Last weekend our house was full to the gunnels. My brother Russell was visiting for a couple of days and I decided that we two should escape the crowd. I had always intended to walk the Boudicca Way, a medium distance walk of nearly 40 miles. It breaks up fairly neatly into 4 sections. We would trial section 2.
Photographs of the relevant OS map sections below show the walk we should have taken below. In practice our planning went awry.
|Pulham to Tyrell's Wood|
|Tyrell's Wood to Tasburgh|
Fortunately we have public transport between Harleston and Pulham Market, which was the beginning of this stage. Perhaps our first mistake was to rely on maps downloaded from the web rather standard OS maps. In fact Russell had handwritten our route onto A4 sections of an OS style Map For an example see below.
|Hand written route onto OS map printed from the WWW.|
It was a warm summer day and the first part of the route went smoothly. I even had the presence of mind to take a snap of a rather interesting wooden footbridge.
|Russell looks back across the interesting wooden bridge|
Once through the wood we met up with one of the myriad of small roads that meander the East Anglian countryside. We should have turned right off this after about 100 yards. We missed it. In fact we were looking left rather than right. By the time we had reached one of the many back roads into Long Stratton that I recognised, I knew we were wrong. Fortunately we were close to a junction with both roads named. There’s a rarity. I was able to locate our position. We turned towards the authorised route.Russell however was still not convinced I was right. I suspect the “little brother syndrome”. We found ourselves heading towards a wooded area on both sides with signed footpath heading left (north).
|We turn left off Mill Road|
|Short cut to the Rectory at Morningthorpe|
Our next error was fatal. We knew we had to turn right off the route and came across a likely candidate as shown below.
|Should we have taken the lane to the right|
We went along Brick Kiln Lane. There was no sign of the authorized route and by the time we arrived at Church (yet another route to Long Stratton) I was getting tired and hungry. The need for food overrode all other considerations.
|The Queen's Head, Long Stratton|
It's surprising what refreshment can do. We decided to work out way back to Tyrell's Wood in the hopes of finding where we made our original routing error. Eventually we returned to the point on our route where we should have turned off. Perhaps it was not entirely our fault. The growing season this year has been has been warm and wet. Everything is overgrown and the sign post for the correct route was more or less invisible.
|Obvious when you know it|
Measuring distance on maps
There is no doubt that we made a lot of mapping errors on this walk, But I wanted to find how much of a difference it made to the distance walked, The first map below shows the main mistake and the correct route.The next two images employ the Google Maps measuring tool to estimate the two distances.
|The authorized route|
|Russell and Stephen's short cut|
In fact, according to these measurements, we skipped about 2/3 miles. Also we didn't even attempt the last couple of miles to Tasburg. In our defence though, we did walk a further 3.62 miles from Long Stratton to Goodies Farm shop.
|Long Stratton to Goodies|