GRIMWITH RESERVOIR WALK - Saturday 23rd January
Distance 15 miles
The walkers were amazed to find large quantities of snow remaining on the moors, as they arrived at the car park by Grimwith Reservoir. Ron's bacon butties were devoured prior to circumventing the reservoir, before heading off cross-country in the direction of Burnsall.
|The walkers stopped to gaze at a sunken pond, which had left the ice strangely suspended.|
|On reaching the swollen River Wharfe, near Hebden, the walkers were unable to cross the suspension bridge without gathering for a group photo. Crossing the river by the usual stepping stones proved impossible, as they were totally submerged by the dangerous fast flowing river.|
The walkers took an alternative route into Burnall to admire a large
timber constructed conservatory that they found was attached to the
village school, by the Church.
They then took time to consume individual Pork Pies, courtesy of Neil. Larger portions of Alan's Mars Bar Crispies were made available, due to the fewer number of walkers.
The walkers continued to the Craven Arms in Appletreewick, where after initially sitting outside in the sun for one pint with chips, they went inside for a further 3 pints from the fine selection of Real Ales on offer.
Only too quickly after their lunchtime stop the walkers found themselves having to navigate the treacherous flooded "Trollers Gill". However their extreme skill enabled them to avoid certain death in the fast running cold waters, by jumping from slippery rock to rock.
On reaching Stump Cross Caverns, the walkers quickly realised that they had spend too long in the pub at lunchtime and as the light faded they made their way back up an ill-defined footpath using the light from Alan's torch. They were relieved to reach the cars back at Grimwith Reservoir after yet another enjoyable walk.
Weather: Very cold, but some sun broke out on occasions, although very wet underfoot.
Walkers: Neil, Ron, Alan and Tom, with Moss the Dog
RICHMOND/RAVENSWORTH WALK – Saturday 20th February
Distance 15 miles
The walkers met at 8.30am in Richmond’s main car park to enjoy Cliff’s bacon butties, prior to setting off up the narrow footpath between the houses up onto the old racecourse above Richmond.
The path continued on through Richmond Golf Course to Aske Hall, which looked splendid in the sunshine.
|A little further on the grand Aske Hall Stables were reached, where the group met up with Ron. He had just returned from a very early morning chauffeuring job to Manchester Airport and was being dropped of by his very considerate wife Marion.|
The walkers headed off and before long were met with the unexpected obstacle of crossing a beck near Harforth Hall. The footbridge, damaged some time ago, was still missing and the walkers stepped and balanced very carefully and strategically on a number of wobbly rocks to cross the fast flowing beck. Thankfully there were no boots full of water.
|Ravensworth was reached at 11.45am and the opportunity taken to have lunch sitting on the circular bench around the old oak tree on the village green in the sunshine, prior to the pub opening.|
The walkers gathered promptly at door for the 12 noon opening of the Bay Horse to be met by Sue, the landlady who made them very welcome by serving copious quantities of a particularly well received Moorhouses Pride of Pendle ale and bowls of chips. The group agreed this pub still holds the top spot for the quality and value of the chips.
|After refreshments the group admired the remains of Ravensworth Castle, before heading up the steep hill to Kirby Hill and then onwards, this time getting the right path (thanks to Cliff) out of Kirby Hill towards Whashton.|
The group were somewhat amazed to find there was still a decent depth of snow on the tops near Beacon Plantation which made it all the moor scenic and enjoyable. Alas Brad took his statutory “bit of a tumble” here but no serious injury was incurred.
|The slightly longer route was selected, via Coalsgarth Edge and down the track into Richmond, providing excellent views over the River Swale valley and Richmond.|
The destination and cars were reached at 4.30pm
|The walkers failed to resist the attraction of another bridge and gathered so that the occasion could be photographically recorded|
Weather: Sunny all day, with the ground frozen in the morning.
Walkers: Cliff (leader), Andy, Paul, Ron, Neil, Brad and Tom with Moss the dog.
