Came around sooner than expected for some people as four weeks wasn’t enough time to train. Had a few dropouts or perhaps they just needed some man up pills #ThomasWard. Apparently, Friday is a working day in the real World.
We arrived at Horton in Ribblesdale at 0730, 2 Pauls, 1 Rob and 1 Mike. Car park already packed so Friday was a walking day! Sustenance purchased locally was 4 muffins and a chicken and bacon sandwich (treated myself to some sugary carbs) and some water.
First peak Pen-y-ghent, Mike set the pace which was fast, obviously Joe Wicks and Dave Stecca is paying off. The weather was perfect, blue skies and no wind. We started to overtake small groups of like-minded people out on a Friday for a personal challenge and most raising money for charity. Arrived at the top to some amazing views, with Morecambe Bay in the distance. Quick photo at the top, still smiling. One down, two to go.
Whernside next, it looked miles away. Found some mislaid waterproofs which we recovered with the hope of finding their rightful owner. Eventually, we caught up with a group of four and asked if they had lost any waterproofs, the answer was yes backed up by their dancing up and down. Missed a trick really, should have asked for a charitable donation (or held them ransom until we had a phone signal (text PGWW £3 to 70070)). We had however all tried the jacket on to see if it fit before handing it back. Only Joking, it was a woman’s jacket. Carried on, the final bit before Ribblehead Viaduct was a slog along the road, stopped for a spot of lunch. All the wonderful scenery and views and we stopped next to the only road around, as everyone else seemed to do, we were hoping for a burger van to be there, needless to say, my lunch consisted of a muffin and half a chicken and bacon sandwich.
After a short stop, it was onto the steady climb still at a good pace to the top of Whernside. Another quick picture at the top and on we went, the descent less pleasurable with a few niggles, mainly knackered knees, and new boots. Ingleborough looming in the distance and big black rain clouds in hot pursuit we descended as quick as our screaming knees would allow. At the pub, we were going to ask if they would fill our water bottles, I thought it a little rude and thought we had better buy something first, and I was after a rest and something warm to drink. Mike got the teas in and we warmed up and dried out a little before continuing with full water bottles.
With the last peak firmly in sight with most of the talk (yes we were still talking to each other) and questions being which way do we go up, I couldn’t sugar coat it and said you see that ridiculously steep bit there, that’s the path. The steepest ascent of the day, things hurting and energy levels almost on empty, time to show our ‘Yorkshire Grit’. Finally reached the top, cold, wet and exposed, quick group photo, still smiling, a little red-faced and sweaty. All downhill from here but the worst part of the walk just seems to go on forever. We were convinced the signposts were lying to us. After some hobbling, moaning and limping we made it to The Crown, only to be greeted by a sign saying ‘No wet boots or clothes’, thought it was a joke as the bar was full of walkers and don’t these small pubs rely on hill walkers for their livelihoods. After a quick well-deserved pint and some man hugs it was off to Settle for Fish and Chips, well it was a Friday.