This is another in my series of posts about walking the LDWA 100 in 2021.
The bad news is that the LDWA 100 won’t be taking place in Wales, which is a great shame for the organisers who had already put back their event by one year due to the health crisis. At the time, it seemed almost implausible that things wouldn’t have returned to normal by a year later, but events have gone in a direction that couldn’t be expected. So much time spent by the organising committee, but hopefully members will experience the route suggested in the future as a walk across a few days (unless they want to go round it in 48 hours…).
But, enough negativity as this is a positive event! It all means that there’s a Plan B, and this was the announcement from the LDWA:
“Due to the continued uncertainty about the COVID-19 pandemic the organising committee of the Y 100 Sir Fynwy have reluctantly concluded that it is impossible to hold the original Y 100 Sir Fynwy with any confidence that it will be able to take place.
To avoid a second year without a 100 mile event, with the agreement of the LDWA National Executive Committee, it has been decided to hold a Virtual Y 100 Sir Fynwy event. The main points are:
To be held on the weekend of 29th to 31st May 2021
Entrants to choose their own route of at least 100 miles
The 100 mile route to be completed in 48 elapsed hours
Open to all LDWA members
No qualifying event required
No limit on number of entrants
Successful completion will count towards 10/20/30/40 Hundred awards
Entry via SI Entries only, entry fee £20
Entrants will be required to provide evidence that 100 miles has been covered
Certificate and badge for successful completion
Completion of at least 50 miles in 24 elapsed hours will qualify for the 2022 Trans Pennine 100″
Virtual in this sense is being used to mean that people can follow their friends (or people who aren’t their friends) take part in their own personal 100-mile route. It still means that there will be a lot of brave people walking the 100 miles, that bit unfortunately isn’t virtual…. The plan that Nathan and I have is to walk Wherryman’s Way, meander around Whitlingham Lake a few times, go back home for a little rest (since we live nearby which is handy), then walk along some former railway lines. They’re handy these railway lines, flat and everything…. And there’s a lot of flat on this route, which makes things so much easier in my view. And our route will ensure that there are Greggs and pubs along the way, so we’ll have to time that carefully.
Dave Morgan, the courageous and energetic national chair, has made clear that walking on flat for 100 miles is very difficult. Well, he’s right, anyone can walk up and down hills, this will be a true challenge for those of us completing it in Norfolk…. But we don’t go on about our bravery.
So, this all means that our plan to complete the event will unfold during early 2021, including the route that we propose. I’m intending to see how many friends can line the route (to reward and comment on our bravery), becoming the new checkpoint crew and offering us food and drinks (and praise). I shall be spending a lot of time on ensuring that the food is nutritional and healthy, so there will be absolutely no junk. Indeed, this will require the bulk of our planning time, but food and drink is essential to finish a walk like this.
Will we complete it? Who knows, but there are some advantages for us walking it like this. This is my first 100, and to be honest, maybe my last. Remember Adam Dawson’s 100 interview? I subscribe to that theory. But, maybe I’ll become all “I must do this every year, it’s so fun”. But I doubt it, because 100 miles is a long way….
Anyway, I digress. Doing it this way means that we are unlikely (although I don’t put it past us) to get lost, since we’ll know the route. We can change the route to suit our needs and also, I understand, start a little earlier in the day than the usual fixed time. Home will be on the route, which helps in terms of having more socks, shoes and anything else to change into, giving that bit more flexibility than the actual event. I mentioned I hadn’t done a 100 before, and this is what will be useful here, I don’t have to carry everything ‘just in case’ I need it which is what I’d have done in Wales.
Checkpoints are wonderful to get moral support on, but we’ll do our best to recreate that experience with friends and anyone who else who is nearby and bemused. I’ll be taking photos and making short videos around the event, so people can compare my efforts with that of Dave Morgan, who will be doing the same. He’ll be all inspirational and have videos of valleys and lakes (and rain, he’s doing it in Wales) whereas I will concentrate on food and drink, as well as being grumpy. But, as they say (I don’t know who they are here) everyone walks the 100 in their own way.
Anyway, what can possibly go wrong?