The Allendale Challenge

The Allendale Challenge is a 26 mile walk through peat bog which starts and finishes in the Northumberland town of Allendale. The challenge is organised by Mountain Rescue to raise funds for their team.

This is still to date the furthest I have walked in a day (but hopefully that will change next year!). I was a bit worried about the distance of the walk but I knew the ascent was not that great so I figured I would manage it.

The challenge was a really enjoyable day, we were very lucky with the weather the sun was shining all day which definitely makes walking across a bog easier and more enjoyable.

All of the entrants started in one large group which was a bit stressful for me, being in a large crowds of people is something I struggle with a lot but everyone slowly spread out and as the day went on it seemed less and less crowded.

The day was amusing in few ways; hearing people squeal, shout, squeak and laugh (including myself) as they fell into the bog was great fun. The spectacular number of people with their gaiters on backwards was also a great source of amusement to me.

My head felt clear and I enjoyed the company of the people I was with, all people totally different from me in career, age and life experience but it was a joy to share this day with them.

Onwards we walked climbing through the bog in places stopping at various points to eat drink and chill for a few minutes, at one point stopping under the very welcome shade of a tarp to get out of the blazing sun, it really was such a warm day for the time of year.

Eventually we were on the home stretch and I was feeling pretty good about the fact I knew I would complete the challenge. Sadly a guy had collapsed on this stretch of road and was being cared for by mountain rescue who did an amazing job, it served as a reminder of how important it is to keep yourself and others you’re with safe and always look after each other.

I can truly say this was one of my favourite days walking this year and I can’t wait to do it all again next year, a good day out and raising money for a really good cause at the same time. I even got a certificate which is now proudly on display in my bedroom to remind me that I can do things that challenge me and succeed.

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