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Mr Bear is hungry

July 30, 2010 6:40 pm

Yesterday morning began with an hour and a quarter climbing up a steep scree on the western face of Pic Carlit – the highest mountain in the Eastern Pyrenees at 2921m, and the last time the HRP goes that high. The descent wasn’t generally as steep, but there were sections where it required scrambling using… Read more

Going solo

July 28, 2010 7:04 pm

The highest point in the UK is Ben Nevis, at 1344m. Since I left Lescun on 26th June (over a month ago), I hadn’t been below that level until yesterday, when Klaas and I hitched down to Ax-les-Thermes to find some decent shops. We had a pretty successful trip, finding fuel for the stoves, maps… Read more

End of the journey together…..

July 27, 2010 3:18 pm

Since the 4th of July, 23 days now, I’ve been dragged through these Pyreneen mountains by Jon… Here, in Hospitalet pres de l’ Andorre, we have decided to go our own way for the last 10 stages, which in a way I surely regret!! In the past weeks with many hard days Jon has proven… Read more

Section Four – Complete

7:17 am

The weather has been a constant source of concern now for the forty-three days since I began walking at the Atlantic (I may have already mentioned it once or twice) but one thing we haven’t had to deal with too much so far is extreme temperatures. The last few days though have been grey, windy… Read more

The Third Place

July 24, 2010 5:17 pm

After 37 days going back and forth across the border between France and Spain, we reached our third country on Thursday: Andorra. I’ve never been here before and don’t know a great deal about it, but I learnt the other day that the official language is Catalan. They learn that together with French and Spanish… Read more

The Perfect Storm

July 23, 2010 8:46 pm

During the first ten days I got used to walking in the rain, but I never had to pack up and set off in the rain, partly due to luck and partly because I stayed in refuges so much. For some reason walking in the rain is OK, but setting off is a different matter…. Read more

Birthday Calories

July 21, 2010 6:10 pm

Although section 4 of the HRP only has one staffed refuge, Klaas and I decided when we were making our plan in Arties that we’d take maximum advantage, to reduce the weight of food we had to carry. As it happened, the refuge fitted perfectly with my birthday, so yesterday at about 14:00 we arrived… Read more

There's always a bigger fish

July 19, 2010 7:23 pm

I used to work with a wise man called Mr Tipler, who had a phrase for every occasion. My favourite (apart from “beware the dangerous floater”) is “there’s always a bigger fish”, a saying that has proved itself time and again. Leaving Hendaye, the HRP felt pretty special, but over the last five weeks it’s… Read more

So…about those bears then…

July 18, 2010 5:00 pm

When we were in Gavarnie a few weeks ago trying to decide which route to take, we read a section of the guidebook that said “the choice of the HRP is a choice for challenge!” This has become a bit of catchphrase, and is now wheeled out whenever things get a bit tough. As far… Read more

If Carlsberg made campsites

July 17, 2010 4:30 pm

For the last three days we’ve been in the Vall d’Aran. We saw three villages there, and a remarkable proportion of each one looked new – very tastefully done so that it fitted in with the old buildings, but quite obviously new. It turns out that there are two reasons for this: the first was… Read more

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