Archive for May, 2017

Forthcoming June Crossing……………..

Monday, May 29th, 2017

Hi,
I am a member of the Emley Drama Group, an amateur drama group that also has a ‘walking group’ as an offshoot. This group did the coast to coast last year, the West Highland Way this year and is now doing the Cleveland way. We are also attempting to do the Lyke Wake Walk in June. We are doing this in honor of one of our long-standing drama member and we would like to tell you a short version of his story.

Back in 1976 (we think but don’t know for sure) a group of council solicitors decided to do the Lyke Wake Walk and succeeded. One of the group was a young man called Mr. John Emms who eventually became head solicitor for Kirklees. We know him as Henry a kindhearted, lovable gentleman who is talented amateur actor with more hobbies than you can name, including being a published author of short stories and plays.   When John was 13 he was diagnosed with Diabetes and has been on Insulin ever since. Despite looking after his health he is now struggling to remain mobile due to diabetic neuropathy.  This has meant that he is no longer an actor or able to be such an active member of the drama group,

We have decided to do this walk and fundraise for the Diabetic Society, but we have a favor to ask. John never registered with the Lyke Wake Walk society as he didn’t know how to, so he has never had a certificate or a badge or any other of your wonderful souvenirs. I am sure it would cheer him up and make him very proud if we could acquire these for him on his behalf and be able to present them to him after we have completed the walk. We have no proof that he did the walk other than his word, but he is a solicitor!

The walking group consists of Amanda Gill, our map reader and general fast walker driven by her need for yet another cup of tea, Kate Whitwam my daughter, who doesn’t know the meaning of the word ‘can’t’, Jane Fellows who along with her Jack Russell dog, will be our support team, Jane has decided to sit this one out due to being 68 and  have 2 artificial hips, and finally myself who is usually at the rear making sure no one gets lost, well that’s what I tell them.

Why did we decide on this walk? Well, it was my idea, you see, my children and grandchildren have always called me ‘the witch’ due to my uncanny ability to predict the weather and having eyes in the back of my head and I felt that it was about time I made the title ‘official’. To get the others to agree to do this walk I had to promise I would do the Pennine Way next year, a walk that has never appealed to me but is an absolute must to Amanda. Do I think we can do it? To be honest I am not sure but we intend to give it a jolly good go, we aren’t Tough old Yorkshire lasses for nowt!

Looking forward to hearing from you

Yours in good faith

Karen Kirkup

Prospective Dirgers – Steve Davies, Dave Crossman, Mark Middleton Commiserations – Andrew Carter

Monday, May 29th, 2017

Having all turned 40 this year, we decided to commemorate this milestone by completing the LWW unsupported (a mile for every year)
 
We arrived at Osmotherley at 4:30am, probably a little optimistically anticipating our crossing to take between 14 and 16 hours, posed for photos in the T-Shirts Andrew had printed especially for the occasion, and set of in high spirits.  The first 10 miles were eaten up in decent time.  The warm weather certainly helping us along.  However, on the climb up from the B1257, Andrew was struck down with crippling cramp.  Following helpful advice from fellow walkers passing us, we soldiered on. This was to no avail as the cramp continued to hamper his progress.  To the despair of all of us, he decided to drop out once we reached The Lion.
 
The very welcome sight of The Lion eventually appeared after 7 ½ hours, and the prospect of some lager flavoured refreshment hastened our pace.  Just in the nick of time as the thunderstorm which had been forecast, and we had seen approaching from the south for some time, broke and gave us a refreshing soaking just as we reached the pub.  Following lunch and making sure our friend was well set up in the beer garden, with the FA cup final on his phone, we bid him farewell and set of on part 2.
 
The walk down to the Fryup turn off went quickly and lulled us into a false sense of optimism about what was to come.  We had all read about the boggy bit, but had all underestimated how challenging it would be.  Thankfully the recent warm weather had dried out most of it, so we pressed on, albeit at a much slower pace than previously.
 
As the miles piled up, so did our fatigue.  Each stop becoming harder and harder to get up from.  We were forced to revise our very optimistic finish time of 8pm to ‘a little later’.  However, our determination to complete the walk (now mainly for our departed colleague) and adrenaline kicked in and we pressed on.  Despite losing the path for a mile or so near Filingdales, we were navigating well.
 
