The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Pennine Way (top bit) Day 5 (Which Wasn’t On The Pennine Way At All)

Wednesday 11 April (0835-0920)

Distance: 2 miles

Ascent: Too tiny to count

The plan for today didn’t involve much of the Pennine Way to start with, and the reality didn’t involve any.

I didn’t want to walk the section over to Greenhead for two reasons. Firstly, I intend for us to walk Hadrian’s Wall at some point so we’ll cover that ground then, and secondly, the section from Greenhead to Alston is reputed to be an uninteresting day which serves simply to join more interesting things. I also didn’t want to walk straight down to Alston along the South Tyne Trail, because we did that walk northbound in 2008 and I as I didn’t enjoy it then I didn’t see value in wasting a day on it now.

So, the plan was that we would walk the 7 miles down to Lambley and jump on a bus to Alston, then walk out beyond Garrigill to camp the night, which would position us nicely for Cross Fell tomorrow.

The reality of the day was that we walked the 2-miles to Haltwhistle train station and caught a train home.

We omitted the summit of Cross Fell in 2008 due to foul weather, opting to skirt it instead. We also didn’t get to see the golf-ball on Great Dunn Fell, even when standing at the fence of the radar station, because it was so cloud-bound. I’d really like to see both of those places, and their views, in reasonable weather. I certainly didn’t want to be standing atop Cross Fell in the lashing rain and feeling cold and miserable – which looked the most likely scenario if we pushed on this week.

So, we’re home and all of the kit is now being cleaned and dried, ready for the next trip, which is, after all, only 5 days away.


  1. Sound as a pound.
    Quite right too.

    Mind you, you missed a nice pub just off the Tyne trail on the left as you head south...

  2. I'm glad. Makes me feel a whole lot better.

  3. Pleased to see you took my advice!
    (There's a first time for everything!)
    Hope the next trip goes a bit better weather-wise. (I really do, I'll be out there somewhere too.)

  4. I thought about you yesterday as i couldn’t see out of our front window due to the hail that was bouncing around.
    Hope you get some better weather next week.

  5. Great little trip (little?!) - something of a kill or cure, by the sound of it.

    Hope you are both in trim and raring to go next week. Have a good time - I'm looking forward to following your progress.

  6. Mick and Gayle out walking again - YAY was the first reaction. Blogs are great as always, can't wait for you guys getting going again :). Take care, Maike