Day 13 Glaisdale to Robin Hood’s Bay (19 miles)

The day started slightly overcast which wasn’t as per prediction but it did mean that it would be more comfortable for walking. This was it, the final push for Robin Hood’s Bay (RHB). We were started by 9 and after viewing the Beggar’s Bridge in Glaisdale (built by a local labourer made good so that future suitors wouldn’t have a 10 mile walk to visit their sweethearts in Glaisdale like he had) we walked above Glaisdale Beck in wooded hills.

Beggars Bridge

After some pleasant walking for an hour we ended up at Grosmont through which the North York Moors railway runs. We had just missed the train and to Mike’s disgust we stopped for a coffee in the sunshine whilst awaiting the next train.

Train at Grosmont

Life is all about balance, after our rest in the sun at the coffee shop after only an hour’s walk we had to pay back for this indulgence. The road out of Grosmont which we had to climb had a 1:3 gradient and twice at bends we thought we had come to the top of the climb only for it to shortly resume. Eventually we reached the top, passed the 3 Brummies and were on the moors for a stretch. I took a diversion to look at an ancient stone circle (waste of time) but there were plently of grouse in the heather including one plucky individual who whilst only  a metre away from me refused to fly when I lunged at him, he should survive the 12th!

We crossed the busy Whitby road and got a distant view of the town with its abbey on the cliffs where Dracula stayed whilst in Whitby.

Whitby from Sleights Moor

We then dropped down to Littlebeck and started walking with the Brummies. We followed a muddy riverside path towards Falling Foss and passed a hermit’s shelter.

Hermitage near Falling Foss

Shortlya fter we reached Falling Foss which is quite a tourist trap with a tea room, after having lunch here along with quite a few other C2Cers we carried on (today was definitely a day to treat ourselves).

Falling Foss Waterfall

Suitably refreshed we continued and were soon at Graystone Hills, a large moor with some rather boggy bits, the way had been well trampled and whilst we could feel waves underneath the reeds we were walking on we did not get too muddy. Our paths crossed with 3 teenagers just starting the C2C east to west & carrying tents etc – rather them than me & I bet Mark was glad that Di had put her foot down about them camping!

After the moor we came to our first road sign for RHB, only 3.5 miles by road but 5 by the path that we were to take, Wainwright you see was a sadist.

Sheila was coming to meet us at the end and had been delayed with traffic so we bid the Brummies a temporary goodbye and went and had a pint in Hawkser, just off the path (3rd refreshment stop of the day – I told you it was a day to enjoy). In the pub we got talking to a local whose accent was so thick we understood about one word in 3. Having just left the pub we heard from Sheila that she was in RHB & we were still an hour away. Knowing the end was nigh our steps accelerated & we passed through a caravan park where the residents wondered what we were up to.

Almost there!

We dropped down through the caravan park and were finally at the North Sea and just had a cliff walk to the end.

 

Arrival at the North Sea

Mike was now desperate to get to RHB & was most upset that I took time off to re-vaseline my feet ( I had been taking pain-killers every 2 hours to make the walk bearable), upon re-starting he was off like a shot & I had to slow him down on several occasions, hence the walk along the cliffs wasn’t as pleasurable as it could have been, the views were great even if they were seen at speed.

Yorkshire Cliff top

Just near the end we finally got a view of RHB, which we had been striving for through torrential rain, lightning storms, bogs, high winds, floods, dodgy hostels, lots of beer and good company for 13 days.

View of Robin Hood’s Bay from cliff walk

Sheila was sitting in the sun at our guest house with a drink as we entered RHB, there was to be no stopping to get rid of rucksacks the sea was calling. We dropped down the steep hill in the sunshine past all the tourists in their flip flops and now were just metres behind the Brummies even though we’d diverted off the path for a pint just 5 miles before.

At the Bay Hotel, Mark, Di, Stuart, Ann & Anna (2 Norwegians) were already there, looking clean & showered (b****ds) and having a drink in the sun & gave all 5 of us a cheer. It was then a case of making sure we dipped our feet in the North Sea & throwing our pebbles carried from St Bees in to the sea so that future generations of geologists will be awfully confused.

Preparing to liberate our Irish Sea pebbles

We then simply chilled out in the sun with a beer with those we had walked with & Sheila who had supported us both from afar & near (including the offer to undertake a 3 hour drive to bring us fresh clothes to Osmotherly). The time at the Bay Hotel went too quick after all the experiences we had shared, but this must count as the most unforgettable fortnight of our lives.

The absolute end!

Wee count 5

Total wee count over 13 days ONLY 55!

