2009-05-31 51 -0

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Sun 31 May 2009 in 51,-0:
51.9138364, -0.5325219

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[edit] Location

Sited in a wood alongside a road near Thorn, just north of Houghton Regis, Bedfordshire.

[edit] Participants

[edit] Expedition

[edit] Background

My first attempt to GeoHash was supposed to happen the day before this at a location only 10 miles away - on the Friday I discovered how close it was and threatened to my colleague Ed that I'd do it (walking the walk (literally!) rather than just talking the talk). However, a drink-fuelled Friday night put paid to that and I wrote that plan off in shame.

The Saturday night I mentioned to my friend Abby (who has also threatened to partake) that I'd not managed to do it but that I'd consider giving the next day a go instead. I don't like being defeated. We'd walked 19 miles together a few months prior whilst she was preparing to go trekking in Cambodia, so I kind of knew my limits.

The next morning I threw caution to the wind and set off towards Houghton Regis - GeoHash Droid claims it's a tip over 14 miles from my home and liberally factoring in what I thought would be about 20% additional by taking a wonky route would be more than achievable.

[edit] Route

I crudely planned to head west and occasionally skip north in order to stay north of Luton.

In actuality I took the footpath under the A1(M) motorway out to the west of Stevenage towards Langley. Along track and roads to St Paul's Walden and through fields to Kings Walden. Stopped for lunch on roadside and carried on into Great Offley, under the A505 to Lilley, through South Beds golf course and skirted across the top of Luton. Continued over the Chiltern train line and the M1 and finally across fields towards Thorn.

After 6h 17m (5h 28m moving time), walking home wasn't really feasible. I called for a taxi to collect me from Dunstablians Rugby Club to Leagrave train station, took a short train to Luton and then a bus back home to Stevenage. There was obviously more walking involved, but I stopped the GPS when I was as close as I thought I could feasibly get.

See the full route I've uploaded on Google Maps

[edit] Distance

Stevenage to Hashpoint - 21.7 miles, walking
Hashpoint to Leagrave station - ~3 miles, taxi
Leagrave station to Luton station - ~3 miles, train
Luton station to Stevenage - ~15 miles, bus

[edit] Photos