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Mon 16th May 2016

Blog - Kirk Yetholm and Wideopen Hill Nordic Walk

Blog - Kirk Yetholm and Wideopen Hill Nordic Walk

A long journey to the start of the walk at Kirk Yetholm for most of the Nordic Nuts.

As well as some regular Nuts we had a few who had only been on a couple of walks and a total newbie, welcome to the Nordic Nuts Louise.

Welcomes made and a round of introductions as requested by Carol.
Martin led the way at quite a pace whilst everyone else followed and whichever pace they were comfortable with.

First up was a bit of road (not our favourite surface) before we headed upwards towards Wideopen Hill. Lots of chatter, as always and Russell and Steve (the unofficial photographers) were snapping away.  You have to be on your toes as you don't know what photographs they are taking.

We got to the bottom of the hill we were about to climb, this was the point of the walk that "Elbows" was to decide if he could carry on as he was carrying an injury - of course he did. Catherine, Carol and Marilyn asked if the top of the hill we could see was our destination.  I had to disappoint them and said "no, you can't see the point we are going to".

Kirsten, Paul, Martin, Angela, Martyn and Chris started off at a good pace, meanwhile the rest of us made our way up at our own pace.  I dropped to the back to encourage those who weren't able to go as fast, stopping "to admire the view" when they needed to.

The weather on the day was fantastic, bright sunshine and a very slight breeze.  It is the first time I have been to the top of Wideopen Hill and there not be a strong wind.

We made it to the top of Wideopen Hill, the highest point of St Cuthbert's Way with no problems, although some of the stiles were challenging for our shorter Nuts!

At the top lots of photographs were taken to document the achievement of everyone and a well earned break for lunch, cue some light hearteded leg pulling by Russell with Marilyn who had brought a knife and fork.  I told the group about the walks coming up and there was lots of interest in the Windy Gyle walk in June.

We headed back down the hill, no stopping this time although I am not sure how the nordic walking technique was when we were coming downhill as it is quite a skill.  We got to the road again and then along the path beside the river walking past a couple of cows and their calves they kept their eye on us as we passed them.

We got back to Kirk Yetholm and the cars, when I checked my GPS watch it showed only 8.09 miles.  Angela "Mrs Elbows" wasn't happy so she walked around the green in Kirk Yetholm until she got to 9 miles (as advertised), we all stretched and cooled down whilst she finished her 9 miles and then we all headed into the Border Hotel for some light refreshments in the garden.

I hope you all had a great day, I really enjoyed it.  I look forward to seeing you all again very soon.

Thank you to Martin, Laura and Ruth for their help as the Nordic Nuts volunteers.

Julie x

Fri 6th May 2016

Coastal Challenge 2016

Coastal Challenge 2016

On Monday May 2nd just under 300 walkers took place in the Northumberland Coastal Challenge walk.

After registering in Alnmouth they got transferred to North of Bamburgh to Budle Bay to start their 26 mile walk back to Alnmouth.

It was a day of sunshine and showers.

Please enjoy the YouTube film and pictures.

Sun 1st May 2016

Windy Gyle - in the snow

Windy Gyle - in the snow

After all the weather we have had in the last week we arrived into the car park on the morning of the walk in near perfect conditions.

It looked like there was snow on the tops which would certainly make for a great days walking.
After quick introductions a well-equipped group of walkers set off up the road before joining ‘The Street’ as we climbed steeply to get our first fine view of the day, looking back on the Coquet Valley.

As we crossed Hindside Knowe it quickly came clear that the snow had drifted in places but we made our way through making good progress.

After a quick coffee break we made our way onwards and upwards over Black Braes and as the snow became deeper we decided to stop for lunch at the point we joined the Pennine Way. As we stopped for lunch we could see two walkers in the distance and over our lunch stop we could asses there progress as they also scaled the mighty Windy Gyle.

After lunch progress was fairly slow over Windy Rigg as the snow became deeper but the group managed well and as the sun came out for our final ascent up to Windy Gyle we all summited with smiles on our faces. At the summit the temperature quickly dropped and we went from T-shirts to full winter clothing in a matter of minutes.

After the group summit pictures we passed back across the fence and followed the path along the border. During this section of the walk we were treated to 4 seasons in an hour but after a hard hour of walking we eventually arrived at Clennel Street.

As we descended to snow became a little slushy in places but this actually made it harder to walk through and a few members members of the group ended up on their backsides.
We then just had three small climbs and a rise before the famous Barrowburn Tea Room as we climbed The Middle and Middle Hill (two climbs in Middle Hill) before dropped down to the small burn before the final rise.

Tea and cakes where well received in the Barrowburn tea room.

It was a great group who all managed the conditions very well, it will certainly be a walk to look back on with fond memories.