Our first 7 days? Hot, sticky, often windy, gloves in the morning (1st hour), sometimes adidas downy jacket throughout the night.
Holding up well. 3 blisters all on left foot. In fact my wee toes are trying to create a new webbing feature and join one up to another. I got my secret pink penknife out and scissored them apart. (Bowke #1).
Loving them. They stop my clown shoes from becoming sand pits. I’ve got size 8 decathlon approach shoes (I’m size 7) and they were performing amazingly ( no dead toe nails and some still retain a hint of polish pink). I’ve lost two bits of Velcro from my shoes (my peacock gaiters attach to this) but blessed be the Hiker Boxes I found replacement Velcro when I helped clear out boxes on day 7 at Warner Springs.
My oasics sweatband and red fleece gloves are official biohazards. Their are slug and snail trails all over them, as I wipe my gross dribbles from my impressive asthma hay fever induced morning snotrockets. I’ve toyed with the Trail name of Ivor/ Eoin/Hamish the Engine. Cory has the first shift as we start walking at 6am (first light) in case he gets a rocket splat from me (bowke #2).
Porridge for breakfast until Cory couldn’t take it anymore and started having Ramen (super noodles). Lunch could Be tortilla wraps With tuna ( foil Wrapped like cat food sachets) or thousand island sauce and crisps on a wrap ( you can take the girl Out of Plean), dinner Ramen pimped with precooked Sausage, or mashed potatoes and sausage. One day we got Trail Magic from Ned the Navigator who left the trail and emptied his food bag. We took the huge block of cheese of him (and clif bars). The cheese didn’t survive the first lunch break. Snacks are nuts& raisins ( trail mix), clif bars, nature valley bars, crisps if we’ve just left town and cookies!! Our first cookies were ‘oat’ cookies which on tasting were ginger nuts! Next lot were chocolate chip ( they didn’t last long). Next we’re rip Off $6 plus tax chip ahoy chewy chocolate chip cookies (not as good as the cheap ones). Then at our tent in Warner Springs more trail magic a guy came up with two boxes of cookies and asked which we wanted! I’d only just said to Cory I missed have a cookie waiting for the water to heat for which ever ‘just add water’ meal we had planned!
Day 1 there were day hikers who handed us each a little baggy of M&Ms!!! Paradise.
Fantastic things. Gained so far (as much as I can remember) platypus water bottle, 4 litre water filter bottle, Velcro (gaiters), zinc oxide cream ( Cory’s chafing and my destroyed hay fever nose and dried crusty lips), pop tarts (to try), Knor rice mix, salmon sachet!
Stinking and filthy by the end of day 1. The first two days we were blessed with a creek at our chosen end of day campsite. We used my tinkerbell handmit turning her brown as we gave ourselves a good flannelling. There is a massive amount of satisfaction in moving dirt around the body! Special care is taken to air the feet at every sitting break. This allows our swollen feet to air and perhaps shrink again and also dry out the socks and shoes. Taking off your shoes could in theory attract a nearby testosterone crazy male skunk. Cory has tried to kill me a few times with his arm pits but I just counter attach with mine 🙂 When there is no water I try to wet wipe my bits. Cory said a pack of 80 UN scented baby wipes was over kill… until day 3 when he was in about his baby bits with my baby wipes! We can draw pictures in the dust on our skin. Even more interesting if we mixed it into a paste with our suncream!
Two Tshirts for me. One long sleeve ex running Tshirts (Liverpool half marathon), one short sleeve ( edinburgh marathon.) they were headed to the charity shops so we thought we would mostly take Tshirts we weren’t going to be precious with. I have my sponsored adidas terrex trousers (now worn in bed to keep worn as well as during the day to keep warm sometimes if a mountain day), my blue shorts, adidas downy jacket and adidas gortex rain jacket. I have washed my clothes in streams, bucket wash ( Luke warm water at Warner springs, after 1/2 an hour and four water changes the water was less brown and I thought ‘ that I’ll do it!). And a sink. I have two pairs of pants and two pairs of socks. When I’m ‘washing’ my clothes I’ll wear my goretex or downy jacket and adidas trousers or just my knickers to ‘hide my shame’. We already know I have one bra but its perfect. Comfy, stretchy and quick dry. Quick dry is most important. Draped over a nearby tree we try to have things dry for bed time as we will probably need to put them on at night when the temperature plummets or into a bag to make a pillow.
Roasting!! Freezing!!! By 8am in the morning your on fire by 3 your dead. Temperatures in the day vary from 25 to 35 degrees centigrade. At night it’s cold. Sleep with your duvet Jacket and minus 12 sleeping And with silk liner and Cory’s long johns or my adidas trousers on.
We need approximately 1 litre of water per person per 5 miles minimum. Plus one litre for each meal time. We work out each evening where the water is, how far we expect to travel, how much we will need to carry until the next ‘certain’ water source. Water has come from creeks ( streams), out door fawcets, huge tanks, water caches, skanky green slime streams. We treat all water by using either our gravity filter or chlorine tablets ( unless it’s from someone’s home!).
Who have sponsored us already with helping our chosen charity Syria Relief. If you would like to help too…