Sunday, 7 August 2016

Dales Way Day 4

Day 4
9.69 miles - 15.6 km

Well! What a windy night! It only just started when we went to sleep. I could hear it coming through the trees first, travelling down through the valley before striking at the tent. Tom was on the windy side so the tent flattened him first leaving me untouched. He eventually got out to re-peg the tent at midnight. I slept on and off through the night. Rain struck at some point and splattered sporadically. Waking for 5 am - by this point we'd have enough so were walking by 6 am. We didn't have to go far to reach Barden bridge following the track. Continuing on we follow the River Wharf and enter the Strid wood. It's a dense wood and lovely to be hiking through it. We pass by the Cavendish Pavilion which was closed till 8 am so we refill our water and keep going. It isn't far to Bolton Abbey as we follow the ebb and flow of the path. 

Outdoor activities for kids such appear around each bend and we occasionally get glimpses of Bolton Abbey. We head into the grounds and I chose to cross via the stepping stones. The abbey stands in all its crumbly beauty in the dull morning light. I'm glad it's free to venture inside. We take a moments rest and chill in the grassland and play Pokemon Go. Along the river and through a forest and then Tom's knee pain returns. Luckily only two miles remain and we soon got these done. Ilkley comes into view after the last bend of the river and we come back into civilisation after briefly leaving it. Then flower shop I'd read about in the guide book appears next to the old bridge and where we find the twin stone bench.

We're done! 😀

We take photos and chill out before walking into the town. I see a Greggs and gorge myself on pizza slices, a sausage roll and doughnuts. We then wander around waiting till 3 pm when Tom's friend will arrive. We settle into the grass area in front of the car park. Suddenly I’m knackered. I think the past three days have caught up with me. Then at 3 pm he arrives - car keys in hand! 
We profusely apologise and thank him promising baked goods in return for the good deed. Then we  set off to Windermere where thankfully Oyo is still there. I bid good bye to Tom and zoom home to the Yorkshire Dales where my bath awaits me.