The silhouette of Lilla Cross on the horizon gave us a target to aim for and we bounced over the heather towards it, hopeful that the radio mast at Ravenscar and our destination would be visible soon.  It was, although by this time the light was beginning to fade.  The final drag down to the Scarborough to Whitby road was punishing.  The chat and banter drying up as the head torches came out and we struggled to navigate in the dark.  Jugger Howe was a surreal experience in the dark with the illumination from our torches reflecting the light drizzle which had begun to fall.  However once we ascended the other side and crossed the road we knew our goal was in sight.
 
Knowing the finish was in striking distance, we switched off the pain in our feet and summoned up every last bit of energy we had and began the last march up Stony Marl Moor.  As the radio mast appeared out the darkness we knew we had done it, all touching the finish stone simultaneously at 11:39pm, a total crossing time of 19 hours and 9 minutes.
 
Each of us decided ‘Never again’, although on reflection this morning… who knows?
 
Can we have a badge now
 
Steve

Date of passing: Friday 12th May / Saturday 13th May 2017

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

The Magnificent 7: Lee Poskett, Chris Walsh, Martin Haycock, John Osoba , Steve Broadbent, Andy Barker and Ted Fawthrop
Not forgetting the two fabulous support crew: David Poskett and Lisa Barker
After a full breakfast and Mel’s café in Bradford we set off at 10.am driving to Osmotherley. We reached the car park at around 12.20pm but we had already decided as a group we were setting off on the walk at 12.45pm.
So after a few last minute nervous toilet calls, rucksack checks and the traditional photos at the Lyke Wake Walk stone monument we set off… up the first hill and down into the woods all in good spirits and having lots of laughs taking gorgeous photos… on and on we went and then we came to the hills, up the first one no problem, down the other side no immediate problems just a few twinges on the knees for some of our group. Onwards and upwards to the next hill, some of the group were clearly struggling with injuries.
At this point the fell runner that ran past us was lucky he didn’t get thrown off the hill..
We knew we had another hill to get up and over but two of the party were struggling with injuries so we decided that we needed to get them to the first check point ASAP. At This point Lee was a bit in front with her head phones in singing Bon Jovi at the top of her voice. Looking up at one point there was a man stood in front of her smiling at her singing, little did she know that when he passed the rest of her party he was actually pointing to his temple with his finger turning, clearly expressing she was a bit loopy!
Battling on the magnificent 7 made it to the first check point where the support crew had set up a little picnic area with sandwiches, tea and coffee, boiled eggs and plenty of Volterol gel.
At this first support stop the magnificent 7 unfortunately became the fab four. Just too many injuries for them to carry on. So the second stage started with 5 of them waving the 4 of us off. Lee, Chris, John and Martin.
So the four of us set off still all in good spirits and looking forward to the next stage of the walk. Still laughing and joking with plenty of adrenalin flowing throw our bodies. On and on we went knowing that at some point we were going to hit the “boggy bit” up on the moors.
This is where we invented a new hobby which is called SNOG BORKELING..
Walking through the boggy bit when our legs were a bit tired was not the easiest of tasks as Martin came to find out at his expense and our side splitting laughing. Taking steady steps through boggy marsh Martin took a step and came nearly up to his waste in bog and decided the only way he could get out was to dive back, this is where he face planted the bog with arms splayed outwards. He looked up and was covered head to foot in slime. This is not a time when your mates are supposed to crack up laughing but ashamedly that’s what we all did, still having a giggle now writing this!! This is where snog borkeling got its name! Martin snogged the bog.. Although it’s pretty fair to say we were glad it was Martin and not John. John is only four foot nowt, we’d never have seen him again!!
Demoralizingly for Martin we still had 3 miles to go to the next support stop but he saw the funny side and soldiered on.
Eventually we hit a road again this was around 8.45pm. We were due to meet the support group at the Lion pub at around 10pm. But walking down this road we were getting a bit worried about our navigation skills and was looking in the distance at what we thought was the pub on the hill on the other side of us! Yep we had got our barring’s wrong and gone of kilter a bit. Stopping at a point along the road we were deciding what to do as we had no signals on our phones and it was getting late and dark. Just then we looked up and saw a mini bus driving towards us, never have we been so happy to see that in our lives, waving like lunatics at the oncoming minibus it slowed down and to our relief it was our support team. Had either the support team or us been 5 mins earlier we would have missed each other. Let’s not think of what might have happened..
When we arranged to do this walk we decided to do it in two stages (still within 24 hours) but with a break in between, so while the fab four were walking the second leg the others had set up camp at a local camp site called Low BELL END farm, ( you couldn’t make it up)
Getting back to the camp site, there were a few beers and the biggest pan of pasta and meat balls on the go… a very welcoming site. Then it was into the sleeping bags for a few hours kip, yeah right, that wasn’t happening. So after zilch hours sleep the alarms went off at 2.30am. Bacon butties were made, water sacks refilled. Rucksacks replenished with bananas, jelly babies and flap jacks, the fab four set off on the last 20 miles of the walk..
Getting dropped at the same point we got picked up it was 4.25am dark and the boggy moors loomed once more. We were still full of adrenalin but I can’t say we were still having the laughs anymore. Walking through the boggy moors in the dark is not a pleasant feeling and we were glad when the sun stared to come up. Onwards once more, last 16 miles ahead..
One site that did make us smile was seeing Whitby Abbey looming in the distance, thinking that we were nearly there really cheered us up.. follow that Abbey, we shouted skipping down the road like Dorothy, the lion, the scarecrow and the tin man… only as the Abbey came more into focus we realised we had been hallucinating and the Abbey was in fact Fylingdales!!! We had to see the funny side or we would have cried… once again onwards and upwards. Eventually getting to the last support stop to be greeted for the last time with cups of coffee, sandwiches, and Jaffa cakes. Plus the biggest tree that has now become known to our group as the poop tree, it seems the world and his wife must have used this tree as a squatting spot over the years…
Setting off now on the last leg, the last 10 miles. Hurray, next time we see our friends our challenge will be over!!
After hallucinating a few more times.., we had sheep playing cricket, we had walking marker stones, we had cows sounding like sheep but we knew we were getting there, or so we thought
Following the gaming ( Garmin) navigation system we were pleased to see that the end of the third leg was in sight and was getting closer, it was pinging each kilometre, we counted them up and we had only 10 pings to go and the end was there. We cheered each other on and downed our last energy gels.. … 10… 9…. 8…. 7…. 6…. 5… 4… 3… 2… 1… we made it!!!!!!
NOOOOO the bloody gaming (Garmin) was not set right and we still had 3 miles to go.. we looked over the edge of the ridge and saw the downhill and the uphill, I think we could have all cried at that point… ok let’s keeps going we’ve come this far…
so we get the mast and our final destination in sight which at that point looked very small and a long way off but at least we could see the end… keep going keep pushing we are nearly there.. That mast was never getting bigger and in our mind boggled state it was getting smaller…. We were talking gibberish and we now know more about each other than we ever thought possible.. Warts and all….
Finally the mast started getting bigger we could see our friends waving to us, the emotions were running high… and we finally kissed that stone at 11.45am… 23 hours after first setting off ( with a 7 hour stop off at the camp site)

