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Journeyman's Coast to Coast Journal 2006
Wednesday 21 June - Reeth to Richmond
It was quite busy at breakfast time and I sensed Rebecca was under a bit of stress, she wasn’t her cheerful self. It did not affect the quality of the breakfast or the service and in no time at all we were refreshed and ready to go. Tim walked past our B & B from his camp site and I gave him the thumbs up as he headed towards Richmond. I looked for Ted, who was also staying on the same camp site, but didn’t see him walk by. The KK and myself were packed and ready for the off at 8.40am. It was a sunny pleasant morning with a slight breeze – ideal for walking. We were heading for Marrick Priory first and chose to walk across the fields by the River Swale for the mile and a half rather than the road. We set off at a cracking pace which everyone coped with comfortably. We continued beyond Marrick priory up the Nuns Steps through the woods to Marrick village and then onward to Marske arriving at 10.30am. Not bad ladies 6 miles in less than 2 hours. As we approached Marske we saw Ted a couple of fields in front of us and actually caught up with him at the telephone kiosk in Marske.
This was a convenient point as Ted was trying to ascertain the telephone number of Osmotherly YH without success but the KK were able to assist as they were also staying there in a couple of days and had the telephone number on their itinerary. It was decision time for the KK – I intended visiting a geocache half a mile away in the opposite direction to the route, before proceeding on the standard C2C route towards Richmond but with an additional climb on to the top of Whitcliffe Scar to visit Willance Leap. Did they want to stay with me and walk the additional mileage? or press ahead on the fairly easy to follow route past the Applegarth Farms through Whitcliffe wood into Richmond. Team decision they would go ahead alone.
I went to bag the Water Wheel View geocache and then as I passed Ted he was still trying to sort his accommodation in the Osmotherly area. He couldn’t get in at the YH so it looked like he would just have to get there and find a camp site. I waved him goodbye and didn’t see him again on the walk. I continued along the route and ascended the scar to walk along the tops towards Willance Leap. I bagged another geocache on route and took a few photographs at Willance Leap then pressed on to Richmond. As I descended into Richmond I contacted Linda to say I would meet them on the Hurgill Lane car park at 12.30pm.
I had hoped to introduce Linda and Jacqui to the KK and any other C2C walkers I had met on the route but where had the KK gone? We didn’t see them all afternoon and they were staying at the Old Brewery Guest House.. It was great to see Linda and give her a cuddle and kiss. She had kindly brought me some dry clothing so I changed in the nearby toilets. Linda and Jacqui were having a good time on holiday and we chatted, yes you’ve guessed it, over a beer in the Castle Tavern – well I had beer, Jacqui had cider and Linda had a coffee. The weather changed a little during the afternoon blowing in a cold wind and the occasional light but very brief shower. We had a look around Richmond including the Castle Walk – a scenic walk around the castle walls overlooking the River Swale. All three of us also bagged a very small geocache in the centre of Richmond – Jacqui was a little giddy at finding it so geocaching .com may have another member. We saw Gordon and Charlotte in the market square and I introduced them to Linda and Jacqui. We had a brief chat before going our separate ways. Linda and Jacqui had a bit of retail therapy before we had a coffee in the square. It was time for them to head back to Grassington some 40 miles away and for me to book in at Willance House – the oldest house in Richmond and linked to Robert Willance of Willance Leap fame. We said our farewells on the car park at 4.40pm and for the first time on the walk I felt a little low.
I knew how to find Willance House as Linda and I had been to Richmond before. I pressed the bell expecting to be greeted by Mrs Jackson with whom I had booked and corresponded about my stay. I was greeted by the new owner of some 2 weeks Sandra and then introduced to her husband Colin. What a wonderful welcome from a kind smiling face – it cheered me up again. I was served with tea and biscuits and sat chatting with them for about 45 minutes. They were keen to make a success of their new business venture having moved from Southern England. One thing for sure they had a wonderful house and I was impressed by their all round attitude which was we want to listen to what you walkers want and we will ensure all our guests have a wonderful stay. I was able to pass on my own personal views but they had already made a great start. I had a shower and carried out my daily routine ready for tomorrow. I had the options to bag quite a few geocaches tomorrow – which ones shall I visit. Whilst researching this subject in advance of the walk I noticed that there are dozens of geocaches around Richmond and therefore for any geocachers interested – Richmond is the place for a few days geocaching.
I had a walk into Richmond Market Square at about
6.30pm to identify a suitable place for my evening meal. What did I fancy? I
settled on the Kings Head Hotel – a little more expensive than others in the
town but I thoroughly enjoyed my meal of a chicken Caesar salad. The Kings
Head was a smart hotel and I noticed a prominent sign on the bar asking
guests to refrain from smoking – I was therefore surprised and slightly
annoyed to see two customers openly smoking in front of the bar staff who
did nothing to deter/prevent it. I will not return to this hotel but the
food was excellent. I wandered around town after my meal for half an hour
looking in various eating houses and couldn’t see any others C2C walkers so
I returned to Willance House at about 8.30pm. On my arrival I settled my
bill in advance with Sandra and she took orders for breakfast and my packed
lunch. Sandra kindly donated £5 to my charity – Macmillan Cancer Relief. I
had a great nights sleep.
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