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Tue 13th May 2014

Nordic Walk - Ingram

Nordic Walk - Ingram

It wasn’t a good start when we got up as it was raining, misty and cool.  A group of hopeful Nordic walkers travelled to Ingram hoping the weather would be better.  It wasn’t.  However, never let it said that Nordic walkers only walk in the good weather.  Jon did tell us that the weather would pick up mid-morning.

Everyone met up, donned their waterproofs, received Murray Mints from Cathy (one of our regular Nordic walkers) to pop in their pockets for the morning.

Apart from Julie who was leading the walk, we had Jon (the boss), 4 regular Nordic walkers, 2 who we hadn’t seen for a while and 1 new lady who was on her first Shepherds Walk. Everyone was introduced to each other, reminded to go at their own pace and after a warm up we set off.

The group soon started to go at their own pace.  There were some fast walkers who went ahead with Jon and the not so fast walkers who were walking at the back with me, with others in between.  Lots of chatter could be heard from the group as everyone was catching up and getting to know each other.

As Jon promised the rain did stop quite quickly into the walk and the sun even got out at lunchtime just in time to dry us out.

This was a walk with a few hills/inclines and this started quite a conversation between the walkers as to what was the difference.  There was a relatively steep hill in the middle at which point people were left to go at their own pace, to stop if needed (it showed the power of the poles that nobody did).  A reminder of the technique for walking up and down hill was given.

At the end of the walk, we had a cool down and leaflets were given out regarding the Nordic Walking Festival (17 May) and also a reminder that the next walk was at Druridge Bay (14 June).

Next stop everyone went to the Muddy Boots Café (where the old Tourist Information Centre was) where we all stopped for food and drinks.  Highly recommended.

I look forward to see you all very soon.


Tue 13th May 2014

Wall to Housesteads (To link St Oswalds Way to Isaacs Tea Trail)

Wall to Housesteads (To link St Oswalds Way to Isaacs Tea Trail)

The group assembled at the car park at Housteads to be not only by Mike but also a light drizzle which stopped as the bus arrived and we all piled on.

Had Sundance and his old soft shoe shuffle done enough to give us a dry day? The omens were not looking good with very dark clouds massing to the west.

However on getting out of the bus at Wall the cloud had lightened making Mike feel a little bit better.  From Wall you walk next to the road heading upstream to cross the River North Tyne at Chollerford before walking back downstream past Chesters still next to the road. 

After a short uphill section we left the road behind at Wallwick and after a short detour round some houses you actually started to walk along the Wall.  A gradually ascent eventually brought us to Mile Castle 29 and a coffee break in the lee of a wood and views up the North Tyne Valley and way in the distance the Cheviots. 

We continued uphill until we reached a height of 250m and the Trig point near Mile Castle 30.  From here we had extensive views in all directions as long as they were not hidden by rain squalls.  We only now had to walk a roman mile to reach our lunch stop overlooking the Roman fort of Brocolitia with its temple to Mithraeum.  As we ate lunch with the wind on our backs the storm clouds where building up to the North West of us ie up wind.

No sooner had we finished lunch and started to walk it started to rain.  So we all put our water proofs on.  After a few hundred paces the rain and hail started in earnest for the next four Mile Castles and here heads down we plodded along pretending we were enjoying ourselves.  On reaching Sewingsheilds Crags the rain stopped and hoods came down. 

We continued along the wall for a further 1 mile (English) before reaching Housestead Roman Fort.  From here a short walk down hill brought us back to the car park and our waiting cars.

Mon 12th May 2014

Caudale Moor and Hartsop Dodd

Caudale Moor and Hartsop Dodd

A plethora of cyclists greeted us as 200 of them were undertaking a gruelling race up/down Kirkstone Pass and along Ullswater. For us a less tortuous task, having a great day on the Fells and ‘conquering’  two Wainwrights, Caudale Moor and Hartsop Dodd.

Edwina, Janine and Kate had travelled across from Belsay and Newcastle for our walk plus three charming companions, namely Rose, Gala and Scout – one Poodle and two Border Terriers!

Off we went from the Kirkstone Pass Inn (no, we didn’t have a drink!) and our first stop was to see the monument to the tenants of the Inn dating back to 1914. The grave was high on the fell tops and was the dying wish of father and son to be placed where they’d able to be see their beloved pub from on high.

Rain/wind/showers/blue sky and sunshine were the flavours of the day and the views were still stunning. We duly arrived at the top of Caudale Moor and then onwards to Hartsop Dodd.

There had been a significant amount of waterfall in the previous week so it was quite a tricky task coming off Hartsop Dodd. Janine cleverly improvised by walking backwards to ensure her two Terriers got down safely and Edwina carried Poodle Rose within her jacket. It’s a dog’s life!

A nice lunch spot was spotted by Kate in Hartsop village and then it was a lovely walk along the valley floor back to Patterdale were our taxi awaited us.

All in all a grand day out, the second Shepherds Walk Lake District venture. Roll on the Blencathra Challenge!