Beers were waiting, cameras at the ready.. then the tears came… strong friendships and bonds have been made for life…it’s something we will never forget and through the blood sweat and tears we enjoyed every mile and a big £3000 raised for candle lighters children’s cancer charity..

And the Last note is… we have to do it all again now for the three injured ones who want to complete it… are we mad?? YES mad as hatters..haha…

Crossing, 12th May 2017

Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

We would like to report a successful crossing (west to east) on the 12th May by dirgers PTM, MAA and RWJW.
The three of us met at school and have been friends for 28 years. Recently, we have begun to test our friendship by completing long walking challenges together. The LWW seemed like another opportunity to spend a day interrogating one another on their careers, political views and personalities.
PTM – farmer, lefty, remoaner, charming MAA – accountant, middle,
remoaner , whinger RWJW – estate agent, far right, brexiter, confident
We decided to start at 6:30am<x-apple-data-detectors://1> at Sheep Wash as this was key to arriving at the Lion pub in time for lunch, remarkably however, and with MAA and RWJW having had only one hours Brexit argument, we arrived for elevenses. Black Sheeps gulped, sandwiches eaten and with spirits high, particularly in group ‘lightweight’PTM, we set off on the next leg.
Despite the Eastern area OS map of the North York Moors, (the only map we had) not covering the first couple of miles, we did find our way to the first of the bog sections. The lack of rain over the past month, an issue close to farmer PTM’s heart, had created a bouncy sponge like walking surface excellent for upping the walking pace. However, this was negated by the Black Sheep mini hangover (PTM) and fear of adder bites (RWJW & MAA). Having reached the Blue Man with the seemingly never ending Wheeldale Plantation on our left, sprits had dropped (see spirit chart). Continually marching through “Adder Country” with wettish feet and no sign of Fylingdales was taking its toll on the group dynamic. MAA had run out of water and, after sourcing some from a local resident told PTM (also low on water) that “You’re not having any of mine!”
Having regrouped and agreeing to share water we carried on, only for RWJW’s biggest fear to be realised. There really were adders in Adder Country and RWJW just narrowly avoided stepping on one. PTM, the Yorkshire Steve Irwin, soon calmed the jumping screaming RWJW and assured him the adders would soon be going to bed. As a result of this “near death experience”, RWJW was more than happy for PTM to resume his position as point man.
With Fylingdales now in full view and approaching quickly we were confident for the first time that we may actually complete the walk. Disappointingly, but as a result of our new found speed we crossed the railway line 10 minutes ahead of the steam train and missed the opportunity for a steamy selfie. PTM and RWJW could sense this irritated anorak and accountant MAA. He’d once gone for a job at Transport for London because he “loved trains”, sadly for MAA he failed the interview.
By now the strongest group member, PTM,was consistently ten meters ahead of rest of the chasing pack. Although, he had to take some stick from the rest of dirgers, they knew deep down, without his pace setting, the groups MPH reduced rapidly. In order to improve spirits, PTM put his iPod on loudspeaker and we were soon dancing and marching along to classic hits from ABBA<x-apple-data-detectors://2>, Tina Turner<x-apple-data-detectors://3> and Steps.

