Day 6: the final push

Day 6 started with rain (again!) and the prospect of a further 27 miles in wet weather gear on my own was not being looked forward to.

First things first, after learning on day 5 that it is not a good idea to start a long distance walk with no substantial breakfast, we had our traditional full English and I got Julian’s portion of mushrooms and black pudding 🙂

Another matter at hand was my left knee which has a historic injury from the Peddars Way Challenge back in 2008. It had been ok so far but it was really painful in the morning. Luckily I managed to purchase a knee support from the chemist before I set off. This proved to be invaluable on the days walk.

Starting from Kirkbymoorside my route took me across the moors to Appleton-le-Moors where I met a friendly bunch of Ramblers who cheered me on, I had to cross a little weir which luckily wasn’t very deep.

My route then took me down into a ravine with a most isolated farmyard with lots of calves wandering about near the North Yorks Moors Railway- unfortunately I missed the train by 4 minutes so was unable to get any photos for Dylan and Leon.

A very steep climb out of the ravine lead me to the Fox and Rabbit pub where I had a most lovely cheese and pickle sandwich and chips.

From here it was a massive trek across the Dalby and Wykeham forests- considering it is a Saturday I did not bump into that many mountain bikers along the way

At the village of Eversley I passed a cafe which was closed, and probably just as well, as I may have stopped and not started again

Following the Tabular Hills Walk route along a small river to the outskirts of Scarborough, I mustered my last remaining energy to walk the 4 miles across town to the final destination at the Scarborough Lifeboat Station.

 

A most intense 6 days walking- I have seen lots of lovely scenery, met lots of nice and friendly people, and pushed myself harder than ever before.

  • Liam

Day 5: on my own

We awoke in the morning in a somber mood. Despite our best efforts it was apparent that Julian’s feet were not healing enough to enable him to cover any great distance.

We set off at a very slow pace debating whether to both finish the challenge early or whether I continued on my own.

Along the very busy A170, one of the main routes to Scarborough, we took a detour to the village of Bagby- this was to be Julian’s final stop of the walk, of which he had acted very bravely indeed.

From Bagby my route took me up a steep B road and across marshland to the White Horse sculpture- imposing as you approach from the foothills and past the busy Yorkshire Gliding Club

At Hambleton I took an ill-advised detour through what can only be described as a pine rainforest- I stumbled down into a ravine and was trying to hack my way through the foliage to find a way out- luckily I manage to follow the river bed all the way through the forest to the Rievaulx Bridge

The route then followed the Cleaveland Way National Trail to the very picturesque town of Helmsley where I stocked up on supplies before the final push to Kirkbymoorside and our final nights stay at the lovely George and Dragon Hotel- I even had sticky toffee pudding, I was that hungry!

Final Hours of Walk

The coast to coast walk is reaching its final hours – Liam is a few miles away from Scarborough now. I’m in the pub   🙂

More photos to be added over the weekend – thanks for all the messages during the week, much appreciated!

Kindness of Strangers

One thing that we’ve found this week is the exceptional kindness which so many people have shown, people who we’ve never met.

We’ve had a camp-site owner help dry out our clothes and drive us to the pub, we’ve had a member of kitchen staff find us boxes to send things home in and we’ve had members of the public stop to offer us a lift.

There was a man who stopped us in Thirsk who had heard our story the day before, when we telling a cafe owner, and he had overheard and wanted to talk to us. We had a shop assistant tell us of her huge challenge in a few months for charity and tens of other people have offered support.

Near to the beginning of the walk we were stopped by a man who asked us where we were heading. He mentioned that he’d always wanted to do a coast to coast challenge but never got round to it, although he had done lots of cycling. He regretted that he had never done it.

And at the end of the walk (for me) in Scarborough I was standing at the bar and a pleasant guy told the barman I had been at the bar first. We got talking and he kindly bought me a pint – and mentioned how much people miss when they don’t explore the area they live in.

So, although our challenge wasn’t particularly difficult on the scale, it has reminded me just how great people are. Keen to help, willing to engage and reassuring me just how wonderful our society is.

Rubbish Along the Road

One thing we noticed at the beginning of the walk, near Lancaster, was the amount of McDonald’s litter everywhere. At first we assumed that we were near one of their restaurants and it was just debris that had been dropped and blown there.

As we walked further into the countryside it became more apparent that we were nowhere near a McDonald’s. But still the litter continued. We tried a little survey mid-walk, when we were tens of miles away from any of the burger chain’s outlets. Over half the litter was McDonald’s, and this repeated throughout the week.

McDonald’s claim that they take litter picking carefully. But our experience was that they need to do more as there were literally thousands of pieces of their litter across the country. No other company matched the amount of packaging scattered everywhere….

Day Five : Morecambe to Bagby Inn

Liam is battling on but for me my coast to coast has been renamed Morecambe to Bagby Inn. Perhaps that’s more exciting than Morecambe to Scarborough…. After over 90 miles and five and a bit days my blisters were too much. I managed to limp to a pub and have now got to Kirbymoorside which was our original fifth night stop.

This does though mean I can catch up on all the blog posts   🙂

 

Walking across the country….