Like this page?
Send it to a friend!
Keeping him in the van could be tough
Supporting the Severn in Seven
By Adrian Green
Behind every big adventure is a team of highly skilled experts, offering both practical and motivational support. The Severn in Seven challenge is no different... step forward Adam's dad.
"Dad we're looking for someone to ride shotgun when I and a colleague (Helen) run the Severn Way in October are you up ferrett?" [words of Adam Green esq]
Well how could I refuse, it's outdoors and it's an adventure, so count me in Adam.
Although, as someone who walks long-distance paths (LDPs) and hasn't done the Severn Way, the thought of driving along it as support team is not quite as appealing as actually doing it.
However, I should get to walk some of the Severn Way whilst waiting at the check points, or even cycle part of it. Some sections of the route will be inaccessible by van and my services might well be required for sustenance or first aid - I am taking a mountain bike just in case.
Also part of the Severn Way doubles up with Offa's Dyke, which I walked in 2005 with my wife, five Canadians and three Americans on our two-yearly get together. We always try to tackle a long distance route somewhere in the world - last year it was Ireland on the Kerry Way and next year it's Slovenia.
On our trip along Offa's Dyke we were interviewed by BBC Radio Shropshire, which our American friends thought was "really neat".
Although it never gets the high rating against other British LDPs that it surely deserves, Offa's Dyke is a fantastic walk in beautiful surroundings. The Severn Way should be just the same, as it follows in roughly the same direction (albeit for the most part on the opposite side of the river).
Adam and Helen at the Severn's source
Over the past couple of weeks I have been planning what we need to take in the van. Last weekend Adam came over for a meeting and we went through the 12 Ordnance Survey maps the route covers. These have all been marked in pink along the trail, while the individual legs and change-over points have been marked in blue (along with the overnight stops).
Now I know exactly what Adam and Helen are doing and where all the places I need to be are. The only problem I have is can I get the van there... and also how long will it take me, as lots of the roads take me away from the trail. I feel another coloured felt tip pen is in order to mark the driver's route - perhaps in Green? So that at the start we all know what we're doing.
The kit list for the van (which has over 70 items on it) includes everything from first aid kit to fluorescent tabards. It has been typed out and steadily marked off as more and more items are placed on the spare room bed and floor.
It is quite amazing what is (or could be) needed during the trip, depending on weather conditions and also how Helen and Adam stand up to the seven days of running. Do we need a defibrillator? Or will smelling salts do?
Will they be able to keep going day after day on some very varied terrain?
This was one area of concern I raised with Adam at our meeting: what happens if one of you gets injured?
"That's easy Dad, you take over and the injured one drives the van."
Well I don't mind walking it, but the last time I ran was 1968 in the Lincolnshire Grammar Schools Cross Country Championship... and that's 40 years ago so you better not get injured!
last updated: 18/09/2008 at 17:14