In response to a recent post where I laid out my (excessive) backpacking kit, a number of people, across various social media platforms, expressed an interest in knowing what I might have inside my wash bag and my first aid kit drybag (both of which were considerably weighty against other items in my arsenal).
I’m grateful for all of the suggestions and tips that people have provided. Now, I’m going to reveal why they weigh so much.
My Bank Holiday weekend had begun! This was to be the first of two major outings over the course of three days. I’d not been across to the Welsh mountains since a very wet day in January. For this weekend, the forecast promised undisturbed sunshine.
This walk began in the village of Chew Magna, where free use of the car park is available, provided you get there early. It’s an area I’m quite familiar with and a popular ‘commuter route’ linking the A38 with the A37 and beyond.
Bearing in mind this is less than a thirty-minute drive south of Bristol, it commands appreciation. My walk was to begin by following a portion of the local Three Peaks Walk, before looping back along previously unexplored footpaths.
By the time of writing this post, I had expected I would be coming to the end of my fourth day backpacking along The Ridgeway National Trail…
I set off on Saturday morning. Slightly later than intended but I was on to the trail soon enough. Within the first three miles, I noticed a pain down the outside of my left leg and, even with stretching, it remained with me for the whole twenty-five miles of day one. I made it to the camp site that evening but was safely and generously ‘extracted’ on Sunday morning.
At 18kg (according to my possibly-unreliable luggage scales), my rucksack was far too heavy and it made little sense for me to press on through the pain. I’ve spent this afternoon weighing everything and taking notes, all of which I’ll share below.
So, to a Caerphilly. A South Wales town only a short distance north of Cardiff. An area I’d never visited and not one I would’ve considered exploring, when looking for a day walk of reasonable distance and duration.
Naturally, I’d be drawn further north to the mountains… But Matt (who always leads good walks) had devised a thirteen-mile route through the woods that we were destined to follow.