Sunday, 18 October 2009

Walking Group Leader Assessment: Day 3 - On A High!

Another restless night; still thinking about my night nav error, but I was determined today to concentrate. We all agreed to take it easy, not to rush, cut down on the previous mistakes.

We met Sue at Holming Beam. Order of the day was that one person would navigate a leg, and we had to put away our compass and follow using just our map. At first, this was daunting, but once I had my eye in, I really started noticing the terrain. Each time Sue asked me a question about where we were, or what a certain feature was, I nailed it everytime! I was starting to enjoy myself! My leg of navigation took us across Conies Down Tor, handrailing our way up to Cowsic Head, then follwing a bearing across a large expanse of flat bog before descending the side of a re-entrant to the River Tavy. Luck (or intervention?) was definitely on my side when I looked for a crossing amongst the tall reeds and came upon one immediately. Then a turn right and ascending as we moved along the river, we came to my target, an old tinners hut! Job done!

Once we had all completed our legs, we had a different task. Map Memory! We were all given a target, told to look at the map and visualise how to get there. We then had to put the map away and go find it! Mine was another bloody cist! Headed south to Lydford Tor, turned left, lining my route up with Longaford Tor ahead of me and once I had got level with the firing range boundary, I started pacing 100 metres to the target. It wasn't perfect, but within a couple of minutes after the pacing, I spotted it!

Final task, and another go at map memory on the return to the cars; This time, a re-entrant and once again I got it spot on! I knew I could do no more, but I still wasn't sure if the nightmare was going to count against me. On the final leg back to the car, we were all called in turn to speak to Sue, where we learned our fate.

I was last to be told, and was proud when Sue praised me for getting everything right today. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

I passed along with Simon and Ken. Graham, unfortunately, was deferred.

Suffice to say, I'm still smiling! Two years after I had signed up for this award, and after a long hard summer of racking up the walks for my log book, it had all paid off!