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]

Tuesday 20 May 2008

Day 36 - Whaley Bridge to Edale

20 May
Distance: 9.75 miles
Number of vaguely mean looking animals: 0

One of the many good things about viewing the country at a speed of less than 3mph is that you get to see the details. In particular you get to have a good look at houses and gardens.

With the first half of today being along roads and lanes, with houses dotted around, it was a good day for admiring the architecture.

A very slight detour was taken during the morning to take in the top of Eccles Pike. I'd promised Mick before we set out that it was only a 50 pace detour. It turned out to be a little more than that, but for the views it was well worth while, for although it was a touch chilly today the weather was fine and the views clear.

Chapel-ELF took us a while to pass through. It was the pie shop that first distracted us (best Homity Pie I've ever had) and the supermarket that last distracted us, with various other things in between (including the worst toilet facilities encountered so far).

Beyond Chapel-ELF we got back out into open country, and with it we were rejoined by the twitterings of skylarks, which have been absent for the last week.

Approaching Edale we were tempted to just cut across to Upper Booth, thus cutting some distance off today and even more off tomorrow. Looking at the map for a moment the big zig-zag over to Edale didn't look sensible. Then I recalled that if we didn't come to Edale then we wouldn't walk the whole of the Pennine Way, which would rather make pointless going out of our way to Kirk Yetholm at the end of the Way.

It's a good job that we did come to Edale too, because there we were sitting in the tent when another backpacker appeared.

"You must be Gayle and Mick" he said.

"This is no coincidental meeting" I thought (not a lot gets past me!).

It turned out to be Trentham Walker, also known as Jeff, with whom we have spent our evening and with whom we will hopefully walk at least part of tomorrow.

Jeff is a self-confessed gear head. We are in our element.

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