As part of my prep for the 3 Peaks challenge, I’m jumping at the chance to do any longish walks.
When my friend Jeff said he was going to join the folk trail people as part of their Land’s End to John O’Groats adventure but was figuring out how to get to the rendezvous point with them, I offer to be chauffeur and hike buddy for some of the day.
It sounded like a good excuse to get some hiking in and to meet some interesting (and as it turned out) nice folk.
As the folk trail team say: “The folk trail is an organised walk from from Land’s End to John O’Groats, stopping at as many folk music sessions and clubs as we can along the way. We will be recording the music and collating an archive of photos, audio and video recordings to capture a snapshot of folk music in 2011. The walk begins at Land’s End, Cornwall (1st April 2011), and we aim to complete the 1,200 miles to John O’Groats by late June.”
We started at Ilam Hall, which is a really nice Youth Hostel.
I did about 3 hours up the Dovedale path with them and despite it pouring down for most of the way, I really enjoyed it.
Okay – there were no really steep inclines but a fair bit of rough terrain to get my legs used to. And really lovely Derbyshire limestone scenes and a pretty tree-lined gorge to boot.
At midday I left the guys to carry on until I see them again on Tuesday 10th May at a local pub to me where they’ll do a folk music session.
I then did the middle aged man thing of pretending to be fitter than I am and went off track and up hill to look at some caves I had seen earlier.
It was really slippy (Limestone turns to almost soapy quality when wet, as Jeff told me) and about half way up a really steep route I did stop to think (and have a coffee) that I could easily slip and do more than break the finger I had on some slippy stones two years back.
Actually I got to the top and lent my head-torch to some other people wanting to explore the caves who couldn’t actual see in them.
They turned out to be rock climbers so didn’t seem as red in the face as me when they had got to the top
Well worth the faintly treacherous (honest) ascent and descent.