Ray Chaplin solo walk from Cape Town to Beit Bridge – day 16

Posted on 24 November 2009

Monday was spent relaxing, packing & re-packing to get the load right in the new pack I’ll be taking out with me and doing some more research for the route ahead.

Train news is that while there is a train on Tuesday, I have been advised not to take it by the people at the booking office… so I will be heading back to Matjiesfontein on Wednesday and heading straight out of town in the evening when I arrive. Thursday I will then push through to Laingsburg, and Friday depart Laingsburg in the direction of Karoo National Park which is just outside Beaufort West.

The time spent packing is very important for my enjoyment and comfort. Getting the load right in the pack is essential and while the basic concept of where to load weight etc remains roughly the same, one has to adjust exact locations depending on the pack itself. I eventually found what I believe was the best weight distribution for my load in the Mountain Hardwear South Col pack, but for the next phase I am taking the Vaude Accept… it’s a bigger, more trekking specific pack and things change quite drastically now.

To add to the complication of how to load the bag, there are days when I am going to have to carry in excess of 15L of water! That’s a whopping 15kg of water to add to the already heavy pack… so weight distribution becomes a big issue as one doesn’t want to put the weight too high or too far out, but it’s only a temporary load so I also don’t want to go upset everything that’s loaded inside.

I swung past Epic Bike Shop with Mark to drop off my old bicycle frame (Buttercup) as she may be recalled into service in light of Betty being stolen just before my departure. Poor gal has been through hell with me, and now she may be resurrected. Aylex & Lance at Epic have been absolutely awesome in support of my ventures and are working hard to help get a replacement for Betty so that I can complete the walk with a cycle home, as well as launch my campaign for Africa next year.

Tatum told me the news that McCains Adventure Addicts are off to Malaysia this weekend for a stage AR event – good luck team! Give it stick & enjoy it! I’ve heard amazing things and seen some incredible visuals… it’s gonna be awesome I am sure.

My dad returned from his trip yesterday, so we went out for dinner last night. Sadly it would appear my system still can’t handle anything too rich and creamy… so I didn’t enjoy the great meal, and ended up taking meds when I got home just to help me get through it and sleep.

That’s me for now, but I’ll update in the evenings again from tonight – now that the madness has subsided.

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