2 friends and the coast to coast walk

2 More Down and Just Two Left by theshed
November 29, 2007, 8:55 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

So it looks like it’s only me and Michelle keeping each other company during the walk.  Winter and Tha pulled out the other day claiming a social clash.  I just think they got scared of the challenge! 🙂

Hopefully they’ll join us on a day or two since I was looking forward to spending some time with them.  It was a good excuse to see friends who we don’t get to see much of.

One of the good things that has come out of it is that it’ll be a little easier to organise with just the two of us.  That’s not going to make up for the lack of companionship though.  I’m a little sad.

Going to take our mind off of it by walking to work tomorrow if the weather is OK.  Been fancying doing it for a while but it doesn’t seem such a nice prospect at 6am!


It’s Official, I Don’t Like Wind! by theshed
November 25, 2007, 6:41 pm
Filed under: exercise, training, weather

We decided to combine two of our favourite past times today…walking and eating. There’s a really nice little cafe in Birchington, Birchington Ice Cream Parlour, and since Birchington is just round the coast from Ramsgate and there’s a coastal path that link the two we thought we’d give it a go.

If you fancy following in our footsteps and would like directions then the walk roughly followed the Thanet Viking Coastal Trail. The trail was originally designed for cyclists so there are some deviations but you’ll find your way OK. The joy about a coastal path is that you don’t really need directions…basically follow the coast but don’t fall into the sea.

We set off about 9:30am after the weather reports had said that it would be a fine day with a light breeze. Oh how wrong can they be? We walked along the clifftops of Ramsgate heading towards Broadstairs. This bit of the walk is one we do a lot since there is also a nice cafe, Cafe Bello, in Broadstairs and when the tide is out you can walk along the beach all the way to Broadstairs to grab a nice latte and a panini. Once you get past Broadstairs you head out past North Foreland Lighthouse and past Joss Bay. Then it’s through Kingsgate, round the Captain Digby pub and on to Cliftonville. Up to that point all had been well, then once we rounded the corner past the clifftop edge of the golfcourse the wind really took hold. It didn’t stop either. We must have walked for about 2 hours just head on into a really strong wind. I would go on and run you through the rest of the walk but a picture says a thousand words so you can have a look below.

Needless to say we avoided the sea-level walk and stuck to the top of the cliff!

Link to the photo set on Flickr.

Next Decision by gleavem
November 20, 2007, 4:51 pm
Filed under: first steps, itinerary

Ok, so we’ve planned an itinerary (provisional) and start date, started training, decided to B&B rather than camp….next question is which baggage transfer service?!     Seems to me there are 4 to choose from:

Sherpa van



Northwest walks

Prices vary a bit; by my estimate it’ll be between £70 and £105 per bag.

Anyone got any preferences / recommendations / warnings? There doesn’t seem to be much on the forums.

So many decisions!!!


Our second proper training walk! by gleavem
November 19, 2007, 9:19 pm
Filed under: training, Uncategorized

Spurred on by the success of our first proper training walk, and feeling the need to begin to practice navigation and route planning, we decided to walk from Ramsgate to Canterbury – our longest walk to date! We purchased the appropriate OS map, plotted our route, gathered our walking gear, skipped our lay-in Saturday morning lay-in and set off for Canterbury at 9am.

We’d estimated that it was about 17 miles, and confidently thought we’d whizz through it and make it to Canterbury in time for a mooch around the shops…as you’ll see, we were a little optimistic!

Ramsgate Harbour

From Ramsgate harbour the walk started with a nice stroll along the cliff top; views of France in the far distance! We turned inland at Cliffsend and followed the railway to Minster (in places quite a disappointing path, in a sort of ditch between track and farmland). West of Minster we headed south to meet the River Stour, and followed the river to Plucks Gutter, where we considered stopping for lunch, but decided to press on.
The Three Cooling Towers Eventually the damn chimneys dissapeared from view, which had been making us feel like we weren’t getting anywhere! We crossed the river to join the Saxon Shore Way, linking up with the Stour Valley Walk, as we headed towards Grove Ferry. Here we stopped for a well-deserved break and some lunch – delicious sandwiches at the Grove Ferry Inn. We made it to GF about 1pm, and realised we were unlikely to make it to Canterbury anytime soon! Consequently we made a plan to get to Fordwich, see how the light was holding out and then decide whether to continue to Canterbury or hop on the train home at Sturry.

Some Mushrooms

We continued to follow the Stour Valley Walk through Stodmarsh and some nice woods where I developed an interest in fungi. I just kept spotting mushrooms and found myself very curious as to which were edible…anyone any ideas on these?
The end of the walkWe eventually reached Fordwich a little before 4pm, so decided to pick up our pace and hop on the 4 o’clock train home…light was fading, feet a little sore, and we were going out for dinner at 7 (which as you can see from Sid’s earlier post we well deserved – 2984 cals? my word!) I must say it was a little disheartening that a journey which took us 6hours to walk, took about 15mins on the train! But all the same we felt very pleased with ourselves, and can’t wait for our next walk!


Is Two Weeks Long Enough? by theshed
November 11, 2007, 9:44 pm
Filed under: just for fun

I’ve just been looking at Kevin and Liz’s photo’s on Flickr and I’m not sure two weeks is going to cut it really.  There’s so many beautiful places on route it seems a shame that we’re going to be rushing by them.  I have a habit of when I’m walking of just focussing on getting to where I’m going.  I really should enjoy the journey a little bit more, pick my head up and look around.  That’s going to be my aim the next time I go for a walk.

Walking must get you fit! by theshed
November 9, 2007, 10:48 pm
Filed under: exercise, inspiration

One of the reasons Michelle and I started this whole walking adventure was because I needed a challenge to spur on some weight loss. It’s all fair enough saying you need to lose weight but at the end of the day if you don’t have a reason to do it then you might as well not bother.

Whilst I was researching weight loss and the various gym routines and exercises that help you along the way I read a lot about something called LISS, Low Intensity Steady State. Basically it says that if you exercise at a low intensity then you’ll be able to exercise for a long time and therefore burn more calories.

So with this in mind on our second training walk, the longest one yet and the one Michelle promised she’d blog about but still hasn’t, I decided to wear my heart rate monitor to see how many calories I got through. And the results…

At just over the half-way mark we sat down in the pub and…

Break Time at Grove Ferry

…that’s right, 1655 calories. That’s pretty impressive even if I do say so myself.

Then at the end…

The final stats

…that’s 2984 calories after 6 hours of walking (we took 50 mins out for lunch) with an average heart rate of 113.  Not bad for a days work.

Anyway, that’s all.  I was quite chuffed so thought I’d blog.


Our First Donation by theshed
November 6, 2007, 8:58 pm
Filed under: charity

We have our first donation.  A big thank you to Chris for starting us off.  Hopefully we’ll do you proud.  Cheers.