The first sunny day for ages and I am standing in the middle of the heather wasteland that makes up large chunks of the Berwyn hills, searching for a faint track that I was fairly sure existed but simply could not see.
The trouble is that on the ground things ain’t that simple! I could see no track. Though it was dry, recent rains meant the bogs were squidgy enough to go over the top of your boots if you were careless; between the mounds of deep heather and moor grass stretching as far as the eye could see, it was going to be painfully slow progress. Luckily the mobile signal up here was strong and I opened up the satellite view, zoomed in and there was the track right by my little blue dot. I looked down at my feet and there indeed was the track hidden until I knew exactly were to look. I was saved. A few hundred yards further and yet again the satellite maps rescued the day and made the unseen visible.
Now lest anyone thinks I am advocating navigating across wild and untracked hills by mobile maps and satellite imagery alone, don’t get me wrong. The Ordnance Survey maps show the lay of the land, the slopes, summits and valleys no matter whether there is a mobile signal or not, always providing the bigger picture and in most cases the smaller one too.
Two fine days a month apart, two types of maps and two successful walks. Now about that hubris……