ISLE OF WIGHT

On Friday someone at work asked what I was up to on the weekend and it suddenly dawned on me that I had absolutely no plans. I had wanted to go on a little microadventure for a while and what a perfect opportunity to go on one! My first idea was to run to Paris but as it was already midday and I hadn’t packed any running kit and wasn’t sure that I could get the afternoon off work, run 50 miles to Brighton and make the 11pm ferry…I carried on thinking. I kept looking at my map and was trying to decide what to do when the Isle of Wight jumped out at me. I did a quick search as to the distance around the island, 70 Miles, perfect I could easily do that over a weekend. I booked a ferry went home and packed my bag for the weekends adventure.

Saturday morning arrived and I had an extremely well thought out plan; follow the coastal path, run 35 miles each day, sleep in a filed. Sounds pretty robust to me…what could possibly go wrong?!

Turns out the weather on the first day was going to be against me and I spent most of it in a cloud which was bloody annoying as I head the views on the coastal rather were amazing! The route weaved along country roads, across marshland and through a field with a bull in it…luckily I out smarted him or this story would end here!

I have no idea why but I really wanted to wild camp. I liked the idea of sleeping under the stars but it was a bit scary as this was my first time doing it and I was on my own. My mum thought I was mental and told me to sleep in a hotel and to be fair there was one about 1km away but where is the fun in that!

I woke up at about 6am on Sunday, although I had been waking up every couple of hours because I thought I was going to get attacked by a wolf…I didn’t! Time to get started with day and i needed to wake myself up so I went skinny dipping in the sea! I timed this perfectly and just as I was wrapping my towel around myself a fishing boat rocked up.

I carried on along the path and jumped over another style and to what seemed like just another field until I spied two white horses standing in front of the gate I needed to go through. My immediate thoughts were great I am allergic to horses and how on earth am I going to get past them? As I walked towards the horses one of them started to walk towards me lets call him Jeff. I started to walk backwards Jeff followed me, I went left around the water trough Jeff went right I tried to run up the hill Jeff was quicker, ARGH, how was I going to get around this maniac? Jeff was getting pretty playful and I was hoping I wouldn’t get kicked. I suddenly saw a fence out of the corner of my eye leading to the adjacent field, perfect I will squeeze through that and find another way around! I quickly make a dash for the fence, got halfway through the bloody thing when I get jammed between the two planks of wood because I have forgotten a vital piece of information…I have a backpack on! I am now well and truly stuck between two planks of wood. Jeff takes this as the perfect opportunity to start head-butting and licking me…gross. Finally I wriggle my way to freedom and dart off into the distance. Laters Jeff!

My run ended with a quick stop at the monastery for tea and cake before heading back to ferry. I had 3 miles to get to the ferry port and 40 mins before the last one of the day was heading back to the mainland. I managed to get there with 4 minutes to spare! Perfect timing and an awesome weekend!

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