Starting Time: 9:20 AM
Finish Time: 5:10 PM
Total Mileage: 15.5 miles
Bed & Breakfast: Lisvane
Last Day! After two weeks on the road the excitement has really started to build that the end of our journey is nearly complete. There is something very different in a hike that takes multiple days and weeks rather than an afternoon. A feeling of victory, accomplishment, overcoming...etc. But wait, I am getting ahead of myself...as they say, "we ain't done yet!"
|Little Beck Woods|
|We found Shelob's Lair...Run!|
In the morning at breakfast our landlady's demeanor had changed and she was very gracious and talkative (maybe something else on her mind last night?). She explained that she charges for the wi-fi (without my inquiring why) as a donation to the volunteer mountain rescue teams that help stranded hikers. (Any irritation I had with paying 2 pounds instantly disappeared). She mentioned that since the BBC documentary on the Coast to Coast with Julia Bradbury had come out in 2009 there had been a spike in the number of hikers needing the services of rescue teams as people watching Julia jogging along the trail were under the impression it was easy...and its NOT! (Rumor has it that Julia didn't even do the walk).
|Last lunch before finishing|
I don't think I have mentioned how much I have enjoyed doing this walk in an English speaking country. The ability to ask a local person directions without crude attempts at a foreign language, speaking in baby talk English, or resorting to charades and hand signals was a welcome advantage. Finally an older man tending his garden saw me with my map in my hand and said, "you look like a lost Coast to Coaster". He went on to tell me that the intersection near us would put us back on track with minimum backtracking...a welcome relief.
We left Grosmont behind us and entered Little Beck wood which allowed for about an hour's walk through possibly the nicest, and most enchanting, woods on the route. It really felt "Middle-Earthy" and we enjoyed the time there save the mud in areas. At Falling Floss Falls there was a nice little cafe near the waterfall where Gabriel and I had a quick sit down lunch so as not to "rush through" our last day. We bought some preserves to take home to Tammy and shared a big slice of carrot cake together...when I say share I mean about 3/4 for me and 1/4 for Gabriel :)
Afterwards we hiked off into the woods and ended up on the wrong side of the river. Gabriel did and "Indiana Jones" by climbing across on a fallen tree while I continued down another 1/8 of a mile until I found a number of rocks that would allow me to get over. (Only got one boot wet).
|Along the coast!|
At one point we missed a marker in the midst of a marshy area and we even knew we could get lost as the map said, "Careful, its easy to get lost in here". There have been a number of times where a compass came in handy on this trip to get our bearings...and this was one of them. We managed to get on some kind of path but realized it was heading us the wrong way again. I didn't even need a compass here as I could see the North Sea and knew we were heading towards Whitby and away from Robin Hood's Bay.
|Robin Hood's Bay|
Old Wainwright though, he doesn't let you finish here, oh no! Like the beginning along the Irish Sea 2 weeks and 200 miles back, he wants you to see the coast for a while before dipping your boot into the water for a finish. And the wait is well worth it. Beautiful cliffs, ocean breezes, and gawking seagulls are part of your last hour or so on the Coast to Coast. Our necks kept straining around every bend to see if we could finally see Robin Hood's Bay...until around one particular bend...there it was. Just a quaint little fishing village...but it was our destination.
|Finishing with new friends!|
Mission accomplished! A dream 16 years in the making was realized.
|The boys enjoying the finish!|