The biggest difference between a hotel and a B&B has to be in the food they offer you at breakfast. I had a great room that simply based on the number of people it could sleep would probably cost an arm and a leg in some places but the choices I had for breakfast were meager compared to any of the B&Bs I stayed at. It was a simple Continental style breakfast with small cereal boxes of various cereals with a small plastic bottle of milk suitable for a bowl or two and that was about it. I joined Nicolas and Jeroen and we ate our small breakfasts together. A regular cooked breakfast definitely is leaps and bounds better but I suppose we could argue that this cereal breakfast is much more akin to what most of us have on the trail. It's just that when you spend good money for a room you want to end with a good meal too.
I decided that I was going to buy the Paramo Qito jacket the night before and so while Nicolas and I went to the outfitter so I could make the purchase and he could check on a couple things Jeroen visited the grocery to get a bit more food. When we met up a little later it was edging past 09:20. It was clear and the day was warming up nicely. We gathered our gaar and set out for the primarily road walking of the day.
Photo: Even a road walk can be pretty when you cross rivers like this. Granted this was the only water we would see today but the point is still valid.
We started out walking along fairly quiet roads that would take us in and out of small woods and past farm fields. It was easy walking through what I would classify as rural lands not unlike places in farm country you can find almost anywhere. It was easy going and as we walked we chatted about the events that had lead to this point and other things that you talk about during a lazy walk. Soon we found we had worked our way, via back roads, a few miles and we saw a couple other Challengers coming down the road. The couple were Lou and Phyllis LaBorwit. They were taking a more direct route to get where they were going. We walked together for a short time but soon we had to go our way and they went theirs. Soon clouds took over the sky and it started to spit just a little bit. Just enough that we felt we ought to put our raingear on. That gave me a chance to try out my new Paramo Qito.
Photo: I look spiffy in my new jacket. It was particularly good at keeping me comfortable when the wind picked up on this slightly cooler afternoon.
We paused at the top of a hill in Slewdrum Forest near Muckle Ord. It would be our last break of the day as we just had to walk down the gentle, though seemingly endless, hill to the Waulkmill Campground. It was early afternoon and seemed too early to stop but that was just what we did. We found our patch of grass by some picnic tables to set up our camp. That is what we got for our £9.00. Sure we got access to a bathroom and showers but it really isn't that much when you think about it. Of course perhaps I would have felt differently if I had felt like using the shower as Jeroen would do but I don't think so.
There is a restaurant next to the campground. I am not sure of its name though I heard it said several times. Nicolas and I went in there while Jeroen decided to take a nap. It was mid-afternoon and a few people and a dog were at this surprisingly large inn. We settled in for some tea and later beer. It was a nice place to kill time which is precisely what we were doing. I later had dinner, pretty good, at this eatery. I think if we had shown up just a little earlier than we had we would have found some other Challengers. Instead it was just us and a few locals. Not a bad way to spend the afternoon and early evening. It is raining now as I write this under my Trailstar bathed in the rather glaring glow of a lamp near ground level that is shining too brightly into my shelter. Still I think I will sleep well enough as although there are many campers here I think most of them are empty.
Photo: Our camp in the RV campground. We have the range of shelters here from Nicolas' Akto through Jeroen's Tarptent to my Trailstar.
Location: Waulkmill Camoground
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