David just toasted “sweet and complicated people,” which we all agreed the eight of us are. So we clinked our pints as we do every night in whatever pub we find ourselves. We’re making this work, walking our way across England together.
Today was a walk along Swaledale, the valley of the River Swale. All the people we’ve met doing the C2C (and that’s part of the experience, the people you leap frog with along the path) did the low route today. Even in good weather it’s more scenic and a needed break, being mostly a level walk through hay pastures and old lead mining towns along the river, running brown with the peat of the Pennines. Still, the 12 miles felt like more, which the other walkers here at the Buck Hotel pub agreed was true.
We’re in the Yorkshire Dales National Park and it’s as beautiful as the Lake District but in a much broader, less nestled in and bleaker way.
The hay fields are full of wildflowers and sweep down to the river, buttercups, wild geranium, clover and thistle.
And the stone walls and buildings and bridges go on and on. As we will. Only 12.5 miles tomorrow, but then two very long days and two mid-teen days. We’ve done 112 miles and have 88 to do. I think we may make it.