As Fylingdales became a dot on the horizon us, the phone mast above Ravenscar became our next target. Swelled with enthusiasm and with YMCA blaring out across the Moors, we missed the official end point of the LWW and instead piled into a field of sheep. As the flock approached, RWJW made a bee line for the safety of farmer PTM leaving lone wolf MAA to fend off one particularly inquisitive ewe. Much to the amusement of PTM and RWJW, the City Boy MAA with stiff legs and sore feet awkwardly lurched around the field dodging her advances. Having hurdled the fence, the City Boy was delighted to be back on Tarmac with the hotel and end point in sight.
Having checked in (exactly 14hours after setting off) and without showering, we were able to find plenty of space to eat and drink at the hotel bar until the early hours.
MAA, RWJW and PTM would like to wish anybody attempting the LWW a safe crossing.

Crossing Saturday 27th July 2013 Nick Coombes & Chris Wood

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

What follows is the Lyke Wake Report of Chris Wood and Nick Coombes, of West Ayton and East Ayton respectively, following their maiden crossing of Saturday 27th July 2013…

Now here’s a tale I’d like to tell,
Like many heard before
It tells of how two youngsters
Set off to conquer the moor.

Two pals they were from Ayton village
One’s East, and one’s from West,
They came not to set records,
But to put themselves to the test.

Handsome and bold, fearless and brave
These young men were – ‘tis true,
And the years they held between ‘em
Only totalled a hundred and two.

They drove off from their village
In the middle of a moonlit night
The stars shone brightly to guide their way
It was a magnificent sight.

They parked by Cod Beck reservoir
And filled up on sarnies and tea
They planned to start at 4 o’clock sharp
But first they both needed a pee.

That done, they started up the slope,
as Brian’s book says you should.
The skies were clear and dawn was breaking
As they journeyed along Scarth Wood.

They passed on through and climbed the steps
With nary a thought of stopping
And as the sun rose on Drake Howe Hill
They spotted Roseberry Topping.

At checkpoint 2 they stopped to put on
Suncream and drink water.
Then undeterred and without a word
They went on like lambs to the slaughter.

They lengthened their stride cross Urra Moor
The pace got slightly faster.
Bloworth Crossing came and went,
Thoughts turned to beer and pasta.

At the Lion Inn they met their team
Just seven hours had passed.
The supporters gave out sandwiches
Which they gobbled down real fast.

Refreshed, they stood and thanked their team,
Clean socks on their smelly feet.
Then on they pressed to the old Ralph Cross –
Ahead lay the path of peat.

The summer heat had helped them;
T’was mostly dry and spongey.
But here and there still lurked some spots
Of bog, which were quite gungey.

And so of course it came to pass,
As the Gods of the moors may please,
That Chris fell into a deepish hole
And sank right up to his knees.

His partner Nick ran to lend a hand
But Chris climbed out unaided.
He seemed to have gained a pair of socks –
Dark brown and fairly jaded.

As they continued across the peat
They suffered the briefest of showers,
But little did they know what lay in store
In the following couple of hours.

Onward now the heroes pressed
Past checkpoint 4 they strode
Their target was now Eller Beck
But their pace had slightly slowed.

And as they passed the Man i’ th’ Moss
Their cheerfulness was banished
As, despite the line of dots on the map,
The path had completely vanished!

From north to south across the moor
By heather they were confronted
Some of it old, some of it tall,
And some of it quite stunted.

