This was the second of our three day-trips by coach. There were 55 on it. Seventeen were dropped off near Dorchester for a five mile walk to the town. Two were dropped off in Dorchester to spend the day there, and the remaining 36 were dropped off in the car park near Maiden Castle (SW Dorchester) for an eight mile walk.
There was sunshine most of the day so the views on the walks were superb. Those on the longer walk headed south on a bridleway, walked briefly by the B3159 and then turned right on a bridleway that took them across fields to the South Dorset Ridgeway. They turned west and followed this to the Hardy Monument where they stopped for lunch. The views along the SDR and from the HM were impressive.
After lunch they set off downhill to rejoin the SDR and branch off on the Jubilee Trail. A headcount revealed that one person was missing. One of the walkers had stopped before the HM to eat her lunch and was to be collected by the rest when they returned to take the Jubilee Trail. What had happened to the other? The attendance list was consulted and a roll call taken. The missing person was identified. Where was he? Two hurried on to the lone luncher to see if he was with her. Some checked to see if they had his mobile phone number. A few minutes later the absentee appeared, seemingly unconcerned, walking down the hill. It turned out that he had been left behind earlier, unknowingly, and had joined the lone person for lunch instead of climbing to the HM with the others. Later he went in search of the group as they took longer to reappear than the two expected. He went up one side of the hill as the group came down another.
Normal walking resumed after this; the group joined the Jubilee Trail and continued on this to Upwey. Here they stopped for a cream tea in the local tearoom. The coach arrived 40 minutes later with the rest of those on the outing and soon after set off on the return journey.
Map: OS OL 15