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Walk to the Centre

WALKING TOUR FROM 20TH DECEMBER TO 29TH DECEMBER 2006

STARTING POINT : NEGOMBO-DANKOTUWA
DESTINATION : KANDALAMA HOTEL, DAMBULLA.
CLIENTS : LUCY & KEITH LANGHAM
INTERPRETER : NAYANA WICKRAMASINGHE

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Conditions that may affect Eco Team grading of trekking trails.

Please remember that it is impossible to be absolutely precise about how hard a walk may be, as there may be many contributory factors. The main benefit of grading is to provide you with an overall indicator to compare one walk against another. We at Eco Team, therefore look at the following 6 factors before deciding the grade:

• Length of trek and length of walking day.
• Average altitude and altitude gain and loss.
• Trail conditions.
• Level of backpacking.
• Temperature range and likely weather conditions.
• Level of humidity can jump from 70% to 90% very easily
• Remoteness to services and general level of comfort.

* Please note the weather condition in Sri Lanka: Lowlands- tropical, average 27C Central Hills- cooler, with temperatures dropping to 14C. the south-east monsoon brings the rain to the western, south western and central regions from May to July, while the north-western monsoon occurs in the north and east in December and January. Sri Lanka boasts a good climate for holiday-makers throughout the year.

A (Easy)
Experience is not necessary at this level: anyone who is in good health and fit enough to enjoy a good weekend hill walk can manage an A-grade. Usually, A-grade treks are short in duration and at lower altitudes; often they are optional, giving a chance of a rest day. However, walking always involves some exertion: trails are seldom flat, and you must still expect to have a reasonable amount of ascent and descent. You would normally walk for 4 to 7 hours during the day.
 
B (Moderate)
Most people who enjoy a weekend in the hills or mountains at home are capable of undertaking a trek at this level: you need to be in good health and reasonably fit, and you will almost certainly be taking regular exercise. A trek could be graded B either as a fairly easy medium-duration walk, or as a harder, shorter walk. Some walking at higher altitude and the occasional longer or more difficult day may be involved, but generally conditions underfoot will be fair. A walking day would normally be between 5 to 8 hours long and no experience is necessary.
 
C (Strenuous)
For any trek at this level, fitness is most important and you may have to improve yours before departure. Most C grade treks are equivalent to extended walking in mountainous terrain at home, but usually at significantly higher altitudes; climate and remoteness can also play a part. Walking days are usually between 6 to 8 hours although there may be some longer days for pass-crossing or similar. Previous trekking experience is desirable but not essential if you are confident of your physical condition.
 
D (Tough)
At this level we recommend previous experience of trekking, preferably at altitude, and you need complete confidence in your physical condition and your ability to trek for many days without a break and be able to cope with difficult underfoot terrain such as difficult paths on steep mountainsides. Extremes of altitude and weather may also be encountered. Stamina is very important, as walking days can be from 6 to 9 hours or even longer on pass-crossing days.
 


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