Day 8 of 14 done and today may have been my favourite so far! I got all the things I love today, some good climbs with amazing views as a reward, lots of time in the quiet forest and a good amount of sunshine too! Also a nice distance at 22km and in about 6hours – sweet spot.
The day started with a yummy hot breakfast at 8am and by 830 I had said ‘thanks very much’ to the amazing owners at The Red Lion Inn and was on my way! I had my Sunnies on and was excited to stretch the legs again after my much needed rest day.
The day started with a heart pumping climb up and out of Knighton through a quiet dark forest (thanks to the fine folks who built in some stairs on the steeper bits) and I had the pleasure of staying quite high for a couple of hours with lots of grassy walking and fantastic views.
My fav moment of the walk … a wee old Welsh guy out checking on the sheep and cows ‘as you should do on a Sunday mornin’ joined me for a couple of long pastures. Chatting about his farm, giving me some hints on the best views and somehow guessed West Canada as my original. I did not have a visible flag on my pack! What a bloke, such a fun little visit!
From there, what goes up must come down. I spent some time angling down to the lower valley with some more forest time, pasture walking and much of the time walking on the actual Dyke itself!
I met quite a few Offa’s Dyke Walkers on this stretch. One couple (locals) mentioned they lived in Calgary once and he was one of the guys who built the Jasper Gondola! Another gave me a heads up about a VERY overgrown section of the Path ahead – very is an understatement! What I wouldn’t have given for a little travel sized weed wacker for that mile. My daily tick check was extra vigilant this evening!
I enjoyed a little snack for my lunch at the side of a little river. I somehow forgot to buy lunch for the day so an apple, crackers and a Twix for the win! The bridge had a great spot to sit and the angle made a perfect spot to pop my feet up for a little rest too! Brilliant!
Well in Wales, what goes down must go up and up and up again. The climb from this river to the top of the next ridge called Herrock Hill was a doozy – heart beating and hard working. I just ‘kept swimming’ so much so I didn’t care that I got bit by not just one horsefly but 4! They love getting their fangs into you at the worst time, and on the back of my legs and butt too! At least it’s not my face like the other day. Jerks!
Totally worth it for the view!
From there it was a pleasantly long and steady downhill into Kington. Just as I walked into town, my home for the night The Swan Inn came into sight. I was just thinking about stretching and putting my feet up … and a pint!
Now I told you about the best part of the Path but do you know the best part of the day?! I have been joined by the one and only Impossible Turtle (trail name!) for the second half of this amazing Path!
There will be shenanigans than usual with Cheryl at my side!
Tomorrow we are walking Kington to Hay on Wye about 24km which includes a long ridge walk – and the weather looks amazing!