Slogging through the bog of the watershed on Kinder Scout, is at this time, very
like Russian roulette. There are tussocks of grass. Some are afloat and some
are solid. If you get a 'floater' then you are, quite literally, sunk. You have to
concentrate on the map and the ground at your feet at the same time and not get
distracted. Navigation is, unsurprisingly a nightmare.
By rights really today it should have been a stroll - the water should all have
evaporated leaving a firm but springy light brown surface, perfect for walking. But
it is, for some reason, worse than any of the 'practice' traverses of this section. I
suspect that some fiend has taken a stick and stirred the bog into a sort of
Brown-Windsor soup ("Oh eye saaay, brahwn whinshor souhp").
"Can you see anything?", "Yes, Wonderful things!"
I scan the black wasteland around me and start to sink gently. The peat makes
friendly gloop gloop noises around my boots.
"we need to go further south" I say encouragingly trying to sound as if I know
where we are "we should start picking up Kinder River anytime now" I look again
at my compass. And then, very gently, right in front of my disbelieving eyes the
needle jerks and flips right round. I stare at it dumbfounded.
"Oi" Shouts J to my right "this one looks likely" He has found a grough with sand
at its base. Its how you tell if you're approaching Kinder River. "Oh Good" I reply
I don't finish I just rush to catch up.
Sure enough J has covered enough ground in the grough to establish that he's
following the right direction and he's waving at me cheerfully. I return the wave
and look back at the horrible watershed one final time. But it seems that mother
nature isn't going to let us off that easily. I stare in mute disbelief at the
explanation to my compass blues and the increasingly 'stuffed' feeling in my head.
There is a thunderstorm. Not close yet but huge. Really really huge. And moving
like the wolf of Fenris right at us. Its jaws sweeping from moor to stratosphere, its
teeth are lightning bolts. Torrential rain cascades, well at least I hope its rain. Oh
Boy. JUST what we need right now.............