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Journeyman's Coast to Coast Journal 2006
Saturday 24 June - Ingleby Arncliffe to Great Broughton
Why is it that I don’t have long night sleeps but still wake up feeling totally refreshed and ready for another days walking. It was 6am and breakfast was not until 8am so I made a cup of tea and cross checked my gear. It was a more strenuous day today and my destination was Great Broughton. There were several hills to negotiate and a potential 4 geocaches. Quite a few people staying in Great Broughton arrange a lift from their hosts at Clay Bank Top but this was not for me. I had decided to cut down to Great Broughton through Broughton Plantation by turning left just before the Wain Stones. I would then retrace my steps the following morning by walking back up to the Wain Stones and then descending to Clay Bank Top and beyond. It made both days a little longer but easily achievable. I heard Mrs Backhouse come in to my half of the house at about 7.35am to arrange breakfast and when I went down just before 8am everything was laid out on the table for me. It was a sheer delight to be staying here with a wonderful host. I negotiated my full English breakfast which was excellent and settled my bill with Mrs Backhouse. No packed lunch today as I intended taking lunch at the famous Lord Stones cafe at the bottom of Carlton Bank. I chatted with Mrs Backhouse for a while and set off from Monks House at 8.50am.
I made swift progress, on yet another ideal walking day, up the road past Arncliffe Hall and through Arncliffe Wood. I couldn’t see anyone coming up the tracks behind me so I assumed that Bill and Marie had set off early as they had a long walk today to the Feversham Arms at Church Houses in Farndale they could not get in at the Lion Inn at Blakey Ridge. I anticipated meeting some if not all of the Osmotherly crew at some point on the route and I had made a provisional arrangement to meet the KK at the Lord Stones cafe. As I reached the top of Arncliffe Wood I bagged one of my four caches for the day and as I looked ahead across the distinct path leading across Scarth Wood Moor I saw Ian and Val about quarter of a mile away and also Bill and Marie a few hundred yards in front of them.
There were no signs of the ‘Cider drinkers’ or the KK. As I left the wood via a gate I saw a group of four young boys walking from my right. I guessed they were on a Duke of Edinburgh scheme and I was right. They were carrying quite hefty packs and I asked if they were ok. They shouted to me to wait a minute and wanted to check their position on the map as they had to make a checkpoint further along their route. The map they had was folded at the point they were at and once I confirmed their position and turned the map over for them they found there destination with ease and set off following me with obvious signs of relief. It was great to see a group of youngsters out on the moor learning all sorts of skills together. It brought back fond memories of my earlier days at school and as a Police Cadet.
I was gaining ground on Ian and Val and as crossed the road at Swarth Gap I saw a group of 6 young boys also on a Duke of Edinburgh scheme. They were obviously part of the same exercise as they had just made the same checkpoint that the other group of 4 were approaching. As we reached a viewpoint in Clain Wood I took a photograph of this group of 6 youngsters at their request with a disposable Kodak camera. Again it was a pleasure to see such a group working together and enjoying the countryside. I caught up with Ian and Val and walked with them for the next couple of miles, bagging the Riser cache in between. They told me of their anger at a group of youths causing a disturbance and annoying on the camp site the night before. The site itself had been fine but unfortunately a mindless minority had spoiled it for Ian and Val and other campers. The hills were taking their toll on Ian and Val who had full packs but they made steady progress on this demanding section. They were hoping to reach the Lion Inn at Blakey Ridge today to set up camp. I forged ahead on the climb over Live Moor and caught up with Bill and Marie as we descended Carlton Bank to the Lord Stones cafe arriving at 12 noon. Ian and Val were not far behind us and we ordered our lunch and sat down at a table outside in glorious sunshine. Ian and Val sat at an adjoining table and ordered their lunch. Ian had the biggest breakfast I have ever seen despite the fact that he had a big breakfast on the campsite in Osmotherly.
