Wife and I walked just over 5 miles Sunday afternoon, guided by the GPS. We started at Arundel, West Sussex, parking the car on the road to the Black Rabbit pub, then walking alongside the river Arun to it. The path was pretty muddy. Then on the paved road to South Stoke, beyond which we breasted one hill, then on down to the river bank again. The Duke of Norfolk’s estate is walled, but The Monarch’s Way traverses it from Arundel itself to the gate in the wall where we joined it. The GPS was tracking us quite well, but overlaying the track on a digital map at home showed us walking along the middle of the river just before the climb to the top of the estate. We’re good, but not that good. It was a windy, overcast day, but that section of the South Downs is lovely. We promised ourselves a visit in summer. Light was failing now, but it was an easy walk downhill to Swanbourne Lake. The water fowl were grumbling about things and across the valley some teenage boys competed to be loudest. We needed the compass once, again in woodland; the torch several times as we came down off the Downs; the printed map pretty often. GPS handhelds seem to be fine in open areas but get far less precise in our kind of territory.
10 January, 2007