Nearing the 300 mile mark… 

Hello my lovely readers!

It has been a few days since I have updated you all on my adventure. I’ve been very busy meeting people and having lots of fun. And also moaning a lot about carrying my tortoise bag for what feels like a million miles. 

I’m still in very good spirit because of all the kind gestures from people along the way. Let me tell you what has been happening…

It started with the lovely ladies at Smeatons Lakes, they gave us a free night. Very kind of you thank you Lesley! We came across the place where they make British Sugar which was interesting and ate some tasty food served by a very kind young lady at The Ram in Newark. 

We walked through a rather lot of fields! And with my new found friends having a sniff, the cows, one actually licked my hand which I was very happy about. We came across an AMAZING poppy field, completely full of Poppies, it was such a beautiful site. One I will never forget. We laid in the grass, picked some flowers, ate some delicious food. 

The day before yesterday we were absolutely shattered and decided to stop after about 8 or 9 miles in a very nice pub in Hose called The Rose and Crown, the owner was very sweet and even allowed us to camp in her Paddock. So of course many beers and pizzas later we spent the night there. Which I do believe was a bird sanctuary and they all decided to tweet away at 4am. The beautiful croaky pigeon was amongst the team. And as you all know I love the sound of the wood pigeon. (Not). Very kind owners and we thank them for the free accommodation. X

I think yesterday might of been one of the best days we’ve had. Firstly we met Nigel. Now Nigel really is a one in a million. You just don’t come across people so kind as he is. A thank you from the bottom of our hearts. He firstly served us some tasty pork pies, the only place in Melton Mawbray to get pies. We had a great chat about life, the walk, the area etc. He then wrapped up some scones, all buttered and delicious, and he dropped off our food shopping to the camp site! Just such a warm soul and a lovely human being. Thank you Nig x

Last night was very enjoyable staying at Eye Kettleby Lakes, which might I add they gave to us for free!! A beautiful wooden restaurant and bar. Oh my goodness the showers were just incredible. They had that real wood sauna smell to them. Clean, tidy, just really kept well. A huge thank you to the owner of the land, a very gentle man and Craig and the bar lady. 

And thank you Kev for the £5 donation! 

Gosh I feel like I have waffled on a rather lot but I feel very humbled from all my experiences with other humans who pass me by along my journey. People stop by the road and ask if we need a ride, they come up to us and have a chat. I will remember each and ever special moment always. The first 3 weeks were magical and without my bag it was almost trainng for this last push. 

I hope you haven’t nodded off, but maybe my little post today will bring a smile to your face and cheer up your Monday. After all. Life is good, stay happy and keep walking! 

   
                                     

And the sunshine came out

oh we have had a lovely couple of days of sunshine and tomorrow they say it is still going to be lovely again. I have ever growing strange tan lines, the sock lines are the most flattering 😉 

The middle part of the UK is rather dull not much to differentiate one day from the next lots of sweet country villages and windy roads to navigate round. Very pretty and sweet but not where I would chose to actually live. I am missing London today I must say. 

So the last couple of days I walked a variety of some days alone and some with my dad and some afternoons with my mum. It’s all just going very well really. My feet are happy little walker feet. My face is brown and rosy and the tent is now up and back in action! Well the new one. We purchased an Out Well, much better. No offence Vango but your Icaruas tent was pretty shite. We are much happier and I am really growing attached to my little house and roll matts. 

All in all a happy, simple few days and really looking forward to having a day off to take photos, not to stop walking of course. I could walk forever… My feet just want to keep going and going. Maybe my next walking adventure will be The Great Wall of China? 

I am just about to go to bed safely wrapped up in my sleeping bag. We face the outskirts of Leeds tomorrow as we are currently just East of the main city. Keeping as rural as possible. 

Happy Hump Day! X

   
        

A slight path alteration through a few fields under and over a few fences across a river. Usual    

One of my favourite flowers

     

The daily feet regime 

Thinking out loud… 

Sometimes stepping away from the normality of the daily grind can help one to understand what is important and what is not important in our lives. 

We hold onto possessions and objects, our phones rule us, we are closed and forget to live and breathe the air we are so freely given. 

Instead of rushing from A to B take a moment to see others around us, just stop and say hello to passers by on the street. It is kind. Nature is kind. Don’t constantly look down, glued to your phone, look up, look out, there is so much to see and involve your mind in. 

I hope you agree. 

Yesterday’s route 

Walking the A68…

Not much to report on from yesterday, I walked alone just to get the miles done really, walking the A68 for 18 miles. Very dangerous with all the lorries and pretty hard going, but we reached the border which was fantastic. I feel like we are getting somewhere now. 

A lovely day off today wandering photo making. We are at the top of the Pennines which is very picturesque. And it is sunny! Marvellous 🙂

A Happy Hannah. 
   
               

Day 2 17 mile walk Hannah and Papa Ranken 

Day 2 May 26th walking the A68 

So yesterday (26th May) was a good day knocking off 1/500th of the route with a 17 mile day, every little helps after all. 

Awful bit of road kill every 1 mile, dead crows, dead deers, dead badger, rabbits, pheasants you name it, it was there… a very sad distressed birdie was calling out for his friend which was saw lying dead on the road side, very sad to know that a human had done this in their car and probably not even noticed. 

On a lighter note, glorious sunshine beamed down on us so made the day rather enjoyable. All in all a great day. Proud of my dad for enduring the miles. Going it alone tomorrow.  