 

 

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Day 12 Clay Bank Top to Glaisdale (19 miles)

The day was bright and sunny when we were dropped off at Clay Bank Top at 8.30, as we planned to lunch at the Lion Inn 9 miles away there was no rush. We ascended to Urra Moor on a paved path typical of the Cleveland Way which we had been following since yesterday morning. We were the first on the path and so we saw several families of grouse on the path and in the surrounding heather, in only 3 days there would be a lot less grouse as it would be “the glorious 12th”. We also saw several of the stone pillars which the mores is famous for including 1 with a face.

Face Stone

Urra Moor

After slow progress (I had blisters on both heels and Mike was feeling under the weather) we reached an old mineral railway line and followed that for several miles, at first it was a pleasant change but as the black scar of a path wound around the valleys we tired of it and wished for sight of the Lion pub. Eventually we arrived and had lunch and a medicinal beer. After leaving we had a stretch of road walking before we reached Fat Betty a prehistoric menhir where C2Cers leave offerings of food.

Fat Betty

After that we had a pleasant walk around Great Fryup Dale where we disturbed more grouse in the heather. The 3 brummies then caught us up and we walked together which helped us to forget our aches and pains.

 

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The walk to Glaisdale seemed to take an age but we eventally reached the pub we were staying in and a shower plus bursting blisters made a big difference to our view of tomorrows walk the final day!

Wee count 3 total 50

 

 

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Day 11 Osmotherly to Clay Bank Top (10 miles)

We were up bright & early to get to the Youth Hostel to get a change of clothes, however we had arrived just 5 mins after our bags had been picked up, so we had another day’s walking in our stinking clothes, but it did keep the flies away! Today’s walk was much better with the sun shining all day, which meant we finally managed to dry out. We spotted our first grouse of the walk, foraging in a nearby field, this was to be the first of many encounters over the next few days.

We walked through the Cleveland Hills with the heather flowering & pleasant walks through woodland and undulating hills a big change from yesterday! The hills run north to south whilst we were walking west to east so that ended up climbing and descending some 5 hills today. We crossed several streams & fords still showing the signs of  yesterday’s torrential rain.

View along Cleveland escarpment

Stream in flood

The only problems were my feet which had blistered due to walking in damp socks and footwear and Mikes thighs which had rubbed raw.  We persevered with the help of vaseline & Nurofen. We got our first view of the north sea over industrial Teeside, the end is in sight!

First view of the sea

On one of the hills there was a gliding club thought he gliders were not out today thought there were some half a dozen para-gliders waiting for the thermals to build, after we had climbed the following hill they all started to take to the air.

Paraglider on Cleveland escarpment

The penultimate target for the day was the Wainstones a popular rock climbing venue & there were large numbers of climbers taking advantage of the dry weather.

Wainstones

Today was the best day’s walking since the lakes bar the pains and we finished by 4pm.

Wee count 3 total 47

 

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Day 10 Richmond to Osmotherley (24 miles)

After a good chinese in Richmond & a different breakfast (US breakfast for Mike and smoked haddock plus poached eggs for me) we set off in the sunshine by 8.30am. We initially walked by the Swale with good views of Swale falls & the castle.

View of Richmond castle from over the Swale

 

We then passed into farmland and set a fast pace as the forecast was for rain later.We caught up with Jo,Sarah and Louise plus Mark, Stuart  and Di. We paused  at Bolton on Swale to view Henry Jenkins grave who lived to 170.

Henry Jenkins Grave

We then carried on and  bid a temporary goodbye to Di plus others  as we took a field route to Danby Wiske & they took the road. We passed through wheat, barley, maize, stubble and grass fields in multitudes before reaching Danby Wiske 20 mins after Di et al.

One of the many fields we passed through

We stopped at a pub, this is the only one I have seen where they sold Compeed plasters!  After a pleasant drink sitting outside on the village green in the sun we carried on with the 3 Brummies, thunder rumbled in the distance, eventually the heavens opened for a prolonged period making the walking a challenge. Several times we saw “twisters” forming in the clouds though none touched down. We were walking towards the rain, it was balck in front of us with chain (horizontal) lightning arcing across the top of the hill we had to climb whilst westwards (were we had come from it was bright and clear).

The view forwards

The view backwards

Eventally we reached the A19 dual carriageway & took  our lives in our  hands & crossed to the promised land of a pub and dryness. We arrived at the Blue Bell at Ingleby Cross to find it in darkness & the door shut with a notice saying shut to 5 pm, being thoroughly wet & it being 5.01pm we pushed in & shouted until we found a barman. Having had a drink with Di et al (they were staying here) we re donned our waterproofs & carried on for the last two miles up Arncliffe hill, the forest road had became a yellow river in the torrential rain.

Upon reaching Osmotherley we found the Youth Hostel surrounded by water as the river has burst it’s banks & the YH cut off from the village, of course our bags were also left at the Youth Hostel by the Sherpa Van company earlier in the day!!

