A Season on the South Downs

It has not been a year of hikes on big trails, but in the background, I have been covering the miles on days out walking on the South Downs. The Downs have grown on me slowly, but as a I look back on 9 months of walking there, I realise that they have become an important place of escape and an unexpected adventure.

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GR5 Countdown

With train tickets booked we are only a few weeks away from starting the GR5. In this post I talk about our preparations for the trail, the options available and my thoughts on section-hiking the trail (as opposed to thru-hiking).

Across Sussex on the New Lipchis Way

Blessed with two glorious spring days, I set out with a trusty Jack Russell to walk the 39 mile New Lipchis Way from north to south through West Sussex. It was a stunning and diverse journey that took us deep into ancient rural landscapes and through the heart of the South Downs National Park, before descending to the Cathedral city of Chichester and finally the sea at East Head.

GR1 Week 7: Misty, Mysterious Basque Hills

In Week 7 we left the broad horizons of Navarra behind, and climbed into the verdant, misty hills of the Basque country. The locals we met were convinced we had lost the Camino, but we were glad to be back on lonelier trails doing our own thing, as is our wildpilgrim way! There was lots of waiting for the rain to stop and plenty of time for tea- drinking and contemplating as we reflected on how the hiking-life deepens our sense of time and the value of unnoticed things.