RICHMOND BIRTHDAY BOYS WALK - Saturday 20th March
Distance 11+ miles
The walkers were disappointed to find a miserable wet day ahead of them when they gathered in the old town of Richmond. Their spirits were lifted by Ron's excellent bacon and sausage butties, before they set off following a hilly route adjacent to the river. Much consulting with the maps was required at an early stage to ensure that the correct route was chosen, as they trudged on in the very wet, muddy and slippery conditions. After crossing the river the route took the walkers up steep road to join a familiar footpath with views that were unable to be enjoyed fully due to the swirling mists.
|Following a long trudge through Whitecliffe Wood the walkers found themselves heading up Deep Dale, where they stopped for a group photo in the appalling conditions, before stopping again briefly for refreshments|
|The route altered to head back towards Richmond, where they stopped for a lecture from Cliff at the memorial to Willance's Leap, where in Nov 1606, Richard Willance, a local entrepreneurial draper, with lead mining interests, survived an accident when he rode his horse off Whitcliffe Scar, in swirling mists, similar to those encountered by the walkers that very day.|
|Arriving back in Richmond the walkers stopped at a suitable point to allow Neil to present and share his specially prepared pork pie with the group, to celebrate the forthcoming 60th birthdays of the two birthday boys (Ron & Alan).|
The celebrations continued on arrival at the Holly Hill Inn with birthday cake (with candles) and birthday chips, together with quantities of Black Sheep Ale.
(Ron would like it to be known that he was only drinking shandy and was not as pissed as he looks. He claims that he has a deceptive face)
Despite talk of abandoning the walk at this stage the hardened walkers (Except Tom & Moss the dog) set off on the second stage of the walk, where after much scaling of barbed wire fences, the walkers located the require path to take them back towards Richmond and the cars.
|As is customary the walkers accurately located a bridge and gathered to record the event|
Considering the poor weather all agreed that it had been an excellent walk and Brad was pleased to confirm that he had not taken his characteristic "bit of a tumble" throughout the whole walk.
Weather: Pouring rain all day!!
Walkers: Cliff, Andy, Paul, Ron, Andy (Ron's Son), Alan, Neil, Brad and Tom with Moss the dog.
FARNDALE DAFFY WALK - Saturday 10th April
Distance approx 15 miles
An excellent turnout of 11 walkers arrived in good spirit at the Car Park in Low Mill at the late hour of 9am. They were quick to enjoy Cliff's excellent bacon and sausage butties, before setting off through the village to start the ascent of the steep dale side to reach Rudland Rigg. The walkers quickly found the footpath closed and attempted to climb the steep hill clinging on only to the undergrowth to keep themselves upright. On reaching the top the walkers headed northwards for many miles along the long straight track towards the Dale head.
|The walkers rested on a grassy bank to the side of the track to share portions of Pork Pie and Mars Bar Crispies during their long walk in the sunshine.|
After their break they continued on the track towards Bloworth Crossing, but selected a footpath to the right, that proved ill-defined, steep and wet, down the steep gully forming the start of the River Dove.
The walkers characteristically located at bridge over the River Dove where they posed for a group photo. Afterwards and much to their relief, the footpath eventually turned into a better track leading to long quiet road heading back towards Churchhouses.
|The walkers were relieved to arrive at the Faversham Arms in Churchouses and although quite late, they found a sunny location outside where they feasted upon portions of chips together with much Black Sheep Ale, in the hot sunshine.|
After their refreshing lunchtime stop, the walkers finally located the fields of wild daffodils and can be seen above again in high spirits. A relaxing riverside stroll took them back to Low Mill and their cars after a what they agreed was a tough but thoroughly enjoyable walk.
Weather: Sunny and warm all day
Walkers: Neil (leader), Alan, Cliff, Ron Andy, Paul, Tom and Brad, together with Brad's son Mark and 2 friends Mark & Paul plus 2 dogs.