Bill and Marie set off and we said our fond farewells. I probably wouldn’t see them again. Would they make it to Robin Hoods Bay? I had no reason to doubt it despite a couple of long days ahead. I waited for the KK until 12.50pm but then decided to press on up towards Cringle Moor. I said goodbye to Ian and Val also not knowing whether I would see them again or whether they would make it to the end. Again I had no reason to doubt that they would not get there. I bagged another geocache on the way up the moor but could not visit the site of another due to the high number of walkers in the area. I stopped at the Alex Falconer Memorial and seat and chatted with a man and his young son and a wise old solo walker just doing a ridge walk today from Lord Stones to Wain Stones and back. Visibility was quite good and I scanned the horizon looking towards the Yorkshire dales and then looking further northwards, to industrial Teesside beyond the unmistakeable Roseberry Topping. The paths along this section of the route have been restored by long stretches of stones to prevent erosion and it was easy walking despite the frequent ascents and descents. I looked back frequently but saw no signs of the KK. On the way down Kirby Bank I spoke to a couple from Doncaster – a town where I had worked in South Yorkshire. We chatted about walking and they seemed interested in finding out about how to book your own long distance walk so I gave them some advice and we set off in our respective opposite directions.
I was making good progress and thoroughly enjoying today’s walk after a couple of days of relatively flat walking. I took several photographs as I first ascended and then descended the various summits along the route and the next one was Cold Moor giving the view ahead of the Wain Stones. My turn off was at the bottom of Cold Moor before the next ascent to the Wain Stones. I was tempted to continue ahead going over the Wain Stones along Hasty Bank and down to Clay Bank Top where I could turn left and walk down the road to Great Broughton. I decided to stick to my original plan mainly due to the fact that I had heard so much about the busy and often dangerous road from Clay Bank Top down into Great Broughton. The path through Broughton plantation was easy to follow but steep in places (I would have to return along this route the following morning) and in no time at all I picked up a track, then minor road and finally the main road leading me into the village of Great Broughton. There were no paths on this last section of the main road and it was busy with traffic – I was pleased I had not continued to Clay Bank Top to walk the full length of it.
I booked in at Newlands House shortly after 3pm and received another wonderful welcome from the owner, Barbara. I had booked a single room but here was another kind lady who offered me the double room with a large bath and separate shower at the same price as it was free. We discussed other guests staying in the area and Barbara was aware that a total of 6 American’s were staying – 4 at Ingle Hill, another reputable B & B nearby, and 2 at Newlands House. I was aware that the KK were staying in Great Broughton and believed they were all staying at Ingle Hill. I went to my room had a cup of tea and then had a bath – it was a massive bath and I had a good soak. I then set about my daily routine of sorting my maps and gear for tomorrow. I washed my walking gear, including my Ron Hill Tracksters which Barbara agreed to spin and hand out to dry. As I was relaxing on the bed at about 4.30pm I heard other guests arriving and I recognised the voices – it was Tressa and Di of the KK. They had been collected by Barbara’s husband Keith from Clay Bank Top and were staying here at Newlands House, whilst their two colleagues were at Ingle Hill as were 2 other American guests who were not C2C related. I had suggested to them earlier in the walk that the Jet Miners was a good place to eat this evening.
At 6pm I walked the very short distance into Great
Broughton village and called in at the
Hotel for a pint of Tetley's bitter. It was fairly
quiet in the pub so I walked up the main street to the Jet Miners. As I
entered I saw the KK sitting at a table – they had saved me a seat and we
chatted about our respective days walk. They had missed me by about 15
minutes at the
cafe having been told by Ian and Val that I waited for
an hour. They seemed to have enjoyed their days walk and like me were
looking forward to the next day. I reflected on the KK and it was obvious to
me they were having a good time and were determined to finish the walk. I
had noticed that they had improved their map reading and navigation in the
days since I first met them i.e. they were paying more attention since their
mishap at the head of Ennerdale. We ordered our evening meals but it was
busy in the Jet Miners as it was Saturday night and partly due to limited
staff it would be quite some time before the meals were served. The food was
excellent when it arrived and I would certainly eat at the Jet Miners again
despite the slow service. We all headed back to our respective accommodation
at 10pm and it wasn’t long before I was fast asleep.
© Copyright Walking Places 2006