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]

Friday 30 May 2008

Day 46 - Keld to Brown Rigg Moss

30 May
Distance: 13 miles
Number of inconsiderate campers encountered: 1 group of 5

Perhaps I'm just on my way to becoming a grumpy old woman, but as well as not liking people pitching their tent within touching distance of ours, I also don't much appreciate noise at night.

In fact, I'm not sure that it's ever acceptable for one group of people to subject strangers to their choice of music, at any time of day, but particularly when it's clear that everyone else has gone to bed.

Our saviour was the rain. The music was coming from a car with the door open. The rain caused the music to be curtailed and the group to retreat to their tent.

Still, out of twenty eight nights on campsites only two annoying incidents isn't a bad record.

Today brought a break from our usual routine. We didn't want to start early as we didn't want to finish early. So, rather than a 6am alarm, we woke at 7.30 - a blissful lie-in.

The lie-in was followed by a very lazy morning. It was 11am by the time we came to leave Keld (another lovely place to which we will return in September when we walk the Coast to Coast).

The earlier rain had abated by the time we set out up the valley, soon leaving behind all signs of civilisation. Then, two hours later into sight came the Tan Hill Inn, which claims to be the highest Inn in Britain at 1762 feet, and its car park was heaving.

Beer so early in our walk seemed ill-advised even if it was 1pm, so we just popped by for a glass of pop before setting out across Sleightholme Moor.

The moor was wet underfoot and there was moisture in the air too, but that didn't detract from the beauty of the place (if you like bleak-ish open spaces). We even spotted some excellent potential camp spots towards the far end, but it was still early in the day.

Lunch (a very late one) was had at God's Bridge, an interesting geological feature (being a natural bridge), which is unfortunately within sight and sound of the A66.

At the first water point the other side of the A66 we picked up some incredibly peaty water ("just the colour of wee", Mick helpfully observed) to see us through the night, as this is our first wild-camp of the trip.

We're now sitting in the tent very close indeed to the Pennine Way, but it seems unlikely that anyone will be passing by at this time of day (famous last words?). Since pitching the tent the skies have cleared and we can see for miles. It's fantastic.

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