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Shropshire, 5 March 2017

Despite, with all the optimism of a new committee, deciding to run three trips within a fortnight, we managed to get a full complement of 24 people off on our day trip to the Stiperstones, in the Shropshire Hills. Those of us who made it were rewarded with gorgeous moorland, dramatic tors, and the full gamut of Spring weather. After torrential rain and a little hydroplaning on the drive, we were welcomed by snow-dusted hills and only mild drizzle, which cleared for most of the day and was even replaced at intervals by sunshine. Only the March mud was a constant.

All walks headed along the main ridge, mostly Northwards (where the various routes encountered clear quartzite outcrops, less clear hill forts, and abandoned mine shafts that extensive scientific experimentation demonstrated to be 'quite deep'), but in one case Southwards (where instead there were good sheep, a haphazard off-path descent through woodland, and Wales). Most then reunited at a 16th century pub that proved to be hard to leave, not least because the 'quick 2km back to the cars' involved as much uphill as the rest of the day. After a 'run' by the trip leader and a quick shuttle service, all cars and people were once more reunited, and only great conversation and the journey back remained. It's not often you start from Cambridge, walk into Wales, and are back within a day.

Matt Arran