No trace of a passage could they espy –
The heather had covered it all.
No choice remained but to stagger on through
Trip, stumble, slip and fall.

They gained a lot of knowledge there
About Yorkshire’s moorland heather:
That it scratches your legs to hell and back
And seems to go on forever.

But with never-ending fortitude
They finally prevailed,
Their courage never faltered;
Their spirit never failed.

And as they neared checkpoint 5
Where more sustenance awaited,
A beautiful adder crossed their path
Which left them both elated.

Now at this point it’s fair to say,
The two were feeling shattered.
A cup of tea and a slice of cake
Were all that really mattered.

And there she was, the maiden fair,
Standing by the beck
Across the moor came Nick and Chris
And they were neck and neck.

Nick’s wife and son were there again
Five hours since the pub.
They fed the walkers and saw them off
Refreshed by tea and grub.

The day of toiling in the sun
Had left our heroes dirty,
The homeward push was on them now,
The clock stood at 5.30.

They trudged on up to Lilla Cross
In view of the “big cheese grater.”
They knew that they would finish now
The question was “sooner – or later?”

They wondered how other travellers
Could do it in rain or snow.
Because, despite the good weather,
The legs were beginning to go.

But finally, despite the pain
The Beacon hove into view,
They crawled along those final miles
And reached it at 8.32.

Still not content with the victory
They pressed on to the Raven Hall bar.
It took thirty minutes for that last mile –
The hardest one by far!

Exhausted, grimy, weary and worn,
They sat and supped their beer,
And said to each other, with a strange sort of grin
“Shall we do it again – next year?”

Crossing Report Saturday the 6th May 2017

Wednesday, May 10th, 2017

I am pleased to report the successful crossing of the Lyke Wake Walk on Saturday the 6th May 2017. Albeit with two men down. Will, Pete, Matty and I set off from the Youth Hostel at 5.50 Am, twenty minutes behind schedule. However, this was good going after two much red wine in the Golden Lion the night before.
>
> We set off with spirits high and the sun was shining. In all fairness our spirits were a bit too high, as we spent too much time chin wagging instead of pressing on at a good pace. Nevertheless, this guaranteed that our support crew (Nics, Hels Kiera and Olive the dog) were ready and waiting with sausage sandwiches and tea at checkpoint two.
>
> Heading off from checkpoint two we initially went in the wrong direction. Luckily enough we realised quickly without adding too much more in distance. By the time we reached checkpoint three after the Lion Pub the sun had gone in and the reality had set in how much further we had to go. We then headed over the bog (which was definitely boggy) and arrived at checkpoint four to find out support crew had not yet arrived. A quick phone call confirmed they had got side tracked in an art studio! Subsequently, we pushed on over the next stretch. This is where it began to take its toll. Wills ankle appeared sprained after some spectacular bog jumping and Petes joints seized up. The average pace dropped down from a steady 3 mph to a slow 1 mph. Luckily enough the support crew broke off from the art viewing and found a road to meet us at about 30 miles in. Pete (tin man) was done and could not go on but Will wanted to press on. He did not want to drop out as he had previously taken the micky out of Matty from dropping out of another challenge and was worried he will be in for the same treatment! However, after much persuasion and the realisation that it would take us about 24 hours at his pace he honourable admitted defeat (Matty waited until the next day to give him some stick back).
>
> Matty and I continued the concluding stages alone. As the night drew in, the blisters and aches became painful and our morale took a blow. It was just a case of that we needed to get through it. Luckily enough Matty was still going strong and managed to pull me along with him. Those latter stages in the dark felt like they were never going to end because we could not see where we were heading.
>
> At 10.20 Pm we were triumphant and concluded the walk in the thick mist. Our support crew were there with our two fallen comrades flashing their headlamps to welcome us to the finish. We were all too tired to finish with a celebratory pint so just headed off to bed. However, we enjoyed a great breakfast together the following morning.
>
> Thanks to our great support crew – as we could not have done it without them.
>
> A word of advice would be, don’t underestimate this challenge. we tried to do some practice walks together but due to other commitments we never got around to it. The big joke was Will said I don’t need to practice walking as I have been doing it since I was one years old! He admitted afterwards that practice walks were needed. We are all thirty something physically able men and apart from one the rest suffered with severe aches and pains.
>
> I would also highly recommend purchasing the sketch map. It was much easier to use than an OS map.
>
> Will Bb (Harrogate), Will B (Harrogate), Peter B AKA tin man (Selby) and Matty R (Sheffield).