Hiking – The next step
I have been thinking about my hiking over the winter months and wondered what the next logical step would be to keep myself interested and motivated. Having prepared for the TGO challenge with a 4 day hike of the Wolds Way (80 miles) I am happy that my thru-hiking is going in the right direction. But there is still something missing from my day hikes that I need to address.
I watched a video trailer many months back of a Suunto X10 watch and is showed a hiker bombing along a mountain ridge at almost jogging pace with two poles in hand. Ever since then I have been considering changing my outlook on day hikes to match this new style of hiking. I want to go faster, longer and climb higher and this seems the perfect solution. It may sound sick to some people but I want to push my body up and down hillsides and mountains, really testing myself along the way. I considered trail running and mountain biking but neither struck a cord with me.
Over the winter months I have been quietly getting fitter shedding over a stone, I purposely included an intense workout on a stepper machine 3 times a week to build up strength in my legs.
I have been reading religiously the blog of Andrew Surka from America who has been pushing the boundaries of thru-hiking with his amazing Ultra long / Ultra fast hikes of most of the major trails throughout the world. He has been my inspiration for this change in direction to my hiking.
Poles are another area I have been reading up on to increase the pace of my hikes. I had wanted to buy some Alpkit poles but they are out of stock. So I have decided to buy some cheapo poles from go outdoors to test out before I take the plunge into uber-pricey poles.
Quick navigation is also something I desire so a GPS would be handy. I considered the Navigator 2800 but opted for a less selfish option of a family tent. My mate from www.didnothingfatal.co.uk contacted me today and is sending me a Garmin Foretrex 101 to play with over the summer – what a guy !!! I will make sure it takes me out into the hills each month pushing me harder.
So now all I need is a break in my work cycle to get me out again, its 3 weeks until the TGO and I am hoping to get a long distance hike in before.
Possible targets – Welsh 3000, Y3P, National 3P, Oggie8, Edale Skyline, LWW, the list goes on.