Monday, April 19, 2010

Swords Into Ploughshares, Railways Into Canals?

26 days to the start line.

Having spent several afternoons going over the entire route through France and dividing it into roughly 30 kms sections, trying to ensure that there is a campsite always at the end of the section (and failing on that point) I now know that I will be walking 1300 kms in France. Together with almost 700 kms in England, that means I will be walking about 2,000 kms altogether - a figure I have been bandying about, but which I had hoped to undercut somewhat.

Today I tested my foot on the 32 kms walk from Mirepoix to home. The foot seemed to hold up well.

I hope not too much of my route northwards will be on tracks like the one pictured. This is part of the Voie Verte near Mirepoix. Since the track opened (it was converted from a redundant railway line) the whole 37 kms from Mirepoix to Lavelanet has been well drained and pretty dry. But some time before Christmas this section of the track changed character. It had clearly been flooded - I can only presume by an agricultural irrigation accident, which has covered the track in inches of clay. Not only is the clay glutinous and slippery, but it collects rain and prevents it from draining away. Maybe they are turning the Voie Verte into a canal?

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