Coast To Coast Diary

> Day Fifteen

SUNDAY 18th OCTOBER 2009

PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES


Turning the corner into Smithy’s street at five past seven we could see that Nicky wasn’t there. PL had seen him on the Friday and Nicky said he was coming. So after Smithy finished his fag we drove down to Nicky’s house only to see it all in darkness. Nicky is a great lad and is great company and we have enjoyed walking with him very much on the stretches that he came on. But he is a lad and he enjoys going out with his mates on a weekend and getting up early and staying up late don’t always go together. The lads were saying in the front that maybe he had a heavy night and just couldn’t make it. So it now looks like Nicky’s coast to coast is over but it was great sharing parts of my coast to coast with him. It would not have been the same without him, so thank you Nicky for coming along when you could and all the great memories you’ve given us. Maybe you’ll walk the last section with us and the three musketeers can ride again eh? One for all and sod the rest! Our destination today was three miles beyond The Lion Inn at Blakey where we left off last Saturday. It was a much better morning than it was last week and our mood in the car reflected that. We were going to have a grand walk across the moors and Alex was going to spend the day at Grosmont.

Grosmont is a lovely place with steam trains running to and fro and this weekend was their annual war weekend. When we were going over the moors the humans were saying what a glorious morning it really was and I couldn’t wait to get out. We stopped at the car parking space, had a quick bite to eat and with that we were off telling Smithy we would see him in Grosmont. We went along the road to a path on the right that would take us past Trough House which apparently is a disused shooting lodge.

I fancied a rest on the stone seat at the lodge but PL says it was too early for a rest and shouted to me to come on. The path went on for a long time but it was grand walking across the moors on such a lovely day. It eventually lead us to a road and we were on this for about a mile before we took a track keeping a trig point on our left. This was Glaisdale Rigg and it lead us to a road after a cattle grid which then took us down into Glaisdale.

Turning right at the bottom then it was a maze (whey hey) of turns through the village taking us past Glaisedale train station then under the railway so we could have a look at Beggars Bridge. Going back under the railway bridge we took a path to the left that went up into East Arnecliff Wood. The path was very muddy in places and sometimes it was very high above the river below.  After about a mile we reached a lane which took us down to Egton Bridge. We walked past a lovely little pub called The Horshoe Inn. Then beyond that a path drops down to some stepping stones across the Esk. PL was worried here in case I went in but I’m a lot more sure footed than he is. He took me across ridiculously slow and was glad when we got across especially when he turned round and he could see about 30 old biddies, who were obviously from some kind of walking club, sitting on an embankment having their sandwiches watching us.

As we climbed a little dirt mound we were greeted by more stepping stones this time in full view of the biddies who were all now staring at us and I bet, some, if not all, were hoping we would have a slip into the water to bring a little giggle to their afternoon. But we were across quickly, more sure footed than a mountain goat living on sure foot mountain. Where’s the ginnel, was PL’s attempt at conversation as he directed the question at a sane looking biddy tucking into her butties. She put us right as we slid between the houses out onto the road. We turned right to the main road at the top, then turning left and crossing the road we went right down a permissive unmade road signed, Egton Estates Private Road. It goes along the valley bottom and has replaced an old toll road that carried everything from cart to coffin. PL read a sign out that says please don’t feed the donkeys but we never seen any. We seen a lot of dogs though, and some were off lead much to PL’s dismay, as little Findlay came up for a closer look at me and I let little Fin know in no uncertain terms not to come any nearer.

PL was apologising to Fins owner for my barking saying that I am not really good around other dogs and Fins owner was apologising for not getting the lead on Fin quick enough. Humans, they are a funny lot I was thinking as I nodded a goodbye to Findlay and we were on our way. The track took us under a railway bridge then looping round brought us out at the road that takes us into Grosmont. Walking up the street we could hear music and the whistles of the steam trains. Just as we reached the crossing a train was pulling out of the station.

Then we made our way on to the platform and went back in time as we sat and watched some wartime dancing over on the other platform. We mingled with the crowd at the same time looking for Smithy. We looked for him for ages in the crowd but we couldn’t find him. So we were just about to set off up the big hill out of this little village. But as we crossed the track we could hear Smithy shouting from the crowd. He was parked in a car park in the woods and we went back to the car. PL dumped his rucksack and got changed into his trainers for the last couple of miles up the hill and I had a quick bite to eat and a drink before setting off.

Smithy was telling PL that a plane was coming over at half past 2. As it was twenty past two now it would be good timing to see it says PL as we set off on our way to the level crossing to make our way up the big hill but couldn’t resist one last walk through the wartime crowd. We went over the crossing then passing the Station Tavern on the left we started our climb up Fair Head Lane out of Grosmont heading towards the A169 Whitby road. As we were climbing the hill (and what a steep climb it was), the little aeroplane did come across and done a couple of displays. It probably was about a mile and a half of hill before we reached the cattle grid and then the road levelled out for the last stretch to the sherpa which was sitting at the top near the A169 as the big car park on this road was closed for some reason. On the way to the car we passed the coast to coast path across Sleights Moor that we would be starting our next and final walk from.