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Deborah and Gwen's
Coast to Coast Diary
DAY 1 – A late start, low mileage but melting temperatures
Monday 17th July
St Bees to Moor Row – 8 miles
At last there was now only one agenda, although the first part of it was to get out of Sheffield. We chose to drive to the Sheffield North exit on the M1 and encountered the remains of a huge fire at Fletchers Bakery in Hillsborough which had been burning all weekend; I think most of South Yorkshire’s fire brigades had been involved. Eventually we reached the M1 and our journey to St Bees was without further incident. We arrived in the car park on the beach at 2 p.m. and were ready to go by 2.30. After selecting a suitably sized pebble we set off up the wooden steps towards St Bees Head. Dad joined us for the first mile and insisted on carrying Mums pack but soon he had to turn back to make the long drive back to Mid Wales. It was only at this point, at last just the two of us, did I feel our adventure had begun. Mum was feeling a mixture of excitement and apprehension. I think she felt that she was fit enough to complete the trip but was slightly concerned that if something went wrong her ‘non-walking’ friends would say she had been foolish to try. She explained to me later that she had a strange sense of guilt, something to do with putting her regained health at risk. I told her not to be so daft and that she owed it to herself and to everyone else to enjoy her recovery.
2 miles into the cliff top walk we made a slight detour down into Fleswick Bay, firstly because in our haste to get going we had forgotten to dip our boots into the Irish Sea but primarily to look at the beautiful rock formations. With 6 miles still to walk to Moor Row we soon had to make our way back up to the cliff top. Surprisingly we saw only one other walker and as the temperature rose to be uncomfortably hot we began to look forward to the refreshments promised by the guidebook in the village of Sandwith. Sadly there is now only a pub, the Dog and Partridge, but even that was closed so we made do with our water bottles, now decidedly warm. As the path snaked its way through the fields we missed our way slightly which resulted in an extra ½ mile on the road. Mum was not too pleased as her feet were now very hot and a little swollen but as soon as we reached the village sign she put a spurt on and we were soon at Jasmine House. We were welcomed by Jim and Margaret who run a very efficient guest house. A good shower made us feel human again and we were given a lift to The Richmond, a pub on the edge of Whitehaven, as there is nowhere to eat in Moor Row. After a good meal the barman phoned Jasmine House and Jim reappeared to taxi us back for an early night – what service!
Thought for the day:
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