Walk completed August 16, 2014

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

July 15, 2014 -- Day 30, Battle to Rye, 15 miles

Today’s walk was long, but once again, the pleasant weather, diversified terrain and route-finding challenges made it a wonderful day. Once leaving Battle, the trail dropped into a lovely woodland. Initially a bridleway, the trail was rutted and post-holed, the result of cyclists and horses having use the trail when it was very muddy. Today, the trail was mostly dry, with small muddy areas and a few pools of water that required some delicate footsteps.

Because I was on a minor footpath (the “1066 Country Walk”) mid-week, I didn’t expect to see any walkers. The first people I saw were three heavy equipment operators who were replacing drainage pipes. As a result of the winter floods, the existing drainage pipes filled with mud and debris. It wasn’t clear to me whether they had already been filled, and therefore didn’t effectively drain the runoff, or if there was so much run off into the River Brede that everything backed up and plugged the drains. In any event, the drainpipes were plugged and needed to be replaced. I asked the workers how much of the area was flooded, and they waved their arms pointing to the field in front of me. “The whole field was filled with water. You couldn’t walk through it.” It was a large field, and impressed upon me the amount of flooding that had occurred. Upon leaving the field at a road, I noticed a “For Sale” sign. (There was also one at an abandoned house on the other side of the field, but I didn’t pay much attention to it, because I’ve seen many “For Sale” signs.) What really caught my attention was the real estate agent’s description of the property.


The footpath continued on delightfully through woodlands, across pastures, through farm fields, rising and falling with the rolling terrain. It couldn’t get any better than this.


Well, actually it could. Up ahead, I spied a large group of walkers coming through the rye. (Actually it was a crop of beans, but folks coming through the rye sounds better than passing through the beans.) This was the largest group of walkers I’ve encountered since Much Wenlock. They described themselves as the U3A, or University of the Third Age – which basically means they are old folks who act like they are young. Hey, I’ve already cornered that market, although I suspect that they think of themselves as older than the 10-year-old I am.


Even 10-year-olds get tired, and before very long, my feet were getting sore, and I started thinking about arranging another mode of transportation. So far I haven’t had very good luck; yesterday’s Rolls Royce Silver Cloud came close – it was just a little out of my price range. Today, I came upon a vehicle I can afford. If this doesn’t attract the babes, I don’t know what will.


For those of you following along on maps, today’s walk went from Battle, though Westfield, Icklesham, Winchelsea, to Rye. From Icklesham, I left the 1066 Country Walk, and headed south to pick up the Royal Military Canal into Winchelsea.


Note: Group picture by John Southey

© 2014 Ken Klug

1 comment:

  1. That was a very large group of avid walkers you ran into, good for them, taking advantage of beautiful scenery and enjoying each other's company.
    As for you, any 10 year old gets tired after even 10 miles, so you are doing great.
    Have fun!