 

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So we  were left in the damp clothes we were in, trying to find alternative accommodation & attempt to get dry.  We eventally ended up with the only room in the village in the Queen Catherine pub (only pub in England named after Catherine of Aragon though Elephhant and Castle is an anglicisation of enfante de castille her title) Whilst looking for a room we bumped into the 2 norwegians who had commented that the food they were eating was nice, whilst we would of just been happy with findig a bed, they had also skipped this stage by taking a bus so we hated them for two reasons, anyway relations were restored when I bought them a glass of arsenic each and hoped that there next nights accom (10. Miles from anywhere else is struck by lightning and burnt down)!!!.

 

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Wee count 8 total 44

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Day 9 Grinton to Richmond (10 miles)

Today we knew was going to be an easy day before the longest most boring day tomorrow. We set off before 9 with a weather forecast predicting rain by lunch time. After yesterday we were keen to finish before the rain commenced.

Another walker caught up with us & we got talking, his name was Ian from Manchester & he was 68 years & 51 weeks old, but looked at least 18 years younger. He explained how he came here several times a year to walk & generally didn’t go elsewhere as he wasn’t a confident map reader. We then caught up with the two norwegians that we had seen on & off & all five of us walked & chatted.

We reached the Nun’s Steps (all 375 of them) & Ian demonstrated that he might be 68y & 51 weeks but boy was he fit, he left us all behind! Ian then went off to carry on his walk but said that we might meet him again at Maersk. The walk was largely through farmland with rolling hills, we dropped down to a farm advertising teas but a herd of very frisky cows persuaded us not to go (we’d only been walking an hour anyway).

At Maersk, a pretty estate village, we met up with Ian again & carried on with the rest of the walk, we ascended to Applegarth Scar & it started to rain, once we had donned our waterproofs it stopped. Those Yorkshire raingods are a devious bunch!

Applegarth scar

We then had a short walk through a woods before we started to descend to Richmond, time taken a mere 4 hours. Mind you tomorrow could well be 9 hours!

Richmond market square

We had lunch in a tea room in Richmond square (hard life this C2C) & then went to our accomodation & thankfully they were able to do our laundry before our bag disintegrated from the toxic effects of the dirty clothes.

Wee count 2 To date 36

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Day 8 Keld to Grinton (11 miles)

After probably one of the worst accommodations of the trip in Kirkby Steven, we had one of the best night’s accommodations at the Little Birkdale in Keld, we stayed in a self contained flat overlooking the Moors, with delicious food & excellent hosts. I lay soaking in the bath after a days walking admiring the brilliant view of the surrounding moors of Yorkshire. As we had separate bedrooms Mike could sleep as I had a beer & watched a film.

From Keld we had two options a high & low level walk, due to the weather forecast predicting heavy showers & thunder storms we took the low level route along the river. Due to the rain on the peat Moors the water was running black & foamy &  looked just like Guinness.

Keld river water

We passed some falls & carried on down the valley, unlike previous days we were now walking down river towards sea rather than up river away from the sea. We passed a large group of americans who were doing the C2C as part of an organised group, they were walking from Keld to Gunnerside (1.5 or 2 hours max) on the flat with two guides, were then having lunch at the cafe before being taken to another easy part of the C2C. Perhaps there is hope for Uncle Geoff yet!

A large group of farmers with, land-rovers, trailers and quad bikes were moving a flock of sheep down the hillside. It made for fascinating if noisy viewing as the sheep were all complaining loudly about being disturbed.

We stopped off for a hot drink at Gunnerside along with the 3 ladies who we had been meeting on and off since day 1. One of them asked the cafe owner whether you were meant to eat the Wensleydale with the fruit cake or separately, you would have thought she had asked “due I need to breath to stay alive” the owner gave her a look half pity & half scorn & explained of couse you had to. As we were leaving the cafe the heavy rain commenced!!! We started to walk through fields when lightning struck directly above us & it started to rain even heavier, we decided to walk along the road to make faster progress, but after a mile we decided to go back to the river.

wet weather

 

 

We arrived in Grinton at 3pm & Michael forced Dad to drink a couple of pints of Old Peculiar & watch the Olympic tennis final, once the bad weather passed & the tennis had finished we moved on to the YHA.

Wee count 5 Total so far 34

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Day 7 Kirkby Stephen to Keld (11 miles)

Today’s word is “squelch” sponsored by Yorkshire, mike fell asleep as soon a lights were out, but it was after 1:30am before I got to sleep, as Friday night in K.S seems to consist of accelerating up and down the high street. I was then woken before 5, by the cheering of lots of birds on the roof. The sound they made was unusual and I started to wonder if these were the flock of parrots mentioned in the guide book! After a while I started to fantasise about having a Flamethrower and roasting those avian pests. I then realised I had ear plugs and after fitting those I got an hours sleep.

