Giggles and High Jinks

It's always nice to catch a train.  So it was great to start this walk at High Bentham station to catch the train along to Giggleswick, apart from the fact that all the time the train was chugg chugging along, I knew we had to chugg chugg back the other way on foot - slightly more intimidating than when you drive to the start of a linear walk!

We nearly recruited a lady on the train. She was joining the Dales Rail walking group, further up the line and had pounced upon us like an expectant cat, thinking we must be part of her gang.  When we explained we were not, but had a long walk in mind she nearly joined up - until she sussed out we were doing 17 miles.  To be fair she was still quite keen but Gill managed to put her off (a tad worried that she might not be able to do the distance before nightfall - a fair thought as we struggled ourselves!!).

Anyway, having chugged contentedly all the way to Giggleswick, it suddenly wasn't so giggle-worthy alighting from the train to a chilly morning.  Rob joined us here and we set off swiftly.  Gill had warned us about some mud en route but after two styles she announced, this is where we start swimming!  A lovely small river was flowing up between the two paths that were meant to mark the footpath.  Some gallantly went for the early wet foot option, and the rest of us climbed the wall (sorry farmer but needs must) and found alternative routes up the series of fields to rejoin the soggy ones. 

It turned out this was great training for the day ahead.  Gymnastics sprang to mind occasionally as I leapt gamely from tussock to tussock.  All I could hear from Ann (who hates that kind of thing) was ahhhh and oohhh and wooops!  With such accompaniment we progressed over the Tatham fells.  I have to say I can't describe the route too well (too busy watching where my feet went to consult the map) but suffice to say we passed some pretty remote and lovely farmsteads all of whom enjoyed lovely views over to the (dry) limestone area of the Yorkshire Three Peaks.  Rob offered to lead a walk over there next summer and I did ask - could we go now? 


Gill offered us a choice just before lunch.  "Well, you can take the dull route, round the nice dry tracks, or you can come this way and see interesting animals and some mud."  What a bunch of suckers!  All of them plumped for the animals.  I just stood blubbering about the nice dry tracks whilst everyone else set off at a trot saying things like "oooh cute animals, wonder what we will see"  and "I do hope there's a Lama".   

Chickens, that's what we saw - chickens and pigs.  I ask you, mud up to my knees for a couple of bantams and a grumpy Gloucester Old Spot (got on well with the Grumpy Gloucester old walker called Nicky).    What a con!

Seriously though, it was a lovely walk, through fells not often frequented by others (no-one's that daft).  And the November weather was stupendous with lovely sunshine all day and hardly a breath of rain and for 12 November you can't often say you were in no hurry to break up the lunch time picnic.   So thanks to Gill for a great route, and could we go again please - perhaps in July?