HACK FALL WOODS / GREWELTHORPE WALK - Saturday 15th May
Distance 14 miles
The smaller group of walkers than usual met, on an ideal sunny day, on the outskirts of North Stainley at 8.30am to enjoy Ron’s bacon butties, which were at their usual high standard.
|The walk took them through North Stainley when they came across an historic conical roofed toll house. An opportunity to imprison Brad was taken, but surprisingly he soon escaped to rejoin the others|
|The route of the Ripon Rowel took them along the banks of the River Ure and a cooling dip was taken by Paul’s dog Archie taking advantage of a convenient weir|
|A stop was taken on reaching West Tanfield to visit the 15th century former gatehouse Marmion Tower which was duly climbed and investigated|
The route continued along the River Ure, when a rope swing was spotted in woodland. Big kid Neil had to have a go, luckily for him the rope didn’t snap. The village of Mickley was passed with their stylish cottages and houses lining the main street, prior to reaching Hack Fell Woods.
|This is an interesting wooded area with grottos, streams, waterfalls and strangely a pond with turquoise coloured water. The area had been landscaped apparently by a John Aislabie from Mowbray Hall back around the 1730/40s. The opportunity was taken to enjoy pork pies in one of the grottos here|
|The path continued up to Limehouse Hill where spectacular views could be enjoyed over the woodland below and across to the Hambleton Hills|
|On leaving Limehill, in an adjacent field, a lamb with a difference was spotted, with half its face and neck being black, the rest being a normal sheep colour, whatever that’s called. A sheep version of a birthmark I guess, or perhaps one of its grand parents had misbehaved in the past|
|It was a relatively gentle walk from here through woodland and across fields to enjoy the fare The Crown at Grewelthorpe had to offer – Jennings Cumberland Ale. Being responsible and healthy the chaps, already having had plenty of food, made the decision to abstain from portions of chips – admirable!!|
|An alternative route back from Grewelthorpe was chosen taking the group through Coat Bank Wood, a very attractive wooded area with swathes of bluebells in full bloom. It was in this area that Brad grasped his chance to take his statutory “bit of a tumble” – twice, but appeared to resume upright position again unscathed, with no apparent damage to himself.|
|On reaching the hamlet of Musterfield, the group were surprised to see a number of very old vintage cars, including an Alvis and Bentley proceeding along the narrow country lane on some sort of rally.|
The afternoon’s warm sunshine and clear views made the remainder of the walk across fields back to North Stainley very enjoyable. The destination and cars being reached at 4.15pm.
Weather: Sunny all day, with a little light cloud around lunchtime.
Walkers: Neil (leader), Ron, Brad and Paul F with Archie the dog.
GUNNERSIDE WALK - Saturday 19th June
Distance 14 Miles
An enthusiastic small group of walkers arrived at 8-45 to feast upon Cliff's bacon and sausage butties, before setting off up the long track following Gunnerside Beck
|The path climbed relentlessly until evidence of their toil became apparent when they stopped at a vantage point overlooking Gunnerside Gill to record the event photographically|
|The walkers were overjoyed to have accurately located the hidden Lead Mine workings deep in the hills. However, this success spurred them onwards to try and locate the infamous Blackethwaite Dams|
The walkers were horrified to find that the Blackethwaite Dams had been breached and suspected alien influences
|Whilst considering what actions they must take, they decided to share their portions of Pork Pie, together with some of their Mars Bar Crispies.|
|After completely rebuilding the dams using the stone around them, they set off down the steep valley in search of bridges and beer.|
The walkers were quick to locate a number of bridges on their travels over the long and lonely Lownathwaite Moor, cunningly taking an alternative and difficult route to avoid the dangers of Keld.
|The river was successfully crossed at Ramps Holme foot bridge enabling them to arrive at Muker in time for the wedding. However, they decided not to join in with the festivities and instead visited the Farmers Arms to enjoy a number of refreshing pints of Ale in the sunshine sitting outside.|
|The walkers left the Farmers Arms in high spirits, again crossing Ramps Holme foot bridge and then following parallel to the River Swale, passing though miles of buttercup meadows (sponsored by DEFRA)|
Arriving back at the cars, the walkers agreed that this had been a splendid walk and made arrangements to meet again on the 17th July for further walking adventures.
