I amazingly finished with no blisters due to my new Lowa boots which were remarkably comfortable and fitted perfectly. Of course I had the usual aches, sore muscles and sore feet, but I never had to use my Compeed. Other equipment which proved essential were my Komperdell Carbon Ultralight walking poles, Marmot jacket, REI Duckback pack cover and Smartwool socks with Wright inner layers. What a pleasure it is to have good equipment. Through all the rain and wind, I always kept dry. Since 2006, I have learned to attach the pack cover so that rain never breached the pack and there is no way it can blow loose, snag a wire and take me down (as in 2006); this was a very important lesson learned.

The day to day expenses were very reasonable considering I slept in a bed and had a roof over my head every night with a full meal in my belly. In fact, some of the b&bs were extremely nice and some of the pub meals were outstanding. The b&bs averaged £30 per night, the two hostels with breakfast averaged about £20 pounds per night (surprisingly high). My daily pub expenses ran about £14 for food and drink. Incidental expenses were very incidental.

One thing that has made a big impression on me is how difficult and, actually, dangerous the C2C can be especially under severe weather conditions. These conditions can occur at any time and one should always be prepared. They can tax a person physically and mentally and disorient anyone. Rains and winds can last for days and days, but the beautiful days are truly beautiful. Either way, the experience is unique and unforgettable.

The challenges I went through to finish each day, the unique experiences I had, the wonderful fellow walkers and B&B hosts I met made the walk unforgettable. The days were a good mix of stimulating company and walking alone with ample time for reflection and meditation. I only wish I could have traded that Striding Edge day for better weather.....and the Greenup Edge day....and the Haystacks day. But that is all part of the challenges and a great part of the memories. Now its time to find another adventure to look forward to and strive toward.

I'll leave you with a quote from my adventurous friend in Kunming, China, Jin Fei Bao, who has just finished climbing the tallest mountains on all seven continents.

"There is no mountain higher than the heart and there is no road longer than footsteps.....
each adventure is a kind of heart practice and soul distillation......
might all people feel the challenges, pleasures and reflections that result from outdoor adventures".

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