Tuesday, May 8, 2012

86.2 kms: Stake Hill-Gravel Hole-Newhey-Littleborough-Cowberry Hill

When I said I was going to do fewer kilometres, I didn't realise I was going to become a room-loving slacker. But, and you know I have to make excuses, some of my old friends are back—mud, boggy pathways, hills, horseflies, and, don't forget, stiles. Not to mention, of course, the inevitable faffing that comes with trying to work out where the path is in the first place. Given all that, and one more thing, a bag full of wet clothing (thought the heater would stay on all night last night so I washed up big!), fourteen kilometres is actually not too bad. I also got to this point in the climb up the Blackstone Edge (the rather nasty hill that takes me to my starting point on the Pennine Way, The White House (it is the pub under the arrow for 'tomorrow' on the picture, very little on that picture, there is one there I promise, and it is white)) and decided that a sensible climber wouldn't go up on the moor at nearly four in the afternoon when it was still some distance to not-known-if-available accommodation, especially when that sensible climber was unwilling to spend the night under canvas. Mmm, sensible excuse-maker, sounds like to me.  

Am I gettting old? Be honest with me. I am having a little trouble convincing myself that this isn't madness with a backpack on. Remind me again that it takes about a week of doing this before it starts to become more fun and less 'what was I doing this for again?' The good thing about tomorrow is that I will get to see like-minded madmen (and their dogs) in the midday sun. My little Lollii apparently has a limp. Too much frisbee perhaps. But John, the farmer at Three Gates was telling me this morning that his bull also has a limp. And he was off to try and get his bull to let him have a look at it. B——, I think that would be a bit harder than even your task was. He also filled me with the reassuring information that it is lucky I didn't bring Lollii with me because people have been killed by cows who thought the dogs were after their calves and have mown over owners on the way to 'get' the dog. Just when I was getting confident about being in the same field as cows!

Not much happened today so I am going to leave you with a couple of the places I saw on the map. The names in this sentence are real, no animals were hurt in the production of this sentence, and it is brought to you by Canal Films and the British Broadcasting Corporation: Dick Slack (no, really, look on the map if you don't believe me), Turton Bottoms, Deeply Vale, Fold-Head, Southward Bottom (that is what I have, being old and all), Cock Leach (ow, even though it is a different spelling; that's probably a place where randy Englishmen went for a 'cure' in the eighteenth century), and one of my favourites, because who doesn't like a mix of Bond and countryside—Roger Moor.

Black Volvos: 2. Hot Pink Fiats: 1.

Good night to Cowberry Hill, good night to you.



  1. You are doing well, don't be too hard on yourself.

  2. Everything is hard when you first get started. You'll be experienced in no time and then it will feel better. Think about how amazing your walk is. Think of the iceberger nut cases in the mornings. They are old a bit crazy, but still achieving. Well done for being a little crazy but not too crazy!