Weather: Sunny and pleasant all day
Walkers: Cliff (leader), Neil, Alan & Sean
REETH WALK - Saturday 17th July
Distance 13 Miles
The walkers gathered at Reeth to enjoy Ron's Sausage & Bacon Butties, before setting off over the Arkle Beck river through High Fremington. The walkers quickly realised that the route was taking them up the steep roadway towards to Fremington Edge. Having turned onto the footpath they continued to climb steadily, although the the excellent views were slightly obscured.
|At the very highest point on the walk the walkers took the opportunity to rest in a small hollow to enjoy portions of Pork Pie and some Mars Bar Crispies|
|Unable to locate any bridges cunning walkers found a disused Lime Kiln, which they considered closely resembled a bridge and characteristically posed for a photo, which Ron tested its strength|
On the steep and dangerous descent from Fremington Edge the walkers resisted the urge to visit the small village called 'Booze'. The route continued following Arkle Beck into the village of Langthwaite where they were relieved to find the Red Lion open. They sat outside consuming a refreshing pint ale before they set of again through the village. They opted to take a footpath, running parallel to the river, before turning uphill towards the main road where, to their great relief they found 'The CB Inn'.
|Further ale was taken sitting in the warm surroundings, whilst Paul F elected to stay with the dogs outside in the cold and wet conditions. Alan negotiated the chip deal, which was quickly served and enjoyed by the exhausted walkers.|
|The strain could be seen on Ron's face as the other walkers left the pub, careful not to disturb his slumbers. They continued onward in the wet conditions soon to be caught up by a refreshed Ron.|
The route took the walkers along the main road, turning to go through Arkle Town before the footpath disappeared !!!
|Very quickly it became apparent that our leader Cliff was lost!! Only after some map reading and several GPS fixes were the walkers able to relocate the correct route towards Reeth and the safety of their cars.|
Eventually the footpath
turned into a road and they continued along the lonely route seeing
no other signs of life.
Archie saved the day by accurately locating the Town of Reeth, much to the obvious relieve of the others.
|Once back in the safety of Reeth the walkers located their cars, changed and bid farewell to their chums. They travelling onward to their homes having agreed to attempt another walk on the 14th August.|
Weather: A Warm walking day to start, but with some rain around lunchtime and overcast thereon
Walkers: Cliff (leader), Neil, Alan, Ron, Paul, Brad, Tom with Moss the dog and Paul F with Archie the dog
THORALBY WALK - Saturday 14th August
Distance 13 Miles
|The walkers gathered outside Cliff's house in Thoralby at 8-30am, where they proudly showed off Cliff's splendid Bacon & Sausage butties.|
They set off around 8-55 soon gathering on a bridge to gaze upon the marvels of Asgarth Falls
Cliff guided the walkers to a viewing gallery, where they were amazed to view the giant Middle Falls
|The cunning walkers locate an ideal shelter from the rain in a bus shelter in Carperby, where they enjoy the first of Andy's pork pies, together with some of Alan's mars bar crispies.|
The responsible walkers always ensure they follow the Countryside Code by using styles provided, wherever they are located.
|The walkers on reaching a small stream discover no suitable bridge. Using their considerable skills, and numerous stones laying nearby, they set about constructing a stone arched bridge. However, as lunchtime was approaching, they decided to leave the final completion to the locals, so that they would be able to gain full credit for the new bridge.|
The walkers on arriving at Askrigg, quickly located "The Crown Inn" where they enjoyed plentiful ale, accompanied by large bowls of chips.
On leaving Askrigg the walkers headed to cross the river near Worton, where they rested for a while and consumed their last Pie and crispies. A short stop was made at the "Victoria Arms" Worton, where a single pint of dubious quality Guest Ale was consumed.
|After lunch the walkers were quick to locate a bridge, where as is customary, they posed for a group photo.|
|The walkers were humbled to find that the residents of the village of Thorton Rust had put on a Country Fair in honour of the walkers. Several of the walkers succumb to the splendid array of cakes on offer.|
The final section of the walk took them over the top of the dale dropping them back into Thoralby to complete another enjoyable walk. The walkers departed to their homes agreeing to meet again in September.
