Perhaps this was you first walk with a heavy pack, you've had a late night, have sore feet, new boots, pack not adjusted correctly or that old knee problem has come back to haunt you.
Have you ever struggled unnoticed at the back of a walking group? Did you ever wish the leader would stop for a break?
Did anyone ask you how you were going or offer to help? Did anyone walk with you so you weren't on your own? Did anyone offer to lighten your load? Did the leader ask you to move to the front of the group where your progress could be watched?Well if they did, you had a good leader and /or a compassionate " tail-end-charlie" or "whip". In my opinion, one of the roles of the leader is to ensure that everyone enjoys themselves and finishes the walk having achieved some of their goals.This may require that the leader, or someone who has been delegated, takes an interest in your welfare.
Most walking clubs want to increase membership, yet some leaders treat their new members with a complete lack of interest. You are old enough to look after yourself they say.
But are you really able to look after yourself? Do they really care that you are enjoying your walk or are they really there only for themselves?Sometimes I think it's the latter and this is reinforced when they surge to the front, leaving the rest of the group spread out over hundreds of metres. If they do stop for the group to catch up, do they move off again as soon as you arrive, leaving you no opportunity to rest? Sometimes they even forget to reestablish the group at each intersection, before moving on; quite an dangerous mistake.
How do they know that everyone is with the group? Can they see or hear those at the back of the group? Do they really care?
This article by Bush Walker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.