Crossing, Tuesday July 26th 2016

May we please record our Lyke Wake Walk crossing, made on Tuesday July 26th 2016?

‘We’ in this case are Michael Haslam, and Martyn and Toby Whitehead. The former pair are in their 6th decade and increasingly prone to ‘challenges’, the latter is 17 and felt sorry for them!

We set off as the sun rose at 5.15 a.m., and after a minor map reading error, made good progress to Huthwaite Green. Then up the hill to the tops in beautiful rising sunshine, and to the trig point at Carlton Bank. The photo at this point shows all three in great spirits and full of confidence. Descending the path to the road, we found ourselves at Lord Stones café and welcomed the associated facilities.
We continued up onto the top of Cringe Moor, with great views to the sea in the North, and back to where we had walked to the East. Full of energy we elected to climb to the top of the Wainstones, rather than stick to the side of the Broughton Plantation, a decision that we would come to question much later. Still good weather, although perhaps a little windy on top. We made checkpoint 2 by about 8.30 and stopped for a breakfast of slightly squashed croissants and pains au chocolate on the slope up to Carr Ridge.
Fortified, we continued up onto Urra Moor and made good progress on the excellent path past Round Hill to the railway. The first aid kit made an appearance at this stage to repair Toby’s boot which had developed a crocodile like grin.
The railway was easy walking and the weather kind with good views down both sides. But the view south was marred slightly by distant rain clouds. This rain met us as we left the railway to cross the moor to the Rosedale Head road. The path here was vague, but, encouraged by stone piles and a desire to get dry, we strode on. Near the road we first sighted our support vehicles for the first time. What a welcome sight! We made checkpoint 3 by about 12.10.
After lunch and a change of gear at checkpoint 3, we met Fat Betty, and then followed the road until the path across the moor was marked by the road markings and stone. The path was clear, and although we were anxious about this boggy section, it was in fact extremely comfortable to walk on, being spongy and not too wet. The marker stones were generally easy to see, and we enjoyed this section far more than we expected. We met our support vehicle at Hamer, and after a brief stop, continued on.
The path here was not quite so clear, but once on target, we found the Blue man I ‘th’ moss. And followed the rocky path by Wheedale plantation, eventually making the road crossing. For the first time, we were feeling a bit weary, but also still in good form. The path across Simon Howe was steep, but once there, we could see Fylingdales and had a reasonable idea of the distance to checkpoint 5. Turned out it was quite a long way, but we found the railway and crossed up to the Eller Beck car park and our supporters at about 5.00 p.m. Spirits were still high, although fatigue was evident. But only 7 miles to go and we’re still in reasonable shape.
The road here is busy and the bridge tricky, but once across and off the road we made good progress up to Lilla Cross. But conversation was more intermittent now, and all three of us were focussing our energy on moving forwards. But the path East was long and hard and dull! So many stones to step over, and spam much heather. Beautiful in moderation, but across this stage, the path is straight and long and heathery. Did I mention the heather? This stage seemed to go on for ever, and we were actually glad for the change of terrain. The descent into Jugger ravine wasn’t as bad as we expected and the steps out were a welcome change. And so to checkpoint 6, at 8.00pm. By now we were exhausted and must wanted to finish before dark, so we kept going.
The final two miles was more heather, and we were glad and relieved to finish at about 8.40, about 15 ½ hours after we started.
Thanks to the LWW club for developing this challenge and the guidance in the book, which is excellent. I can particularly recommend the talc in socks advice. Thank you.
And mainly thanks to our support team, Michael, Shirley, Melanie, Jessica and Zoe, who had a long day, and provided great sustenance and encouragement.