Weather: Light rain in the morning, getting better after lunch turning into a warm afternoon
Walkers: Cliff (leader), Neil, Alan, Ron, Paul, Andy, Mark & Brad
ALNCLIFFE WALK - Saturday 25th September
Distance 14.2 Miles
The walkers gathered on the green at Alncliffe awaiting arrival of Paul F with bacon butties, but having failed to check their emails that morning, discovered that Paul was unable to walk. Under the leadership of Alan they departed just after 9am, without the benefit of bacon butties. The route took the walkers upwards along Monks Road, eventually reaching Middle House. Shortly afterwards Cliff suggested cutting the corner of the route in order to make up valuable time necessary to reach the lunchtime stop. Although Alan protested, the walkers quickly took the revised route under the temporary leadership of Cliff. However, as predicted the navigation proved inadequate and the walkers drifted eastward, requiring corrective action.
|Surprisingly the walkers intersected Mastiles Lane on the original route and quickly stopped to share portions of Pork Pie with integral pickle. Relieved to be back on course, Alan again took leadership and the happy walkers posed for a group photo.|
The remainder of Mastiles Lane took the walkers to Kilnsey, arriving at their lunchtime stop in the Tennant Arms on schedule.
Despite the excellent chips on offer, Ron refused to participate and slowly sipped his lime and lemonades.
|The strain of the walking, chips and ale, soon took their toll on Tom, but the walkers refused to leave him at the pub.|
The walkers left the Tennant Arms in good spirit and in good weather conditions strided onwards towards the village of Hawkswick.
Alan accurately guided the walkers to the only footbridge over the River Skirfare, where after their customary photo, they shared their last portions of Pork Pie, without integral pickle.
The remainder of the walk back to Alncliffe was uneventful under the firm leadership of Alan. The walkers departed to their homes agreeing to meet again for the Newtondale Trail in October.
Weather: A surprisingly dry and pleasant walking day
Walkers: Alan(leader), Neil, Cliff, Ron, Paul, Andy, Brad & Tom, with Moss the dog
NEWTONDALE TRAIL - Saturday 16th October (Wartime Weekend)
Distance: 18miles with about 1,700ft of climbing - Pickering to Grosmont, via Goathland. Lunch stop at "The Birch Hall Inn" Beck Hole. Steam train back to Pickering.
A select band embarked on the Newtondale Trail this year, late withdrawals having been received Alan and Sean, who's wife was poorly leaving him literally holding the baby (very obviously a member Walsh dynasty) in the morning as they called to collect him. Generously, Sean however, presented the walkers with a very welcome large Appleton’s Pork Pie to take with them, which complemented the two large pies brought by Andy. At the start point in Rosamund Avenue in Pickering, at 8.30am, Paul F provided excellent Bacon Butties and Virgin Marys (spicy tomato juice) for the assembled group followed by hot sausages marinated in brown sauce. A culinary delight unsurpassed in the annals of walking nosh.
|This tasty feast delayed the start until 8.45am, but quickly the walkers got into their stride, following the very familiar route, walked annually many a time over previous years. They headed towards Levisham, to meet up with Cliff, who was to join the group there.|
Sure enough he was spotted leaning on a gate awaiting their arrival. After a brief coffee & pork pie stop, the group headed over the moor passing a larger than usual herd of Highland cattle, that seemed to be attracted to parked cars at the side of the road using them as rubbing posts, taking the shine off the cars, no doubt, to the horror of their returning owners.
Down into the valley, under the railway at Newtondale Halt, the group debated the best way to tackle the hill up onto Wardle Rigg. As the usual route was very overgrown, they elected to turn left in an attempt to locate the steep and direct Newtondale Horse Trail path up to the summit.
|The skilled walkers soon found this path which proved to be a far better underfoot than the previously used route, albeit it did test their stamina, being quite steep. Having had some of Andy’s energy building pork and black-pudding pie earlier, this proved to be well within their ability. As it was something like their 28th walking of the Newtondale, many would think that it would be difficult to refine the route further.|
On reaching the sheepfold for the lunchtime stop, no one was hungry, just thirsty, although it was noted with some regret, particularly by Cliff, that here seemed to be a dearth of Mars Bar Crispies this year and at his request, a plea is made to Sue for extra supplies next walk. The stop was brief as the group wanted to get on to the pub stop at Beck Hole.
As usual the walk over the moor seemed to go on and on with the two boob shaped hillocks in the distance not seeming to get any closer.
