Feeling a whole lot more positive it was time to rejoin some of the MWA Tartan Trekkers for another walk. With less than four weeks to go it’s a fine balance between maintaining fitness, stretching your limits a little more and not injuring yourself. With that in mind there was much discussion in the run up to the Saturday but finally a lovely coastal route was found. Frankly we are running out of new ideas now. When, like me, you are an hour from your favourite type of walk then finding a distance which fits in daylight hours at this time of year can be challenging. Ok I know I live in the Cairngorms and I am surrounded by beauty. But it’s not my favourite walk. What is? Well I will give you a clue, it begins and ends with sea. And there is sand – which is all good training. Right? 😀
So route planned I took myself off to bed for an early night last night with an early start ahead. So imagine my surprise (read that as “horror”) when I saw white stuff outside my window this morning. Yup! A white out with snow still falling. Had I not had a necessary trip to an event venue this morning I might have been tempted to slip back under my duvet.
A healthy breakfast and 35 miles later I was parked at said venue on the Lossiemouth Coast. Ping! “Nice day for walking if you are a duck”. Ping “It’ll be fine by 10am, be positive” Ping! “All positive from here as all I am seeing is duvet”. What on earth? That’s my three walking companions today and at this rate I might be walking Burghead to Covesea alone. And back again! One by one the troops move from an attitude of “really?” (yes I can read you) to “I am still in!” Phew…
So fast forward nearly seven hours and we have completed 14.46 miles along the beautiful Moray Coast. I hadn’t planned that distance – in my head this was only 12, which is only just over 10 right? My confidence was still a little shaken after the pain of 18 exactly seven days before. But with Pauline, Kirsty and Susan for company the miles just rolled away. And the weather was awesome. No snow, no rain and blue sky. We covered boobs and bras, loo rolls and wet wipes. False teeth and toe nails. Magic socks and insoles. Corsets, indiscretions and the wide legged technique.
We stopped for a break, squeezed our four bottoms on a bench and watched the sea spray as it crashed against the rocks. By now the sun was out, the sky all blue with fluffy clouds and life was just fab. Kirsty with her healthy green juice, me with my new nutty energy bites and Pauline with her….packet of Marky’s Choclolate Chip cookies. Their finest non the less. Pauline remarks “we are like last of the summer wine”. I lost count of how many times we declared the weather, the walk, the day as being one of the best.
We watched Susan do a 180 degree turn and head off at speed back the way we came. I mean we were only 20 minutes from a lunch stop for heaven’s sake. “She’s lost her glove!”. Kirsty and I look at each other and just double up. She could be back in Hopeman! I have visions of this blue jacket vanishing over the horizon looking for that glove. The return journey was no less funny. See a sunny afternoon brings them all out. The lady in her Sunday best must have wondered long and hard about these four women dressed for an alpine trek. And I will save the “Specsavers” moment for another day.
I ached a wee bit last night but this morning feels pretty amazing actually! Which is a good sign as in 25 days time I will need enough energy to do that distance on four consecutive days (with one of those almost 21 miles). Thank you Susan, Kirsty and Pauline for being awesome company and funny as hell. If I wasn’t already heading to the Sahara with you I’d be packing you in my pocket. 30,031 steps added to the “stepometer” and that’s me tantalisingly close to 900k.
Prologue. Are you still wondering about that wide legged technique? Ask the Trekkers, they’ll be happy to demonstrate – their method used to straddle the muddiest of paths of course 😉