21. August 2021
Day 78: A Looooong One
Göljan to Södra Holmsjön
A long day, my energy right now subzero. I try to keep it short and sweet.
I got fat since there is a supermarket every few kilometers. Well, maybe fat is a slight exaggeration but I definitely gained some kilos, which I don't feel like carrying around. Hence, I have set an ambitious goal for today: 57 kilometers.
My plan is to average 4 kilometers an hour. Since it's mainly hiking trails today, it depends on them if I can keep the pace. If I am slower, I won't make it as I don't want to walk for more than 14 hours.
I leave my wonderful vindskydd with first light, still using my headlamp for the dark forest parts. The start into my hiking day is surprisingly diverse, passing plenty of little lakes, all of them steaming in the cold morning air.
Going gets a bit more monotonous, the trail meandering through the forest. I'm tempted to shortcut again but decide to stick to the trail, which passes through a national park and several nature reserves. It's not worth the extra kilometers though. No views and not much different from the other parts.
Four and a half hours or 20 kilometers into the hike, which has been going great so far, I take my first break at a vindskydd, where a party of three is just getting ready to start their day. I get a bit jealous. A lazy start into a new day sounds tempting. Especially after getting up at four this morning. But then again, with my restless feet, I'd probably getting... Restless. Without too much talking I continue. Three fast hours to the next vindskydd for my next break. And look who's there: the same party as before! Quite a coincidence. It's not like Sweden is a small country.
They must think 'this lazy guy is always taking breaks'. And I am wondering how they managed to get here before me? Was I really hiking so slowly?! Turns out they took the car. I'm relieved ;)
After a long rest and a lovely chat with this great bunch, I continue. I would have loved to talk a bit longer but I can't get too comfortable.
More road walk ahead so I can make a more accurate prediction of when I will arrive. It's getting tougher by the minute. Nothing is hurting but after 45 kilometers with plenty of up and down my legs are running out of energy.
As I must have lost the O ring of my water filter during the last couple of days, it has become useless. I am a bit pissed off as I knew it eventually had to happen but I never really cared. Luckily there's water in Sixtorp. I empty a 1.5L bottle in one go and fill up another one. 3 additional kilos. My legs are not happy.
Somehow I manage to keep going for another 10 kilometers until, after 13 kilometers, I reach my vindskydd. It's not nearly as scenic as the one last night. At this point, I could not care less. All I need is food and rest. No fire. Too much work.
After removing a tick, which somehow managed to bight me into my hip, right where I have my hip belt pressing on it for 13 hours, I eat my pasta and crawl straight into my sleeping bag.
What should I say: It feels good reaching my ambitious goal. It shows I am reasonably fit. But it all feels a bit rushed. Only push, push, push. I'll probably take it slower the next couple ofdays. I have had my 'fun' today with going fast and far.
By the way: exactly 700 kilometers. That is the distance still ahead of me.
And... I could not keep it short. Oh well, I guess long day, a lot to say.