Thursday April 27th
Air BnB stop, Kirkby Malham to Hawes YHA
Distance: 27 ml
Hawes Youth Hostel,
0345 371 9120
B&B + Packed Lunch: £40.93
Expected walking time: 10h 49min
The first ‘big beast’ day arrived. 27 miles to be walked including so many climbs! I needed a ‘double day’ in order to make Middleton in Teesdale by the 29th – an important appointment awaited.
Started early after a quick but filling breakfast (thanks Bridget!) I retraced my steps back to the PW and was faced with a steep climb through Hanlith: foretelling the day to come.
My own mini Yorkshire 3 peaks today: Fountains Fell @ 655m, Pen y Ghent @ 696m and Cam High Road @ >500m.
A sole early morning jogger was passed on the descent into Malham. That’s the last person I’d see until Pen y Ghent. No one to be seen at Malham Cove or on the limestone pavement. But I didn’t linger, I could see Fountains Fell was shrouded in low cloud and there was rain in the air. A stiff westerly was blowing and I hoped things would clear up later.
Climbing the cove and out of the dry valley was easier than expected. I’d seen walkers loaded with full packs struggling here on previous visits. Fountains Fell was also a generally gentle climb, the ascent coming over a few miles. The path is also man-made aiding speed and route finding. Fountains Fell cleared of low cloud as I climbed and earlier showers petered out. Selfies at the cairns marking the top of the ascent, but the wind was chilly and I wanted to keep moving.
Getting to the foot of Pen y Ghent took longer than expected. I met a party of 6 senior walkers at the stile at the shoulder of the hill. The ascent from this point was easier than actually getting to this point. Helped, I think, by having people to talk to as we ascended. Shout out to the lady who at age 65 set herself the target of 65 summits that year!
The cold wind was still blowing on the summit of PYG, so I had some fruit, took some snaps and started down to my next objective: the junction between the 3 peaks path and the PW heading out of Horton to Hawes. I looked at the sign showing Horton 1.5 miles knowing that I had another 13 or so miles to do and was only about half way. When I reached the junction it was time for a proper break. The wind was less blowy at this spot and the sun was making sneak peaks. Out came the jelly babies purchased from the Dalesman Cafe to help keep my spirits up on the climb over to Hawes.
The climb up to Cam End was rewarded with a fine view of all the Yorkshire 3 Peaks and the Ribblehead viaduct. I met a couple walking the Dales Way here to. They had the PW scheduled for August.
The Cam Road went on and on and on. And was not much better when I turned on to the west Cam Road. Eventually Hawes came into view and I descended Rottenstone Hill and made my way to the YHA past the creamery whilst making silly hand movements and doing a poor impersonation of Peter Sallis. Made it!
06:52 Left Kirkby Malham
08:07 Exited the dry valley above the cove
10:30 ‘summit’ of Fountains Fell
11:38 style at foot of PYG
12:17 summit of PYG
13:20 junction 3 Peaks and PW from Horton
14:34 Lin Gill
14:57 Cam End
Stats according to Moves app
3,323 calories burned