Saturday 5 July
After a fairly reasonable nights sleep the alarm went off at the usual 7am for us to get ready for work……lol! This morning the difference it was raining outside, I checked the weather report on my phone and yes rain was forecast and yes it really was raining, just in case we were both hearing things.
The weather reports told us the rain would ease up about 8am and the day in store was likely to be a mixture of sunshine and showers…..o joy, another day to look forward to of waterproofs on….waterproofs off.
We finally dragged ourselves out of our tent into the dryness of the larger marquee which we had utilised as a shelter complete with the now very cosy and could we possibly fold it up / squash down and make it really really lightweight picnic bench? Suffice to say we took our time over breakfast, packed everything up and wandered out of the Scout camp by 9.30am.
The day ahead was to be a mixture of fields, some woods and a few villages which are now becoming our rendezvous points for a natter and a bite to eat for me.
After about 2 miles into the walk I reached the first of my now favourite rapeseed fields and with the rain the night before was likely to end up very wet walking through the field. It really is surprising just how much water the foliage retains ready to drench the poor unfortunate walker that has to pass through….I think the plants do it deliberately!!
So with the first of many showers it was waterproofs on and off I went through the rapeseed…..o what fun!
I met up with Rachel in Hockliffe and the waterproofs had been on on and of on three separate occasions and that was only 4.5 miles into the day!! We parted and agreed the next meeting point and I headed into the fields once more. As I approached a farm, which I knew I had to cross through the farm yard and fields, I could see some very amorous and frisky Bovine goings on and with the calves in there too. Do the cows have no shame?
I thought to myself, I bet I have to pass through there ……and yes I was right. Now there was absolutely no way I was going into that field, so I wandered around to find another way as the path only took me through part of it before leaving to go into a cow free field. Well farmers being farmers every which way was blocked or secure with barbed wire fences. Well I am made of more determined stuff and a Yorkshire Man to boot. so I hatched a cunning plan…if I went through the farmyard a bit more looking out for the Farmer so he did not catch me trespassing?….Nay merely being economical with the footpath course, I could pass under the barbed wire fence, through some very boggy stinky stuff, under another barbed wire fence into a space about six foot square surrounded by barbed wire fences and then under a final barbed wire fence…..A piece of cake, easy peasy lemon squeezy!! O I forgot I had a 15 kilo pack on my back. So not so easy but with some cunning moves, dodging, ducking, crawling and dragging I managed it without a scratch.
Rachel was in serious corner shop finding mode as every village we had passed through today either did not have what we wanted or the shop had closed down some years earlier. As I reached Totternhoe I was by now ready to eat anything including a “Scabby Donkey”. Rachel bless her, rang me to utter those immortal words……..there’s no shop here either!! But I have met a very nice man in a pub and they do sandwiches and baked potatoes and stuff……I’m on my way.
Suffice to say said the man was the owner of The Cross Keys, a thatched circa 14c pub. Everyone cheered when I arrived, with words like….”So you’ve made it”!
The Landlord was eager for us to be rested and watered before we continued with our journey, with some locals keen to hear of and follow our adventures.
In the next village, Edlesbrough we purchased supplies for a gastronomy tea and the rest day ahead of us - well more pasta, tinned veg, goodies for sandwiches and fruit for pudding - yes we are posh campers.
We were both tired bunnies by now and ready to get to our campsite for the weekend which we arrived at separately some 3 miles after leaving the final village.
Upon arriving, the site was very full and we squeezed ourselves into a small corner by our neighbours who we had been informed had gone to the musical festival in Tring and could be a bit noisy when they get back……O dear me!!
After showers and a sumptuous pasta meal and fruit for pudding we were both rejuvenated but still tired so hit the sack at 9pm.
Distance - 15 miles
Distance since Helmsley - 335.75
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