Friday, 30 September 2011

Cumbria Way

Monday 22 August: Carlisle to Skiddaw (27 miles). Cloudy with sunny spells. Glad to escape Carlisle I make it to Caldbeck as the Odfellows Arms ends lunch service but the shop sells snacks. When I had my walking boots resoled thirty-years ago at the clog makers here the cobbler assured me the new soles would outlast the boots. They did, I left these worn out boots in Caithness in July. Good job. It's a great climb across Caldbeck Fells to the slopes of Skiddaw and the wonderfully welcoming and remote hostel in Skiddaw House, a former hunting lodge run by a former Yorkshire coal-miner and his spouse.
Tuesday 23: Skiddaw to Borrowdale (15 miles). Dull and cloudy. A steep descent into Keswick for lunch then south along Borrowdale for two nights at the smart wine-bar style YHA hostel at Longthwaite and an open-top double-decker bus (87th mode of transport) into Keswick for a day.
Thursday 25: Borrowdale to Hawkeshead (19 miles). Sunny and cloudy. This is a great day. A long haul up beautiful Langstrath and a tough ascent to Stake Pass leads down to the fairy-tale landscape of Great Langdale and one of my old-time haunts, the Hiker's bar of The Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel for lunch, where, in thirty-years, only the prices have changed. I spend the evening in the splendid YHA hostel at Hawkshead.
Friday 26: Hawkeshead to Bowness-on-Windermere (6 miles). Sunny morning and a short stroll takes me to Bowness and the start of the Dales Way.
Photos along the Cumbria Way. I've now walked 554 miles.

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