Breakfast was horrible so mike ended up with a sausage roll from the local store, and we were glad to leave the damp hostel. We climbed past a large quarry,

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We Carried on past a farm that had lama (that reminds me on day 1 we also saw a farm near t bees with emu) you see diversification is the way to make profits in farming.

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We passed a sign that told us we were at the half way point of c2c and we then rested at a unique chair, as there was no charge for this we deduced that we were still in Cumbria!

We then climbed up to standards rig which is quite spectacular

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We then dropped down to the Yorkshire boarder an having bought the obligatory flat cap and ferret, we proceeded into Yorkshire, as a welcome the heavens opened and the mud was up to our shins, thankfully mikes new gators were in north Wales, so came in very usefu!! We proceeded down the hill through more bog an had lunch in a sheep fold, at home for a welsh mike! The farmer had welcoming put a fence around it but that didn’t stop us and to make it more pleasant it started to rain. We squelched down the rest of the valley to raven seat farm for a hot drink and a home made scone.

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We then squelched down whitsundale and saw abounded buildings every hundred meters.
The rain kept teasing us by commencing and then stopping once we had donned our water proofs. We arrived at the road and visited Wain Wath Force

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We then arrived at Kelso lodge for a recuperative drink before we are picked up.
Wee Count;3 Total 29

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Day 6 Shap to Kirkby Stephen (20 miles)

The day started sunny we even put on sun cream, this was of course a waste of time, but we didn’t know this then! We set off before 9am on what was to be our longest day so far, having crossed the m6 we walked along side it for a short while by the cement works. The difference verse yesterday when we had a long Moore land tramp along the hills could not be more pronounced. We had distant views of the lakes, and as the cloud lifted we could see Kidsty Pike where we were yesterday, which seemed a long way away, we left the motorway and soon saw the change in geology with the limestone pavement. This area is limestone country unlike the lakes and we saw numerous line kilns throughout the day.

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We carried on walking along undulating Moore land and saw a granite glacial erratic lft by a retreating glacier!

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The scenery could not be more different than yesterday and a long long trudge through Moore land continued all day.

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Eventually as we approached kirkby Steven the land became less rough, the highlight of a pretty dull day was scandals viaduct,

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As we approached we could see 9 standards rig on the horizon which is one of tomorrow’s destinations, to relieve the boredom we counted the wagons on a freight train. We arrived in KS after 8 hours of walking and other than a few drizzly showers that went worth putting waterproofs on for, the weather was overcast with the odd break of sunshine. Wee count; 5 total so far 26

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Day 5 Patterdale to Shap (15 miles)

The forecast for today was good &amp so would be fitting finale for our last day in the lakes. We ascended towards Boredale Hause & chatted with other c2cers that we would not see after today. As we ascended we got great views of Ullswater & Helvellyn that the low cloud had prevented yesterday.

At Boredale Hause we almost went wrong as we almost followed the crowd but quickly realised our mistake & put some other C2Cers right. We ascended further & took a minor detour to Angletarn Pike, that was Wainwright no. 210 only 4 to go! After that we passed the beautful Angle Tarn.

We then almost missed the correct turn but some walkers that we had been talking to before put us right. ThheI summit of Kidsty Pike is the highhest point of the recognised C2c but we were taking a different route to shorten the walk along Ullswater. This allowed some great views of Lakeland & Ullswater but alas no view of England’s last golden eagle. A long moorland tramp led us to the shores of Ullswater & numerous dragon flies plus last looks at Mardale.

At the end of the lake we met up with some ladies we had chatted with previously & together navigated through farmland, Mike proved he knew better than the guidebook on 1 occaison, now that we are out of the lakes we will rely on the guidebook a lot more. We arrived just by Shap Abbey & prevailed ourselves of the farmers ad hoc off licence!

After a tour of Shap Abbey we made our way to Shap & said goodbye to. ant ex.

Wee count 5 Total 21

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Day 4 Wed 1st Aug Grasmere to Patterdale 17 miles

After raining all night thankfully it had clared by breakfast, the forcast was dire with low cloud, high winds & heavy rain & eaven lightening!! Having met up with my two adopted sons (see yesterdays blog) and checked they were ok with Striding Edge we set off & by lunch time I felt like a mother duck with three teenagers in tow!! Being still dry we discarded the waterproofs & started the ascent other than crossing some streams in full spate ther were no lssues, but the wind picked up as we climbed & the low cloud ruled out striding edge. At Grisedale Tarn the highest point today the wind chased waves in all directions across the tarns surface, we got our first view of the pennines which we will cross in a few days, the descent to Patterdale was uneventful though we did see two roe deer feeding in a nearby field, we were in Patterdale Youth Hostel by 2.30pm, just as our bags arrived & the rain started.

Wee count today 5

Total 16

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