With Goathland finally in sight, they knew Beck Hole and the pub stop wasn’t too far off. Not surprisingly the pace seemed to quicken down the old incline railway track-bed as they neared the Birch Hall Inn at 2.30pm.
|Everyone seemed especially thirsty and some of the group were witnessed drinking pints of Coke to re-hydrate themselves, prior to indulging in pints of ale (except Ron).|
Setting off from the Birch Hall Inn, it was a short 45 minute walk from Beck Hole along to Grosmont station, where the familiar Wartime Weekend event was in full steam.
The scenery was awash with Soldiers, Sailors and Airman of all the participating nations abounded not to mention all sorts of contemporary civilians.
Later in the day, Andy's position of Pie Monitor was questioned after a secret emergency committee meeting to discuss his loss of three segments of pie. Alas, it was realised the remaining segments of pie had been left on the station bench by mistake and there was a tear or two as they passed them, still on the bench, as the train departed. It was generally thought that clemency was the only course of action for the Pie Monitor, but the others were not sure. The steam train back to Pickering was very busy with military services personnel and their gals, Cliff alighting at Levisham station. Overall an excellent day marred only by the perverse behaviour of Paul Fryer’s mini. Be warned. If you open your mini, put your dog on the front passenger seat and throw your keys on to the drivers seat by the time you walk around to the drivers door the bl**dy machine will lock itself. Poor old Paul was locked out, Archie was locked in. Our sympathies are extended to Paul’s wife who was last heard of setting out from Kirkby Overblow with the spare set. Paul we hope that you have managed to get home.
Weather: A slightly drizzly start drying up to a very pleasant day.
Walkers: Cliff (joining at Leversham), Andy, Ron, Neil and Paul F with Archie the dog.
MARSKE WALK - Saturday 20th November
Distance 14 Miles
The eager walkers arrived at the usual parking location in Marske at 8-30am and were quick to devour Cliff's excellent Bacon & Sausage butties. They set off up through Marske village to Applegarth following an elevated path, familiar in places, heading back into Richmond town. Crossing the river in Richmond the walkers followed the river pathway stopping briefly in Calfhall Wood for nourishing Pie and Mars Bar crispies, before continuing the difficult route.
|A large group of less experienced walkers had to be passed before they made a long ascent up endless steps on Hudswell Bank heading towards the village of Hudswell.|
|Shortly afterwards Neil located a number of pigs whilst walking through a muddy field, who recognising his kindred spirit, hurried over to enjoy his personal attention.|
|The walkers arrived at an early hour (11-30am) in Hudswell gathering at the rear of the George and Dragon. Cliff arranged for the pub to open early, so that the walkers could rest and warm up in the friendly surroundings of North Yorkshire's first community owned pub.|
|Joined by Tom on his bicycle, several pints of ale were enjoyed, along with portions of chips (Including Bread and Butter).|
|The walkers left the pub in light rain with misty conditions as they made their way back across moorland towards Marske. They were perturbed to find out that the route took them beyond the finishing point, before they were able to drop down to the road near Downholme and turn back towards the finish.|
A section of road walking, followed by a shortcut close to the river, were accomplished before Marske came into sight. The walkers were pleased to reach their cars after a hard and wet walk, but vowed to meet again on the 13th December for a further walking challenge.
Weather: A damp day turning into light but persistent rain in the afternoon.
Walkers: Cliff (leader), Andy, Alan, Neil, Sean and Ron, with Ella the dog. Guest appearance by Tom during the lunchtime stop.
BURNSALL WALK - Saturday 11th December
Distance 14 Miles
The walkers arrived in a sleepy Burnsall village at 8-30, quickly enjoying Ron's bacon and sausage butties as they waited for the full contingent to arrive. However, the reality soon dawned on them, that Andy (the pie monitor) was not walking and that alternative pie supplies had not been procured. In a despondent mood, the four walkers set off, crossing Burnsall Bridge and heading uphill to reach Burnsall Lane for a short distance.
|They turned off following a swollen stream, stopped briefly on a bridge for a group photo, whilst trying to hide their disappointment at the lack of Pork Pie|
The walkers having travelled through the village of Hebden, passed several picturesque waterfalls, before encountering more difficult conditions, as they followed Hebden Beck, trying to reach Hole Bottom.
|The footpath meandered from side to side crossing the stream, but the swollen conditions made crossing impossible. However, the cunning walkers quickly devised an ingenious method of crossing the river.|
Successfully conquering Hebden Beck, they quickly came into an old lead mining area, where they marvelled at the old workings before reaching Yarbury.
|Progress was slow as they very carefully negotiated a snow filled roadway, regularly falling into waist deep snow. The experienced walkers were not perturbed by this and continued across the moor, desperately trying to intersect the 'Dales Way'.|
|Much relieved at successfully locating the 'Dales Way', they stopped by an ancient lime kiln to share their rations, including Mars Bar crispies, but alas no Pork Pie,|
Slowly the route took the walkers down into civilisation as they approached Grassington.
