Thursday, 21 April 2016

Half way there

 As part of the Kington Walking Festival, Red Kite Fostering are sponsoring the 8 Peaks Challenge which links the 8 big hills north of Kington into one masochistic trail. As it was a sunny afternoon and part of this years man test is to canter up and down the three biggest mountains in three countries of the UK yours truly decided to recce the last half of the route and 12 minutes after setting off found himself at a point where it stopped being easy.
 Thanks to the quarry the top of the first hill was inaccessible (read missing) but it did provide
 a great view of the Bonsai Mountain.
 Further along I found a graveyard that I had not ever seen before, something to go back later and look at and once again I headed uphill
 via a forest track
 which soon became really steep
 and then impossibly steep
 but once again I found myself on a summit, one I have always looked at and wondered how to get there.
 So here yours truly is, very happy with Worzel Wood and the Bonsai Mountain waiting to be bagged below and behind me.
 If only it was as easy going as this all the way.
 It was in fact mightily difficult with ample opportunity to get lost in disney style woodland where I met the forest folk, deer, rabbits and squirrels all watched my progress (lack of) with a big buzzard flying ahead of me down an avenue of fir trees. I totally expected to hear Snow White singing in the distance.
 More tricky bits conquered
 I crossed the last flat bit before heading skyward again.
 Up a nightmare track which was even worse on the way down
 until finally reaching the style leading to the Bonsai Mountain where I chose an insane route up
 as it was the steepest and longest route, here we are looking back over Worzel and out towards Stanner, the last two peaks bagged.
 Obligatory selfie taken I headed off down the North Face Gulley
 which is a forbnidding maze of gorse and rocks
where at the bottom my supporters welcomed me with rapturous applause. Or not. 2 hours 8 mins for 10km, as my school report says, could do better, meanwhile I am crawling off the die quietly. Well not too quietly as I'm a bloke.

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