The weather was beautiful. Blue skies, sunshine, but not so hot that it felt like hard work. The scenery was stunning, and the company was excellent.
I declare Just Walk 2012 a roaring success!
(Although I was mildly amused to find a 2010 tag on my event t-shirt.)
Before I go any further, I should say that it’s not too late to sponsor me. All monies (of whatever size – every penny counts) go to Parkinson’s UK, and the process is quite painless using JustGiving:
All of my expectations were met or exceeded. I actually got there early (45 minutes early! – plenty of time to say hello at the Parkinson’s UK stand). In fact, I was so early that I was mistaken for a late arrival for the 40 or 60 km walks. I did meet my friend at the venue, and she was there to see me off, to welcome me back and to accompany me to a delightful local hostelry where we sipped soft drinks; I did complete the walk (at almost precisely the time that was suggested for an “average” walker), and I spent time during the walk with four or five lovely groups of people.
As for the photographs, there are one or two scattered around this post. The photo-worthy views were restricted slightly by the wooded terrain; perhaps the most noticeable difference between the South Downs (as represented by this walk) and the various Downs in North Hampshire is that the former have more trees.
I did think that the South Downs were a little more domesticated than the wilder of Hampshire’s Downs (the ridge that includes Watership Down is largely untouched, thanks to the auspices of the local horse-racing community who still exercise their horses on the hill-top plateau). I noticed more agriculture and less ridged erosion in Sussex. But I did notice, in the villages on the valley floor, that you get that same, slightly disconcerting sense of the hills looming up behind the houses like curved green walls, that I get here (maybe it’s just me?).
Some of the landscape shots that I managed to take on the walk (click to see bigger, clearer versions):
Other posts about Just Walk:
- All Ready for Tomorrow…
- To Basingstoke, and Back, on Foot!
- One week to go!
- A day on the North Downs
- Only 3 weeks to go!
- Parkinson’s Awareness Week
- Just Walk 2012
- Just Walk 2011 – or, what turned out to be my Solo Walk 2011 (post includes links to other 2011 posts)