian national drink, the Pisco Sour, whilst indulging in the spicy and bold flavours of Peruvian cuisine.

Fantastic!! πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

My ‘real’ walk was a little more mundane, but no less satisfying. I had a plan, hmmm??πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ to follow the river from Lewes to Newhaven. It looks easy enough on Google maps and I spent a few hours last night researching possible routes. But none of them were really clear so today I decided to scout the route as far as possible, and see how far I could get.

Not very far as it turned out πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

At 2.74kms I faced a wee challenge, a very locked gate and the possibility of unwanted company.

I debated climbing over the gate, but after consideration thought it would be rude and didn’t fancy getting halfway across the field only to find said πŸ‚ behind me!!

So instead, I retraced my steps and returned to town.

I then decided to follow the river upstream, since downstream wasn’t quite working out. Much better route.

Very pretty, lots of green and a fab path. I crossed over the river via a pedestrian bridge and found myself on the Sussex Ouse Valley Way, and a very walkable path.

The views of the river and valley are just perfect and its well away from any traffic, except for the occasional cyclist.

I walked for quite a distance – I could see the Offam church spire peeping up between the trees, the same forests where the Battle of Lewes was fought in 1264

and here I encountered a whole herd of cattle. I walked on some way but in the distance I could see a cow bellowing loudly and having a hissy fit, so before she got the whole bunch worked up, I retreated…as Henry III should really have considered…

This fellow wasn’t one bit interested

Once back over the river, I did a bit of a dogleg and discovered a disused railway line….heading enticingly off into the distance. Not very far according to a local lady, just 1km. So I shall head back that way next week and walk it.

Then with just 3kms to go I headed back to work and after going around the block twice LOL I finally reached 10.38kms and my break was over. But I reached my goal and completed the Inca Trail.

I do so love walking and could really just keep going….

Scenes from the walk
Looks a bit like a bow and arrow…

Read Full Post »

I received my latest Inca Trail postcard last night.

Walking the Inca Trail – virtually πŸ˜ƒ

This is one of the features of virtually walking  @the_conqueror_challenges

I love the history and the stories that accompany the postcards.

Surfacing from the cloud forest of the Runkuraqay Pass, the trail commences its descent towards the ruins of Sayacmarca with sweeping views of the Pumahuanca Mountain.

Continue on to Phuyupatamarca, one of the most intact Inca ruins, and stop to enjoy the snow-capped view of Mt Salcantay. At 6,200m, Mt Salcantay is the tallest mountain in the region. It’s Quecha name translates as wild, uncivilized, savage and as such is often referred to as Savage Mountain. The summit of Mt Salcantay was first conquered in 1952 by a French-American expedition. No easy feat since the “climb involves 1,800m of vertical gain, on glacier, snow, ice, and some rock.”

Trek onwards to Intipata and Winay Wayna, both known for their agricultural terraces and their convex shape of the terrain, to finally reach the Sun Gate for a breathtaking aerial view of Machu Picchu. Once a fortress, the Sun Gate was the main entrance to Machu Picchu and most likely guarded by imperial guards. Given the strict controls over entries, it is believed that only royalty and select guests were permitted to visit.

The first postcard arrived 5 days ago, shortly after I started the challenge; its beautiful and the history is fascinating.

The Inca Trail

The Inca Trail is part of a much larger road network. At the height of its power, the Inca Empire stretched 4,023km from modern day Ecuador to Argentina. The Inca road system was one of the most advanced transportation structures of its time, linking together 40,000km of roadway. The road system provided for quick and reliable logistical support, civilian and military communication, personnel movement on official duty and control over the Empire by dispatching troops when necessary. Following the Spanish conquest in the 1500s much of the network was abandoned and destroyed. In order to preserve the history and restore parts of the network the Inca Road System, officially known as Andean Road System, entered the UNESCO register in 2014.

Much of the Inca Trail is the original construction. Imagine that with every step you take someone laid the roadway beneath your feet some 500 years ago.

The ascent to Dead Woman’s Pass is both dreaded and revered. It is the most rigorous climb reaching heights of 4,215m in a such a high altitude environment where the oxygen level is low making breathing shallower and the effort needed to move forwards greater. In the same breath overcoming the difficulty and strenuousness of the climb is also the most rewarding moment.

Following a steep descent into the valley of the pass comes a second ascent to Runkuraqay Pass. On the way are the ruins of a tampu, which was an administrative and military structure used for supplies, lodgings and depositories of quipu-based accounting records.

Quipu was a record keeping system of different knots tied in ropes attached to a longer cord. It was used in lieu of writing since the Incas did not have an alphabet based writing system.

The tampu was served by conscripted individuals from nearby communities, as part of the mit’a labor system. Mit’a was mandatory public service used as the labor force to build roads, bridges, terraces and fortifications.

Isn’t that fantastic. So much thought has gone into creating these postcards and the information provided is something I would not have known unless I actually did some research.

Getting the postcards is a massive encouragement to increase my kms ASAP 🀣🀣🀣🀣

If you’d like to join me on these virtual challenges, you can sign up here via my link. You don’t have to join a team, I didn’t, but there are loads of teams if you fancied walking with other folks.

This is not an affiliate link and I don’t make any money from people signing up, but you get a 10% discount on any walks you sign up for and I think I get a 10% discount as well….which is a moot point really since I’ve already signed up for all the walks I want to do πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ for now anyway. Of course they may well introduce other walks, in which case, I guess I’ll sign up for them. I am just a tad addicted.

Read Full Post »

From Oxted to Kemsing

Well,  you’ll be pleased to know I made it. Day 1 done & dusted. In lots of pain and my feet are very unhappy…not sure how they’re going to feel about doing this all over again tomorrow.😱😱πŸ₯ΊπŸ₯ΊπŸ₯Ί

So I left home at 6am on the dot  and got to Ramsgate station with 15 minutes to spare.
I reached Oxted at 09:25 and set about finding breakfast. I nearly slipped up and went to Wetherspoons, but left as soon as I realised my error 😣😣😣
After a coffee and toasted sandwich from Coughlan’s bakery I switched mapmywalk on and set off for St Peter’s church where I got my first Pilgrim’s stamp, then it was a hard slog along a horrible road till I intercepted the Pilgrim’s Way.

First destination was Chevening Park where I had to climb a bloody awful hill and then go back down again. From thereon the terrain was fairly flat. I finally reached Dunton Green where I stopped for supper at The Rose and Crown and had a delicious meal of fish and chips.

At just on 5pm I set off again for Otford, a Domesday Book Village, where I crossed the River Darent. What a delightful place. Picturesque with the remains of a palace where Henry VIII and Katherine if Aragon once stayed. The church and palace have links to Thomas Beckett.

Then I had to force myself to walk the final 4 kms to Kemsing & the Airbnb.  I’m aching from head to toe. But I did it πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ

Walked 26km, 10 hours including stops and saw so many amazing things. Lucky me.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

DAVID OAKES - IMAGES.

An Occasional Diary of Everyday Life and Travel in the U.K. and sometimes elsewhere

Reg's book blog

Discover your next page turner

Wandering Explorer Travel

Thoughts & Memories of a Traveler at Heart

Wild Walking UK

Long-distance walking and wild camping in the UK. Follow me on Twitter: @wildwalkingUK

Clearskies Camino

My times on the Camino de Santiago

Murray Robertson (photography & poems)

I make photographs and poems to please myself (and share them to please you).

saania2806.wordpress.com/

Philosophy is all about being curious, asking basic questions. And it can be fun!