Day 73 - Meeting a road block
Sudbrook - Clevedon 50.6 km (2409 km done)
Start Time - 8.23 am
Finish Time - 5.01 pm
Moving time - 6 hours 16 mins
Vertical Gain - 319 m
Average - 22 C
Min - 19 C
Max - 26 C
So funny story, way back in Mwnt Bex met and spoke to a person who said they had walked the coast path. They explained that along the Severn Estuary there had been a lot of erosion and following the trail was not possible due to the erosion. When Bex told me that I assumed, as did she, that they were talking about the Wales Coast Path past Cardiff. I took this seriously and searched the internet to see if I could find any information out. There was nothing that suggested any changes to the coast path in Wales and so I assumed that everything was fine. Well after today, I think they were talking about the Severn Path between the M48 and M4 bridges, since today I came upon a large amount of flood defence work being done here, which meant the Severn Way was closed. By chance the start of the closure is where I had put my first Checkpoint, well actually it was in the middle of a closed road. I set off following what I thought was the footpath diversion around the outside of field, the diversion signs then ended on a footpath through another field so I followed it, using the OS map on my phone, assuming that I would pick up signs again. This footpath deposited me onto the verge of a dual carriageway with no safe way to progress, and not only that I had done a big circle. I found a notice that suggested an alternative route. This is an excerpt from the notice:
"OAU/31/10, OAU/31/20 and marked route through ASEA Area 5, ORN/18A/20, OOL/7/20"
And so it continues for five lines. I am not exactly sure that is an easily described alternative route.
I set off again in search of the diversion, but again came up against footpath closed signs, which often I'd chance that I could get through the closure, but the works being done are pretty huge with no way through. I had to make my own diversion. This meant adding 2.5 km to the route for today and spending a lot of time checking that I was going the right way. By the time I reach the second checkpoint in Avonmouth I was less than happy. I eat quite a lot of food since I was fed up. This seemed to help and by the time I set off I was in a better place mentally ready for the rest of the day, which went very smoothly and with no further dramas.
Today my resolve was challenged and there were a few times when I would have quite liked to sit down and sulk, but this does not change the situation or move me closer to the end. The goal is always relentless forward progress. Today I had to make a decision about the way I was going and get on with moving. However annoyed I was at the situation and at the poster that advised an alternative route, I could not change the situation or the ridiculous alternative route description and by the end of the day the frustration had been forgotten and I had mostly enjoyed another day.