|Ready to go.....|
I know that many of my ex-military colleagues reading this will want to say that they would never use a GPS out on the hills, preferring to stay true to map and compass. Until this event I had been much the same. However, The Spine Race is all about making progress, getting closer to the finish line with every step, as quickly and as efficiently as possible. At night, with the freezing rain falling and you are striding out along a rock-strewn path which has turned into a frozen toboggan-run, a quick check on the GPS screen that you are still on the correct path, heading in the correct direction, is much quicker than using map and compass - particularly if you need to use reading glasses to look at the map. The marsh and bog lands that we had to cross sap your energy and forces your body to head off in unpredicted, random directions - but a quick confidence check of the backlit screen of a GPS will help minimise the effects of this and keep you on route. By day and in good visibility, map and compass are still my preferred method, but as my cognitive function became impaired due to fatigue it was important to back this up with regular checks on the GPS. There were times when I became completely disorientated and occasions when I went off route (those of you following my tracker online know when that was), it was important to be able to use both traditional and modern navigation techniques for this event.
|Can you spot me asleep in the middle of CP2?|
|Ankle and foot support.|
I have to make a special mention here to Neil. He was not a competitor, just a friend of a friend on Facebook who found out about the Spine passing close to his farm. Neil came to give me and others encouragement on several occasions along the route. We had never met before, but he is ex-RAF like myself and I am pleased to now call him a friend. Thank you for your support Neil.
|On the left a swollen knee, on the right a double swollen knee!!|
|Steve's Fundraising Page|
In the meantime, does anyone have any ideas for my next fundraising challenge?