Daughter Karen, looking for a woodland excursion without having to think about anything, followed me around the Brown course at Wachusett Mt. A cold, windy day with clear blue sky. Shivering until climbed the first 100m from the start, then didn't think about temperature again. I found it difficult to move through the woods - dense with small deciduous trees with low branches. Spent a lot of time stooped to duck under branches.
For no good reason I still find it difficult to gauge distance using a 1:7,500 map.
I tried concentrating on aiming for interim features, i.e. staying in contact with the map. When leaving #2 for #3 I knew I'd have trouble on compass since there were not helpful features along the way to confirm azimuth. So when I spotted a flag off to the left when distance seemed correct, I figured I again botched holding course and moved left. Wrong flag. Turns out I was on course and would have found #3 up the next contour. By now I was confused whether I was north or south of the correct line and wandered a lot before I could match terrain to the map. On #5 I again lost confidence of distance and course and started the left-or-right search too early. I relocated to the westward bump of the creek, a feature I should have sought in the first place.
The other legs went OK. Between heavy bush whacking and a tender hip, I went pretty slowly. My route
Really nice to have Karen along. We followed up with lunch in Leominster and then on to her house in Acton for a visit with Peter and the kids before heading home, driving into the glare of the setting sun. A good day.