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Image: Michael de Greasley See also: Dave Shaw and David King's blog: Dayton or Bust!
Three Saltaire Historians and a long walk home to Saltaire from New Lanark...

19 June 2011 | 20 - 21 June | 22 June | 23 June | Phase 2: 17 & 19 July | 20 July |
21 July | 22 - 23 July | 24 - 25 July | 26 July

Terra Firma - The Home Territory of the Yorkshire Dales. Yipee!
Dated: 22 July 2011

A 16 mile walk today has brought us down to Ribblehead – and into the Dales. Coming over the last hill of the day (Wold Fell) and getting our first sight of the famous viaduct  lifted our spirits no end. We’re only 45 miles from home, with about 165 miles of walking behind us.

The Majestic Ribblehead Viaduct

Whernside framed by the Ribblehead Viaduct

We’d started the day walking over the eastern side of Mallerstang Common, north of Garsdale. Rising to 708m it’s quite a feature. Of particular interest are the rivers and becks that flow off its hillsides – the River Eden rises on the southern flanks, flowing north to the Solway Firth; the waters of the  River Ure also rise on the southern slopes of Mallerstang Common and flow into the North Sea. And now we see the River Ribble, rising near Ribblehead and flowing westward into the Irish Sea.

Roger admires Water Cut another of the River Eden Flights of Fancy

Dave admires the splendid new signage of the Pennine Bridleway

The Sportsman's Inn at Cowgill in Dentdale

Ribblehead is such a focal point - attracting walkers, runners, climbers, potholers, railway enthusiasts and tourists all enjoying the wonderful scenery of this part of the Dales.
So many in fact that there is no room at the (Ribblehead) Inn for us. So the Bunk House it is for tonight….

David indulged himself today by driving down to Ilkley Book Fair, where he’s picked up “a lot of expensive rubbish” (actually Roger & Dave think it’s probably including a hidden gem on Saltaire…)

Steve Davies patiently waits his turn while David King dominates the table

We’re looking forward to the final four days of walking. We know now where we’re going, we know the weather’s set fair, and we know that the beautiful limestone walls and sheep pastures of Airedale & Wharfedale lie ahead.

Silent Monitor Score for today: pure white – good weather, wonderful scenery, fantastic walking and frequent views of an engineering miracle – the Settle Carlisle Railway.

Silent monitor

The Westbound Waters of the Ribble Valley
Dated 23 July 2011

We’ve reached Stainforth, two miles north of Settle, staying at the very comfortable Craven Heiffer Inn.

Today is a very special day – it’s the 45th anniversary of Roger & Bronwyn’s wedding, and England’s World Cup victory. Who scored the most, you ask!!

We survived last night and the vagaries of Ribblehead’s Station Inn bunk barn, where our cup did floweth over - but it wouldn’t have done if the toilets had been anywhere near the rest of the accommodation.

We slept here at Ribblehead!

The Ribble from Helwith Bridge

The prospect of shorter walking days is inviting – most of our really long journey days are now behind us.

We knew where we going today – familiar paths through familiar villages, with good views of the Three Peaks along the way.  The British Heart Foundation and other charities had organised a Three Peaks sponsored walk, and hundreds were taking part. We met many of them shortly after they had conquered Penyghent, with two peaks to go - hope everyone achieved a successful result and enjoyed the experience.

Ashbourne (Derbyshire) teachers doing a great job raising funds for their school
- & chatting to Roger

Chloe (from Nottingham) & Dan (New Foundland & Alberta) laughing their way
over the Three Peaks for British Heart Foundation

Penyghent in all its glory

The remainder of our day’s walk was over beautiful limestone slopes, with an easy descent into Stainforth, in glorious sunshine.

David had a productive expedition to Sedbergh which has several antiquarian bookshops. He managed to acquire for Roger a copy of Jack Reynolds’ “The Great Paternalist” – the seminal work on Titus Salt. Roger’s search of several years has come to an end – and at a bargain price. “Thank you, David”.

Today’s shorter walk gave us time to visit the19th century lime kilns near Stainforth – highly recommended if you are ever in the vicinity. The lime was used as fertiliser, and in the manufacture of steel and…chocolate.

Inside the Hoffmann Lime Kiln at Stainforth

Tomorrow we are bound for Gargrave, and - finally - Saltaire’s own river: the Aire!

P.S. Hope you all spotted the mistake in yesterday’s blog. It wasn’t Whernside that was framed by the viaduct’s arches - it was, of course, Ingleborough.

Silent monitor mark for today: Perfect White!

Silent monitor

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