I was going quite well - the only person to attempt the Moray Way 5 day challenge on the backpacking/wild camping option.
Admittedly the 95 miles in 5 days with a heavy rucksack meant 20 mile days and fairly slow progress.
Day 1 was Cromdale to Dunphail. It was warm and periodically sunny. My modest 2.5 mph could not keep pace with others on the park & ride option. So I passed the day in the company of the two backmarkers. We enjoyed a cup of coffee in Grantown on Spey courtesy of some sponsorship from Mcleans Highland Bakery.
Overnight I camped just behind the Dunphail Breathing Space. It was hard to find a pitch without waist high plants or stony ground. Eventually I decided on a spot and had a good night albeit with a crowd of midges attracted to my tent by the bright yellow colour. None got through inner mesh though.
Day 2 - Dunphail to Burghead. Even though I started at 7.30 am the rest of the walkers beat me to the end point. Most of the day I walked on my own. It was warm but there was no sunshine and quite windy on the coastal section.
It was a walk of three distinct parts.
The Dava Way to its end point at Forres, the road/cycle path to Findhorn and then the Moray Coastal Trail on to Burghead. I find sand a difficult walking surface so even though I didn't go on the beach the Coastal Trail is largely sand and stones.
Just before the end in the Roseisle forest my right knee began to be painful. I stopped and took some Ibuprofen and Paracetamol - without much success.
Camping at the now 'exclusively caravans' campsite was not possible. A lift back to base the only option.
This morning the painful knee was still er - painful - so I had to withdraw.
I had deliberately packed less stuff - particularly warm clothes and food. Plenty of buying opportunities meant no need for those extra emergency measures. Even so I might have to reconsider some of the rest of my kit.....