Report from November 21st

Having successfully left my Hotel on Portland Bill I had to descend the muddy track I had ascended the day before. A nights torrential rain had left it waterlogged and very slippery. I managed to get down in one piece but a slip and fall half way down caused a nasty bend in one of my walking poles, could have been worse could have been me!
Breakfast at Greggs and a bit of pole straightening and I was good as new.
The rain was now coming down again. I plodded along the spit towards Weymouth when a car pulled in and the driver said his partner had be following me since Byrness in Northumberland and she’d told him to say hello! This was a nice gesture and raised my spirits. I left the spot and headed past Wyke Regis towards Abbotsbury. The path was now a stream in places, a river in others. I took shelter in a sentry box on Wyke Regis Army firing range and the rain actually stopped.
This made things easier as now at least I wasn’t getting water coming from above. However there was plenty of water coming from below to keep me occupied.
I also had a bit of an equipment fail. I had a pair of cold weather trousers which I was wearing unfortunately the heavy rain had overcome their waterproof ability and they were actually transferring water down into my boots. Even the sealskin socks were struggling with this so I was getting wet, but mercifully not cold feet.
The path continued towards Abbotsbury where I encountered a new problem. A small local brook had become a large flooded river blocking the path with about two feet of fast flowing flood water.
I set off to try and find a way round it.
As I walked through a gateway as I was confronted by the sight of a large buck red deer with a nice set of antlers making his way across the field. What made this more impressive was that rather than walking or running he was pronking. This is bouncing along as if all four of his legs were pogo sticks, considering he weighed about 300lbs this was quite remarkable.
Just as I’d finished admiring him vanish into the woods . I discovered I’d inadvertently blundered into a pheasant shoot as a couple of guns walked towards me with a concerned expression on their faces. After a bit of discussion I discovered that I would need to divert about two miles around the roads to get back on the path avoiding the flooded river.
I made my way to a wild campsite accompanied by the sounds of gunfire from nearby woods, and the return of the rain.

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