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Thursday, 18 April 2013

In search of just a bit of adulation

Marilyn bagging has no kudos. I mean when you talk to people. Many have heard of Munros, and quie a few grasped the concept of walking the Welsh boundary, except for that frequent conversation:

"Where did you start?"


"Where will you finish?"



But Land's End to John 'oGroats was instantly digested by all, leading to sympathy, goodwill, free camping, and many cups of tea.

Marilyns are a dead duck. Nobody has heard of them. Nobody understands when you try to explain, much less are they interested, so I've started saying I am climbing some hills on a list. Even I found it slightly difficult to get my head round when I first read about them, and I'm still not sure why certain very pointy all the way round hills are not on the list.

Having said that there are rewards a plenty in this pursuit.

Hardown Hill (SY 405 942) this morning gave me my first view of a slow worm, albeit it was dead. Views of other worthy looking surrounding peaks and through to Lyme Regis, and a backdrop of the sea made for a good start.

The journey to Pilsdon Pen (ST 413 011) was tiresome on a network of narrow country lanes with few passing places involving reversing incidents and a couple of near misses with hooligans driving too fast. The summit is a splendid classic cone with a well preserved Iron Age fort. The labour involved in digging the surrounding ditches must have been daunting. Certainly a worthwhile summit.

Win Green (ST 952 206) was a doddle. The road runs up to 260m, and a rough track, used by all in cars, takes you to within two or three hundred yards of the 277m summit. The viewfinder said you could see The Isle of Wight and The Needles but I think you would have needed a good pair of binoculars.

- Slow worm (late, dead or deceased) on the ascent of Hardown Hill

Lyme Regis just visible in the distance

Pilsdon Pen

Win Green summit

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The Crow said...

I find your adventures commendable, especially considering your recent knee surgery.

There is also something romantic about them - bordering on the admiration one feels for mountain climbers, who endure hardships and dangers for the sheer thrill of conquering the land. I am reminded of the response someone made when asked why he climbed an especially risky peak, to which he responded, "Because it's there."

I think there is something noble about pushing oneself to do what isn't especially necessary, to push one's limits, conquer fears, overcome challenges. If, as a side benefit, you manage to have some fun, meet interesting new people, be awe-struck by the natural world through which you travel, well, that's icing on the cake, gravy on the biscuit (not the cookie).

You go, guy! And I'll follow vicariously through reading your posts.

The Crow said...

PS: the slow worm looks like a legless lizard, or a glass snake. Is it truly a worm?

Sir Hugh said...

The Crow - for me this is a sort of reluctantly relaxing holiday. Compared with a two month backpacking trip I am only doing modest walks and have the comfort, physical and menta,l of returning to a well equipped and comfortable caravan each day.

Your natural science knowledge triumphs. The slow worm is also known as the legless lizard. Apparently it has wider distribution in the south of England where I am now which probably accountants for me not having seen one before, but in any case they are reputed to be secretive.