There has been some movement at the station…
1. Trailstar has turned up and has been seam sealed. Still waiting for the Oookstar, that should arrive around March.
2. I’m rethinking footwear. The Salomon Synapse WP have failed a couple of points: Laces are not repairable in the field, or replaceable with normal laces; and the ventilation is quite poor resulting in stinky feet after only a few days to a level that I have never suffered before. I’ll be wearing gaiters for part of the trip, and I cannot discount the possibility of lace failure around the front attachment hook (it hooks onto the laces) My Fastpackers are too worn to complete the trip, so I need some new shoes. I’m waiting on a pair of Salomon Comet 3D GTX which I think fit the bill. Will update in due course.
3. Route has been vetted and fine-tuned to vetter’s excellent suggestions. I have to send in the final updated route sheet, but otherwise it’s all done.
Edit Feb 7th: Updated Route sheet submitted.
4. Europe airfares are booked. Still working on the post-challenge arrangements, hire cars and intra-Europe flights.
5. Still mulling over camera gear for the Challenge. Plenty of time yet.
6. Preliminary arrangements for food is done. I will have 3 pickup points: Drumnadrotchit, Aviemore, and Ballater.
7. January was a wipe-out for walking training with just 70km completed. February has been cooler and 40km completed so far.