Craster/Dunstanburgh Castle Nordic Walk Sunday 18th October 2015
Mon 19th October 2015
Another perfect weather day 12° and light clouds in the sky.
Everyone met nice and early. I left them in my lovely volunteer, Laura’s capable hands whilst I ran through the technique with Andrea, who had never Nordic walked before. She said “I didn’t realise there was so much to know about walking!”
On finishing we did our warm up in the car park before heading towards Craster Harbour. I had mentioned that part of this walk today would take in areas of the Shepherds Walks Coastal Challenge, including where checkpoint 2 would be located. I also said that if the tide was out we would go onto the beach but that this would increase the length of the walk. Of course the sand won.
We were walking along the path and anyone who Nordic walks knows that the clicking noise can be very loud on tarmac. Poor Andrea was very conscious of the noise. The rest of us weren’t bothered. Luckily the tarmac doesn’t last long and we headed onto the grass towards Dunstanburgh Castle (a motte and bailey castle).
The grass to Dunstanburgh Castle is a great path to Nordic walk on, you can really plant your poles. Once we reached the Castle we turned left around the bottom of the motte I explained the technique as we were going downhill. The group were getting very excited because we could see the beach and there was plenty of sand for us to drop down onto. We love Nordic walking on the beach!
There were a lot of golfers on the course but luckily they were putting so there was no danger of us getting a golf ball off our heads.
Dropping onto Embleton Bay beach (first detour) we firstly had to walk across some big stones, Laura’s favourite bit (not). We were rewarded with a fantastic stretch of beach to really sink our poles into. Debbie asked if we could try Nordic skipping and I demonstrated, Ruth had a quick try but the others just laughed at us. We tried to Nordic run but soon stopped.
We reached a point on the beach where we could easily get up to the path we stopped to see if we wanted to stay on the beach or go up onto the path. One of the group asked if we could go up to the path. Off we all headed and we took a small detour (number 2) and were walking through bracken when I looked behind I could only see the top of Debbie and Ruth’s head but Glynis had disappeared, apparently she was standing in a dip. We walked on to the path through Dunstanburgh golf course where layers were removed.
I explained that we were nearly at a lunch stop and pointed out the route. We went past the self catering cottages which are very cute, past the ruins of limekilns built c1790 (which I don’t think anyone saw as they were too busy thinking of lunch) and stopped at the Second World War pill box which is made from sandbags which unusually was filled with concrete and faces inland.
Everyone was wondering how far we had walked so we looked at the ever trusty Ruth who rummaged in her bra for her pedometer and told us it was just over 4½ miles. Suitably refreshed we headed off.
The last part of the walk was along a farm road and across a field of young cows which Andrea and Glynis were very apprehensive of but Laura said in her Northumbrian accent “just stay with me and you’ll be alreet” and then we went onto the road.
We got back to the cars, did our cool down stretches and discussed which tea shop we were going to. Glynis asked if we were going back to the harbour so she could take some photographs.
The weather was beautiful when we got to the Shoreline cafe so we took the opportunity to sit outside, it feels a bit crazy to be able to sit outside in the middle of October. This time our table was full of gluten free dime bar cake, cheese scones, white chocolate and raspberry cake and Rocky Road. We were also very impressed that they had soya milk.
I explained the up and coming walks for 2015 and also the ideas which we have had for 2016. Nordic walking in 2016 looks to be very interesting.
Thank you once again to the lovely Laura for her fantastic support as always and I hope you all enjoyed your day and I hope to see you again soon.