Posted by: sweetpea | May 6, 2008

Offa’s Dyke

View from Offa\'s Dyke

Last Tuesday I headed down to Hay on Wye to meet up with my friend Tony who is doing the Land’s end to John o’Groats walk at the moment, except that he is doing a particularly long version of the route.  Not only is he doing the LEJOG walk, but he is also trying to do as many of the Long Distance paths along the way, and will finish off by walking along the length of the North West coast of Scotland.  Anyway, I forget how far exactly he will have walked when he’s finished, needless to say it is a very long way and I admire him a lot for taking it on.

Along his route he has arranged to meet up with various friends to keep him company along sections, me being one such friend.  So off I headed to do two days of walking with him from Hay-on-Wye to Kington (15miles) and then on to Knighton (13miles).  This of course would be great training for me as I prepare for my imminent long walk (although pretty miniscule compared to Tony’s epic journey) from St Bees to Kirkby Stephen next week.

Day one was a very pleasant walk for the most part, and as a bonus we were joined by three fellow walkers that Tony had met on previous days.  We were lucky with the weather in the morning and had some almost amazing views, I say almost because it was a little hazy so we didn’t see as far as we might have, but still very pretty.  I was amazed by the amount of flowers in the verges, it reminded me of cornwall, bluebells, primroses, cowslips, forget-me-nots, violets…and more.  We met two very cute minature ponies along the way and had a teabreak in a local churchyard with hot drinks provided for a donation to the church fund.  By mid afternoon however our luck with the weather had turned and we soon experienced a hail shower followed a little later by rain. By the time we reached Kington YHA we were a little on the wet side, and I for one had had enough walking for one day.  By the way, I can thoroughly recommend Kington YHA as a nice place to stay, seems they’ve just refurbished it, and the showers are fantastic, just what you need to warm yourself up.

Day two was again a very pleasant walk although for me a little more gruelling despite the slightly shorter mileage.  We were once more blessed with some fine walking weather, and this time the views were truely amazing, we could see for miles down the valleys as we walked over the hills.  It was also a good walk as we could actually see and even walk on the Offa’s Dyke.  As I needed to reach Knighton before 4:30 to catch a bus that would allow me to get home the same day, we had to pick up the pace from the previous day.  Now I’m not a slow walker, but neither am I particularly fast, so I was now walking at a faster than normal pace for me which is what made the walk gruelling, I was so tired by the time we reached Knighton, however Tony did get there on time and I did get to sleep in my own bed that night.

For anyone thinking of doing the Offa’s Dyke path I’d thoroughly recommend it as it passes through such beautiful country, I’m certainly planning on going back for more.



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