Some photos from the trip: 

   
               

Walking to work, protein bars and my happy little deformed toe…

Hello all

Just a little update on what’s new with me.

So last night I felt like going for a little walk, as I normally love doing after work. Time to think, chat to friends, get my feet hardened for the real deal (which is happening on 23rd May BTW!). So I started to walk, I walked to Vauxhall.. 3 miles… I walked to Clapham Junction 4.5 miles… I just walked the whole way home back to Putney… 8 miles! Fantastic.

I then decided hmmm… let’s give that another go but in reverse at 6am instead, so I walked from Putney back to work in Central London. Another 8 miles, maybe I should go again tonight?

When I reached the office this morning I had a little nibble on my well awaited Protein Bar, ok so have you ever tried a Protein Bar? It takes like old, cardboard, mixed with off socks. Why on earth must I eat this? I think I will stick to bananas and eggs. Disgusting!

I must say I do feel pretty knackered now from it all sat at my desk. But good knackered, happy, energised, content.

Oh yes and my little deformed toe I hear you asking? Well I have been wearing a toe ring for the past 3 or 4 years and took it off recently, my toe is rather misshapen and painful. The toe ring was actually moulding into my toe, strange how the body adapts to funny bits of decorative metal.

well that is my last few day recap, it is now only a few weeks until I go. I cannot believe it has come around so quickly. I am happy inside my soul. Beautifully happy and content with my life right at this moment in time. I have been waiting a long time to say this.

Thank you Mother Earth x

Tips for Waking Up Early

The early morning hours are so quiet.  There’s space to breathe, reflect, meditate, read, write.  If you’re like me, and you want to make an early start but you just can’t, then here are 5 tips:

  1. Wake up a little bit earlier everyday until you get to your goal wake up time.
  2. Think, “I am a morning person. I love waking up early.”
  3. Put your alarm out of reach, so you have to get up to turn it off.
  4. Motivate yourself with an inspiring reason to rise early.

5. Go to bed early!

Thank you Inner Space.

Baffin in action

Testing my Baffin wear.

Baffin is Canada’s largest manufacturer of boots, especially designed for winter seasons. They also do a fantastic range of clothing items too, which I tested out this weekend.

Baffin is an Island in Canada named after the English navigator and explorer William Baffin, who died in January 1622. It is Canada’s largest island and sits in the Canadian territory of Nunavut. It has an extremely cold climate so Baffin boots would be ideal here as most of Baffin Island lies above the chilly Arctic Circle.

This is all very interesting to me as I would not of known any of this information if it had not been for the outdoors brand Baffin to have brought it all to my attention. You learn something new everyday!

So my experiences with Baffin… I decided to try out my short sleeve mid-layer Baffin vest top, with a breathable long sleeve under top (not Baffin) to keep my arms warm. It was a sunny day but there was still a chill in the air and it was fairly windy. Normally when I have been training I get so itchy and hot and stuffy from some of my other mid-layers I wear, but my Baffin just keep me so happy and regulated, I didn’t need to add or remove any extra layers… when I was in the shade I zipped right up, when in the sun I just undid the zip, fantastic little number!

It has really nice sort of reflective lines around the pockets and down the front zip, which I think adds a nice touch, easy to see in the dark – I haven’t tried it out in the dark but will definitely come in handy. I also really like the material it is made with (what is the material??) it feels spongy and different to any other outdoors item I have felt, it holds its shape really well.

I can’t really fault this product as it is made perfectly for the sort of thing I am going to be using it for. I am very excited to try out my other Baffin top, which I will do on my next train maybe in the week. I love trying new things! This is a lovely brand, well designed, high quality material – I would recommend to walkers and hikers, a very lightweight and useful item to have in your backpack.

Thank you Baffin x

hannahs walk   Baffin Hannah's Walk

You can see the product I tested here.

Weekend Walking

This weekend was a beautiful one, absolutely perfect for a stroll in the park. Everyone was peeling off their winter layers, for at last a bit of sunshine on our beaming faces.

I did a 10 mile round walk early Sunday morning and I actually found it pretty ok. I could quite happily get up the next day and go again, I was a little sleepy afterwards but I think I needed to manage my food intake better. More food at the beginning.

I of course did my standard Richmond park route with an added 4 miles, lots of lovely things passed me by on route, the main thing I enjoyed was when two strangers dogs decided to have a little session right in the middle of the path. Oh how I did chuckle.

I trialled a little power up pouch which was interesting, quite enjoyed the little kick.

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Lots of happy trees along route.

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do not pick the mushies.

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I had a lovely walk and I can’t wait to go again, this time I will increase the weight of my bag and go for a little further. Next walk Putney to Holborn Viaduct 6am.

See you all soon!

After the Walk.. How to wind down

After a long distance walk, or any form of strenuous exercise for a prolonged period, you may want to just sleep, eat and rest. Yes by all means do all those things and celebrate too, what an achievement! Well done! But you must not fully laze around as the body has been used to continuous exercise, therefore it needs to wind down slowly. Go for a slow walk everyday, stretch the body, do a little yoga, a light jog …anything that keeps the body moving and the blood flowing will really help the recovery process.

Hope this helps!

If you do have any stories to wish to share or for me to blog about just send them over on here or via my email address I will see what I can do.

hannah.ranken@twoweeks.org.uk