Friday, 28 June 2019

A Northern Pennine Backpack

More precisely, 2 and a bit days along the Pennine Way and South Tyne Trail. This filled in some gaps for me in this area. I was dropped off in Dufton just before 11am on Tuesday, and found myself  amongst a number of the Summer Spine Race (Fusion I think it's called) details here.  Some images of the trip below......

The first objective Knock Fell, I don't think I've ever climbed up this way I always visited from the main ridge. The Eden Valley laid out before me....what this image doesn't convey is the terrific wind and the massing cloud from the East!

It wasn't long before I was in the cloud...and drizzle..this old cairn is Knock Old Man

And this rather newer effort is the summit of Knock Fell.

In my own mind I left my options open, but with the low cloud and drizzle I decided to follow the bridleway beside the Trout Beck towards the source of the South Tyne. This is the Trout Beck shortly before it joins the River Tees.

The source of the South Tyne...marked by 3 stones no less....hard to tell but it was chucking it down here and continued as far as Alston.

Hence there are no pictures until I'd got the tent pitched and sorted out. the price was good....although it seems a little eccentric. Mick and Gayle had stayed here on one of the long walks so I was fore warned!

The cloud was still low down when I set off so opted to walk the rest of the South Tyne Trail. It follows the old railway for almost all its length.

End of the road (track) for the current narrow gauge railway, and time for my second breakfast.

The South Tyne river from the impressive Lambley Viaduct.

There were many wild flowers along the trail, these Orchids caught my eye.

My last view of the South Tyne as I crossed over it and entered Haltwhistle. The day had improved dramatically it was really hot.... Ice Cream!!

I linked through to Hadrians Wall and the Pennine Way by waking up the "Burn Gorge" splendid. Worth an hour or two of anyones time....although I was on a mission. 

I reached the wall at pictures from there a coach had just disgorged its contents...there were folk everywhere!
This is looking West from Caw Gap

I've walked this portion of the Wall a couple of times, I'd forgotten how much up and down tere was!...Lots!!

Milecastle 39 and Wall marches onward. The group of people spoiling my photograph were filming something...they had a big sword and lots of people sat about....probably curing the dishevelled wreck walking amongst them.

Time to leave the Wall behind here at Rapishaw Gap, off into the boonies.

Having crossed Ridley Common and just about to enter the first piece of forestry, there was a distinct lack of suitabe terrain to pitch a tent on. I decided to go to Haughtongreen Bothy. I figure that there is often suitable pitches near bothies....this wasn't the case here, but I had the bothy to myself anyway.

It's in excllwnt order and very well maintained, even has a composting toilet!

After an early night I was up early, 4.30 am to get some miles done before it got to hot. This was the view from the front door...mist in the dips and a heavy dew.

Spooky Trees!!

Wonderful dew laden spiders webs all along the path back to the Pennine Way.

Crossing Haughton Common as wet to sat the least. Quite clearly no where near as many people walk this section of the trail compared to the Southern sections. There was only about a dozen flagstones beyond the wall on the section I walked.

There was a "Pitstop"/Trail Angel at Horneystead, I had a long chat with them whilst having a mug of tea. But omitted to take any pictures.
the next feature of note is the escarpment above with the mildly amusing name of Shitlington Crags. 

Just beyond the crags as I passed the radio mast I met the first backpackers I'd seen. They thought I was daywalking...and couldn't believe I was carrying less than of them said he had 15kg on his back...and they were staying in B and B's!!
As I crested the hill I could see Bellingham, and here the North Tyne.
This made a good place to stop with good transport links, ready to resume the next section sometime in the future.
All in all a grand trip...although the soles of my feet felt like they were on fire in the end. My ancient Inov8 Terrocs had lost what little cushioning they ever had...they've gone in the bin!
Other than that all good.

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