I have spent much of the past couple of weeks both literally and figuratively gearing up for this little ramble through Britain. I have sought the advice of friends much more skilled in mountaineering than I am, and they have zealously motor-mouthed lists of technical equipment and names of synthetic fabrics, all of which might stand to serve some overly-specialised function. And as ever in the free market, this one does something better but that one does another thing best – yet both pale in comparison to the other one which does whatnot.
Also, as things start to take shape, the immense difficulty of walking through Scotland in Winter has become very clear [sub ‘difficulty’ for ‘stupidity’]. Even though I’m hopeful of finding accommodation on each night of my walk, the weather is so unpredictable that it makes much sense to make plans for emergencies [sub ’emergencies’ for ‘my poor navigation’]. So amongst my most happy purchases over the past fortnight have been: a completely waterproof backpack, a pop-up emergency survival shelter, and a mountain rescue approved survival tube. I’m not quite sure how or when to deploy these last couple of acquisitions, but I think that something about the word survival was attractive.