Preparing to walk the St Olavsleden route


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Published: June 18th 2018
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Everything is gradually coming together for the start of my pilgrimage walk following the St Olavsleden route to Trondheim.

Physical: I might do one more walk with a loaded pack next weekend, but last Sunday's walk was pretty challenging, and everything performed well. Elaine gave me a hand with some fiddly adjustments, and I loaded up with 13kg in the pack on Sunday. Erick had a Meetup walk planned into Mt Rob Roy, on the south-east side of Canberra. The loop was about 12km with 650m of climb. We walked first to Big Monks and then across to the Rob Roy Nature Reserve.

Mental: While one might walk alone, there are always people in towns and other places one stays. But this is quite different to walking with a companion. I know that this can be difficult, and I that I will need to take care to maintain my energy and focus for many days in a row.

Spiritual: My past pilgrimage walks have been an opportunity to reflect on my position on dimensions of my life beyond what might be explained in purely 'scientific' terms. I expect this pilgrimage will allow similar opportunities for quiet reflection. Sometimes these just happen, but I plan to make some time each day for that as well.

Other Preparations: There has been some procrastination about gear and clothing. I did need to buy some consumables, but otherwise I have no excuse to go out and buy kit for this trip. At this stage, it is getting things out of my packing list rather than into it that will be important to keeping my pack weight down to a reasonable level. All my clothing, even the newer items like the trekking pants I bought in Norway last year, has been used on walks around the ACT in all sorts of conditions. So I am happy that it is unlikely to make more than a little difference which items I choose for inner, middle and outer layers. The choice of rain jacket is a little more vexed, but I think even that is pretty much settled. If it rains during the week, my preferred jacket might get one last test.

I will probably get a new SIM for my mobile when I arrive in Sweden, and let family and friends know what that number is. Otherwise I will be contactable by email when I have internet access.

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24th June 2018

Good luck!
Looking forward to updates every so often, Doug ... and lots of luck. Stay safe!

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