By: Blonde One

This was the phrase that was repeated over and over yesterday as the Two Blondes tried to make a decision about which part of the stream/river to cross! It’s always a very tricky decision and if we have control over the route card we make sure that it is not necessary. Our routes will usually avoid river crossings at any cost. A few miles detour is always better! However, yesterday the route was set for us and required 2 river crossings. The walking was lovely and we kept, as always, to a good pace. Jelly Babies were flowing well, the company was excellent and the weather, for the most part, was clear and bright. What could possibly go wrong?! Our river crossing adventures took 3 very distinct forms and we are in the process of negotiating with each other about which is preferable.

1. The leap. This is what it says it is. It involves finding a narrow enough stretch of water and taking a run up and leaping across. Usually the bag will have been thrown across before hand.

2. The wade. This one means finding a shallow, slow enough stretch and simply walking through. The downside to this one is that invariably you get wet socks. This left me with waterlogged boots: upon returning home I thought I might actually have trench foot!

3. The balancing across slippery rock method. This is a very tricky one as rocks are never flat, always covered in wet moss and aren’t usually placed a comfortable pace apart. Using walking poles does help a lot though.

We tried all 3 methods yesterday and not one was satisfactory! With careful reflection this morning, I have come to the conclusion that as well as my emergency group shelter, glow sticks, survival bag, first aid kit, emergency rations, spare clothing, etc, etc, etc, I will now add to my kit and carry with me a portable bridge! This seems to be the only way for the Two Blondes to get across any water with no faffing.