Distance - 18.5 Km - 11.50 miles
Time Taken - 6.5hrs (inc. breaks)
Assent - 138m
I woke with a slightly sore head (it was strong cider!) and a sore foot. So all was looking good for the day. The weather was again overcast but not cold. My legs and back felt good, suprisingly considering I had never walked 16.5 miles before. Nick had a very sore shoulder but had identitied the problem (Rucksack's load lifters were uneven, once adjusted he didn't have any issues). Todays route involved a 1.5mile walk along lanes until we got back on the peddars way, this section passed fairly quickly and once warmed up we kept a decent pace.
Once we were back on the trail things didn't change much, a further 2 miles along country roads, whilst quiet, they were hard and quite boring. The guide book uses the description - 'The walking is easy, if tedious' and it wasn't wrong. A mile through fields led into North Pickenham before it was back onto roads for half a mile. We finally broke away from the hard roads along Procession Lane which was a nice mile and a half until the A47.
A cheeky break in the McDonalds on the A47 didn't raise the spirits too high and a Big Mac might not of been the energy food I required. This day was turning into a big drag and the next 5 miles did little to change it. Whilst the roads were quiet, they were at the end of the day hard roads. So little more than nice fields, nice hedges, and nice farms. I'm not saying there was anything bad on the route, it was just becoming a boring slog to get to our hostel for the night.
|Nick justifying carrying sunglasses!|
I really began to struggle approx. 8 miles into the day. Both feet were tender (in addition to the blisters), the route was uninspiring, and I was having a energy crash and felt very lethargic. At this point I think Nick was wondering whether I would make it to Hunstanton.
The village of Castle Acre was a pleasant end to the walk, a nice ford marks the start of the village, with nice priory ruins giving interesting views. The stop for tonight was at the Old Red Lion Hostel. This was a quiet, well kept, independent hostel and was directly on the route. It was nice, clean and airy and very welcoming if slightly eccentric! Recommended!
The Ostrich pub was just around the corner, and the food was above good 'pub grub' standard, a couple more ciders and a pub quiz were taken before wandering back to the hostel and feet repair. I now had a blister on each foot, both at the impact point of my heel strike. Both drained before a nice nights kip!