Saturday, 8 November 2014


Last night was the perfect outdoor sleep. By a barn - Herzog broke into a barn near here, Bauerbach - under hazel boughs, the full moon throwing dapple patterns on the tarp. Cheese sandwiches and reading, warm in my (actually David Flower's, lent when he learnt how inadequate mine was) sleeping bag.
Because I started walking from Munich just past midnight, so actually in the early hours of Thurs morning, I wasn't sure which day of the walk I've been on each day. Well today is definitely the difficult third day, not the fourth. Knee aches  footsore and with two actual blisters, aching shoulders, plodding. But mentally happy as a lark.
Have rush-hobbled to cross the Lech river and find shops before they all close until Monday. I'm carrying as little food/weight as possible and happy to miss the odd meal or two but 36 hours without food might be a bit bleak.
I've just managed the linguistic feat required to buy surgical spirit for my stove. The last chemist mistranslated and sold me surgical benzine aka petrol. Imagine my surprise when I filled my stove and lit it deep in the woods on my first night and there was a huge ball of flame between my legs.
On the great open grassland by the Lech there was a flock of sheep with shepherds, dogs and an encampment of small caravans and wheeled huts. Transhumance in modern Europe. They move their flock s between grazing grounds across Germany. I am tuned to anyone else moving on foot. Yesterday marching soldiers and escaping POWs and spies travelling cross country filled my mind. Today it's shepherds.
What I see are cars. I can remember every non-urban walker I've seen since I started because there have been so few. Three dog walkers, a couple going for a walk, somebody in a field just walking.
There are shots from the towers along the edge of the woods. It's deer hunting season.
I'm in a petrol station at lunchtime - a coffee and a croissant, the first food of the day. I must walk on and find more food for the coming days.
The sun is still shining.

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About Me

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I'm an independent writer on wilderness activities, slow adventures, traditional horsemanship and odd stuff. I'm the author of Paddle; A long way around Ireland (Sort Of Books), and i was the story consultant on the IMAX documentary on cowboy cultures across the globe, Ride Around The Word. The Slow Adventure sends reports back from the front-line of a slow and simple life; horses, kayaks, guitars, long walks, travel, books, simplicity, trains, travel, wildlife and the occasional thrill.