Pre-Flight Day3 – Things are happening fast

Things are happening fast now. Our list of to-do’s is getting ticked off quickly and things are falling into place. But I’m eager to start walking. There will be days in the near future that I’ll undoubtedly wish for a down-day, but for now I just want to get moving. Anyone that is already following this blog is probably ready too!

All but the final sets of pre-Flight and Day 2, 5, 8 and pre-France Covid tests are booked and paid for ($660 worth of q-tips so far with two left to purchase). Crazy. But it’s done.

The ferry to France no longer allows foot traffic so we need to secure a bike somewhere in Dover just so we can ride onto the ferry. Facebook marketplace has been a good source of contacts.

I am going to produce and post a final gear review tonight both for my record and so that you will all have something to look at other than just my musings.

Hey check out the Maps Tab. Scroll to the bottom and you’ll find an link to an interactive map of our intended route. It’s google maps so you can zoom right in. If anyone knows how to get it to google earth instead please let me know.

So…in the meantime…what questions do you have?

Published by

Mark Dowty

"An Intentional Life"

5 thoughts on “Pre-Flight Day3 – Things are happening fast”

  1. So … I’m late to the “following” game. I know you’ve been prepping for this trip for a couple of years (at least). How long is this walk (in weeks)? Did you take a leave of absence from work? save vacation or retire? I’m amazed by the dedication by you and Allison and can’t wait to follow the trip. Is anyone else joining you this time?


    1. Kim. You’re not late at all. We haven’t even started yet! :). Good questions.

      Prepping for a couple of years is accurate. It doesn’t take that long; it’s just how long I took. I really needed another adventure on the horizon – something to strive for. I’d heard of the Via when we were preparing for our 2017 Camino. After a few years back from Spain, the bug hit again (these experiences are very addictive).
      The years of planning were a function of work timing, timing required to hit the Alps when they are cross-able (June-early Sept), and some time to train and dream.
      The walk is as long as you want it to be. Our starting point of London is arbitrary. From London it is about a 100day (15w) walk to Rome with about 5 scheduled “rest” days.
      I’d love to take longer, but there is a 90visa limit for US citizens once we hit France. The walk from Calais is about 86 days (depending on your speed of course) so that doesn’t leave a lot of leeway.
      We have a generous PTO policy at Collins, and having 25yrs with the company helps, but even those two things don’t cover this kind of trip. I will be taking some unpaid leave (sabbatical). I thought about retirement when our company had a VSP during Covid but I’m glad I stayed.
      This time it is just Allison and I, but Cindy Wald (Camino 2017) is trying to get to Italy in October and walk the last bit of it. Also a French colleague from work will join us for a day in France and we hope some other European friends will find a way to meet us somewhere.
      How about you? Come walk a week through the Champagne region, around lake Geneva, or Tuscany with us. It’s definitely not too late!


      1. Mark

        Wow!! I’m so excited to hear about each day! If we were going to be in Europe, I would find you! Next trip not until February next year. If anything changes … I will message you. Walking through Champagne or Tuscany would be a dream!

        Safe travels and God speed to you both!


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