Monday, 21 April 2014

Planning a walk

It's been a lovely day, I've been outside a lot. Cleaning and waxing my walking boots and wiping the mud from the bottoms of my waterproof trousers. I also took my office outside for a while as I wanted to do some research into possible accommodation for the forthcoming walk. I have a lot of tourist information brochures so I checked through them and made a list of B & B's along the proposed route.

It's taking me a while to sort out a suitable route, I have a rough idea of the places I will be going through, but as I look into it further I might have to tweak it a bit. Nothing is certain until I actually do the walk. A lot of the decisions will be based on timing and how far away is the next overnight stop. As I walk I am constantly watching the time and working out how far to the next village or town. Ideally I would like to walk an average 18 miles a day, starting at 9am and finishing at 6pm, but it won't always work out like that, because there won't always be accommodation where I want it. I remember when I really wanted to stop at 7.30pm because I was so tired, but had to keep walking until 9pm to get to the next town. On the other hand I had an early finish one day because I'd had enough and there was a bed available in a B & B, so I took it. Swings and roundabouts, horses for courses.

The plan so far is to start at the Humber Bridge, I hope to get a lift there as it would save time rather than catching two buses. On the first night I am aiming for Pocklington, but I may only get as far as Market Weighton. Getting to Pocklington in one hit is doable, it's 25 miles, I did in in reverse when I came back that way once, depends what time it is when I hit Market Weighton, I might stop there.

From there on to York, Easingwold, Thirsk, Bedale, Leyburn, Aysgarth, Hawes, Kirkby Stephen, Appleby in Westmorland, finishing at Penrith. Haven't worked out the mileage, at a guess 140 ish. So, this time I shall be walking out and getting a train back.

Now I've got to go over the Ordnance Survey maps again, looking for possible paths and tracks, and check river crossings. When is this going to take place? Soon. If anyone thinks they may be able to meet me please leave a comment with your details, place and phone number, which I won't publish, and I will contact you. You can email if you like. I have just changed the address on the side, for some reason I can't access the emails to the other address on this small computer.

This will be my seventh long walk and I am looking forward to the challenge. As long as my health and fitness hold out I shall keep walking. I love the freedom of setting off not knowing where I will be sleeping that night. I'll be carrying minimum gear, probably wear the same clothes the whole time, ha ha. Don't get too close, and I will be reporting in every night, signal permitting.

I'm going to have an hour on the settee reading a book now. Toodle pip.  


  1. Sounds exciting!!
    I do admire you, and I wish that I was as brave to attempt a 140 mile walk by myself. Safe travels, and I hope you have a wonderful time. Looking forward to your updates.

  2. Thats going to be a lovely walk, the bit between Bedale and Hawes has some really nice scenery.
    Have you ever read any of the Alfred Wainwright books? The coast to coast route is slightly north to your route and i know you like to walk alone but it might help. He also says that catching a bus to a nearby town to find digs is ok and you can go back in the morning to carry on where you left off. I suppose it depends weather you see it as cheating.

  3. 25 miles in one day!!! Some of my friends wouldn't even want to drive that far....

    Good luck with the walk Ilona, You certainly give yourself a challenge, that is why you are so fit physically and mentally!

  4. Good for you!!! I smile as we live next to the Humber River here in Toronto!

  5. From Margie in Toronto - I thought of you this morning while reading an article in the Guardian about a new book called "A Philosophy of Walking" - I've ut it on my Amazon wish list as I think it will be very interesting - here is the blurb from Amazon:
    Book Description
    Release Date: 28 April 2014
    'By walking we escape the idea itself of identity, the desire to be someone, to have a name and a history... The freedom experienced when walking is about not being anyone because the body that walks has no history; it just has an eternal current of life.' In 'A Philosophy of Walking' Frederic Gros charts the many different ways we get from A to B - the pilgrimage, the promenade, the protest march, the nature ramble - and shows what it tells us about ourselves. He draws attention to other thinkers who also saw walking as a central part of their practice, and ponders over things like why Henry David Thoreau entered Walden Woods in pursuit of the wilderness, the reason Rimbaud walked in a fury while Nerval rambled to cure his melancholy. We learn how Rousseau had to walk to think, Nietzsche in order to write, while Kant walked to distract himself from contemplation. Brilliant, erudite, and always entertaining, Gros is certain to make you reconsider this everyday activity.

    If you can ever get it at the library I'd be interested in your thoughts. Do you walk mainly for exercise - or to see the sites - or to have time to yourself - or is it a combination? I'm really interested in your thoughts as I love to walk and one day would love to be able to do the types of long distance walks that you do.

  6. This all sounds like great fun! (I've run a few marathons in years past (26.2 miles) but i know i couldn't walk it these days.) I'm sure you'll have an excellent adventure! I look forward to seeing lovely pictures!

  7. Can`t wait to follow your exploits! So envious!!!

  8. Looking forward also to the photos. Natalie

  9. Sounds quite an adventure. I do hope the weather stays dry for you. You made me smile with don't get too close comment.

    X x

  10. As always, I am SO impressed by this; by your planning abilities, physical fitness and also being intrepid enough to do it on your own. There is a book quite popular in the States right now called "Wild" by Cheryl Strayed. It's about a young woman walking the Pacific Crest Trail on her own. Apparently it has inspired a lot of young women to give it a go!

  11. great adventures ahead. Take care x

  12. Have a wonderful journey. I have been a bit adventurous recently with my blog reading and have really been enjoying yours. I suppose I am not as frugal as I should be, but we spent years making do through necessity. In the 1970's our favourite book was by John Seymour. Like you, I grew up in a simple, basic way as there simply wasn't any spare money at all. Even now I don't think there is a room in our house which doesn't have second hand or hand made furniture (though we do own new things too) Thanks for writing such interesting things

  13. Hi, just read that you are heading towards Kirby Stephen on your travels. There is a large YHA in the old church on the main high street. Have driven past it many times when we are heading out to the M6. May be worth a look ;-)

    Enjoy your walk,


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