Conditions on this morning’s 5½ mile walk were different from yesterday. It was colder, paths were frozen and mud was solid. There was a flurry of snow as we left the church at Abinger Common where we’d stopped for coffee.
Our leader took us (23) on walk 7 from the group’s book Twenty-Five Favourite Walks in West Surrey and Sussex. After the walk six of us stopped for lunch at The Dabbling Duck in Shere. We ate outside in their yurt. This, to our surprise, was warm and comfortable.
On our walks the leaders ask participants to write their names in a small notebook when they arrive at the start. Most leaders number the lines to make it easy to see at a glance how many are on the walk. It is prudent for the backmarker or someone else good at counting ramblers (which can be surprisingly difficult) to do a head count as the group sets off.
On quick inspection of the list today there were 22 on the walk. However, this was one short; there were 23. One half of a couple (new to the group and who probably didn’t realise the significance of the numbers) had written both names on one line. If someone had been left behind we might not have noticed because the number present would have tallied with the last number on the list.
Footnote: It seems there were 22 after all. The leader’s name appeared twice on the list.
Map: OS X 146