The walkers were shocked to find the town full of people and quickly discovered that they were not there to welcome the walkers safe return. Instead they found that they were attending a giant Dickensian Festival.
The walkers quickly found out that there was 'No Room at the Inn' as they visited pub after pub looking for seating. Although they managed a single pint of Black Sheep sitting outside in the cold, they realised that there was no future for them in Grassington and studied a map to look for an alternative drinking establishment. After selecting the nearby village of Linton and confirming with a policeman that the pub would be open, they headed out of the town towards Linton.
|The walkers were delighted to find the Fountaine Inn to their liking, enjoying much Thwaites Original, together with some chips, by an open fire.|
Leaving the Fountaine Inn, the walkers calculated that several bridges had to be crossed before they could return to their original route back to Burnsall.
Arrival at the long suspension bridge, by the submerged stepping stones, indicated to the walkers that they were within striking distance of Burnsall and completion of the walk, although Moss the Dog, was not happy about crossing this dangerous contraption.
The walkers were jubilant to arrive back at their cars having completed another difficult walk, without the benefit of Pork Pie. They agreed to meet again for the Christmas walk, as they left for their homes and loved ones, after the successful completion of yet another incredible walk, under the leadership of Neil.
Weather: An amazingly pleasant walking day, after the recent snow falls
Walkers: Neil (leader), Alan, Ron, with Ella the dog and Tom with Moss the dog.
CHRISTMAS WALK - Tuesday 28th December (Tom's Birthday Walk)
Distance 13.9 miles
The familiar grass verge just south of Leyburn seemed lonely, dark and icy, as the gathered walkers awaited the arrival of the Thoralby contingent. However, they were greatly cheered by Ron's excellent Bacon and Sausage Butties. They set off at 9am, whilst listening to Cliff's stories of being stranded in the village by icy roads and remained in good spirit whilst they encountered snow covered fields towards Leyburn.
|They walked through the icy streets of Leyburn, before joining the "Leyburn Shawl" footpath in cold, snowy and foggy conditions.|
The walkers found sections of the roadway around Bolton Hall very icy and almost impossible to pass, but using their incredible skills were able to negotiate these difficult sections.
A breakfast stop, without Pork Pie, was made at Lords Bridge, whilst the walkers gazed at the semi-frozen River Ure. Alan, however, had brought ample supplies of Mars Bar Crispies to sustain the walkers through the near impossible conditions
|Cliff instructed the walkers to take the direct, but very steep, route up to the Middleham Gallops, but before this several of the walkers found difficulty in negotiating narrow stiles|
|Ron was quick to locate incredible ice displays as they followed the River Cover towards the Coverbridge Inn|
The walkers watched in amazement as Cliff ceremonially cut his excellent home made pie, which was served with large bowls of chips to the great appreciation of all.
Much merry making followed as the walkers proudly displayed their
Later the walkers befriended a family group on an adjacent table to find, to their amazement, that they came from Little Ribston and knew Peter Henry. Her name was Hilary Cooper.
As it was Tom's birthday, he was collected from the pub, by his wife and spared any further walking, claiming to be having an early birthday dinner followed by watching the match at a local pub. The others put on their wet boots to commence the final stage of their walk.
Although this section of the walk proved difficult, the walkers characteristically located a bridge and gathered for a group photo
On reaching Alan's car, the others awaited the arrival of their lift and departed to their homes, all agreeing that this was a very successful end to the 2010 walking diary.
Weather: Dull, cold, icy and rather misty, walking the entire route in rather slushy snow.
Walkers: Ron, Neil, Alan, Sean, Paul, Andy, Cliff and Tom with Moss the dog.
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