Replete and bursting with energy, (I think not!), I continued, rising more and more as the topography expanded in all directions. Here is Old Hall Farm, the last vestige of Martinsthorpe, a medieval village. All that remains is this solitary, concreted-over, ruin.

I confess that by now I was very tired. This part of the walk took out of me more than I had anticipated, particularly the climb out of the Leigh Lodge Valley. The ground was becoming increasingly more unforgiving and my pack seemed weightier by each step. I was stopping more frequently and this remote tree appeared to sum up my feelings. Let me know if itís still defying nature!

Up and down, up and down from Lambley Lodge. I had covered 31 miles when I looked back on the approach to Belton-in-Rutland and took this picture. I was knackered, to use the vernacular, and craved a mattress! Itís funny, but the appreciation of beauty gradually diminishes with each tired Ďplodí. I could see Belton ahead of me, yet each footstep felt an eternity. I had seriously begun to question my preparation and wanted more than anything to sink into a warm duvet.

And here it came...

My bed, my apartment and the house that accommodated it, in Belton-in-Rutland. See the accommodation link for details.