Sunday, 6 November 2016

And so it begins.

"Many thanks for your application for the 38th Great Outdoors Challenge. We are delighted to inform you that you have a place on the 2017 Event".

Oops. I might  not have believed that I could be accepted. After all, in my application I generously confessed that I've never been to Scotland (but I have, however, hiked a lot in Lapland where some parts are almost identical to Scotland with the bog, the wind and the rain and the snowy fell tops) and that I've got rheumatoid arthritis (which, however, has not stopped me from hiking in Lapland, or Cornwall with all of its glorious ups-and-downs for that matter). Apparently I was deemed qualified enough, and so I am now in for a whole new hiking experience. So exciting! 

Six months to prepare. Need to acquire paper maps and download e-maps. Need to plan and submit the route. Need to book plane tickets and accomodation for start and finish. Need to sort out, and quite possibly buy new gear, at least a solo tent. Need to decide whether to buy new boots and if so, break them in. Need to beg my boss for 2.5 weeks of vacation time in May. Need to organize a caretaker for my dog. Need to be in better shape. Need to stop panicking and start planning! Scotland, oh you land of the brave, I am coming!

Hiking in Kaldoaivi wilderness area, Finland, in Midsummer 2014.
The weather is balmy +2 C with strong winds. Adequate training for Scotland, eh?

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