You can do it!

Posted by: Gin

You can do it! - 16/08/07 08:03 PM

Hello everybody!
I'm a girl from Holland, and about a month ago I finished walking the Pennine Way. Before I left, on the 22nd of June, I was quite scared because somebody had written that only 1% of the people who start walking, actualy finish it. And also the fact that everybody said it was important to know how to use a compass didn't make me more confident.
I do know how to use a compass, but I'm not an expert, and I defenitely didn't want to take all of the OS maps because they're heavy and expensive.

In the end I decided to go anyway, and just give it a try. I took the Trailblazer Guide (written by Edward de la Billiere and Keith Carter) and the two footprint maps. I bought a new lightweight tent, and off I went...

I walked 16 days and had two rest days. One of them was because the combination wind and rain made it absolutely impossible to walk straight. I spent two nights in a youth hostel to dry out my kit, and I camped the rest of the nights.
And I need to say that it defenitely wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be. The signposting was good on most of way, and the guidebook and maps helped me out on places where that wasn't the fact. I needed to use my compass twice (on Cross Fell in thick fog, and just before Black Hill, when I lost the path). The only thing that made me hesitate to continue was the weather. Not only because I was wet and cold most of the time, but especialy because most of the paths had become a river. On places where there were slabs and duckboards it was allright (and I'm very thankfull to the people who put them there!!) but on the rest there tended to be a layer of about 10cm of water at least. Once I sank in the mud until my waist!
But I made it, and what I want to say is: if you realy want to do it; do it! And don't be scared by what people say. You'll only realy know how it is when you're actualy there... I met a few wonderfull people who helped me at the right moments, and that will happen to you too if you keep the trust that everything will be allright in the end. The way will be to you how it needs to be.
xx Jindra
Posted by: revmary

Re: You can do it! - 16/08/07 09:50 PM

Good for you for taking the leap and going for the entire walk. We were lucky not to have to deal with impossible weather. But, between guidebooks and maps and compasses and common sense, yes, you can make your way from Edale to Kirk Yetholm.
My daughter and I often expressed our gratitude to those (volunteers?) who set those stones and boards in place so that we were knee- and waist-deep in the bogs.
So the message is, don't let the dire warnings about the Pennine Way keep you from the intense spiritual experience of the walk.
Posted by: revmary

Re: You can do it! - 16/08/07 09:52 PM

Sorry, I meant NOT knee- and waist- deep in bogs.
Posted by: tonyk

Re: You can do it! - 16/08/07 10:33 PM

Well done,Jindra!These days,due to the paving,the route is quite distinct and far easier to follow than it was in the past.I remember when the stones slabs were put in place back in 1990.Most of the workers were volunteers and had to heave the slabs into position with crowbars!

Those weather conditions would be enough to break the spirits of the hardest of men,so again,well done.
Posted by: RooSe

Re: You can do it! - 17/08/07 01:02 PM

Well Done Gin, love your attitude !

Inspirational post to say the least, glad you enjoyed the walk even with the bad weather we've been having [img][/img]

When i first walked the PW 17yrs ago a girl from Holland who was walking solo at the time started walking with me and my friend @ Hawes she was realy good company and decided to tag along with us all the way to Kirk Yetholm and the end of the PW. Remebering her (Sandra) and reading your post does you girls from Holland a lot of credit.

Congratulations once again and "good on ya!"

Setting off myself in about 2hrs, starting walking Sat morning, hope i can post in 3 weeks time that everything went ok [img][/img]
Posted by: Robbie

Re: You can do it! - 17/08/07 03:38 PM

Top effort! As I've said before and will always do, anyone who completes this Way has my respect. And considering the weather we have had recently, an even better effort.
I can imagine what you went through on Cross Fell, I too had extreme weather, by far the worst I have ever experienced.