The Tour De France Grand Depart, as anyone with a TV or radio will know, started from Yorkshire this year. And whilst I’ve never had more than a passing interest in watching bike races; it seemed crazy not to be part of such an enthusiastically embraced event, living so close as I do to part of the route.
By close, I mean I could have headed off into Huddersfield (about 7 miles away) on the train with my wife and daughter (not just The Grand Depart swinging through but a Food and Drink festival, hmmm … tempting).
Or, I could hike over the moors to Holme Moss (about 6 miles each way) with my son and son in law (man I feel old typing that, ho hum).
The moors won out and the three of us (four, with Brodie Dog) headed off up Wessenden Valley, across towards Black Hill summit and then tracked across to Holme Moss, where we joined (apparently) 60,000. There were less people right at the summit where we were compared to lower down the valley but still enough to line both sides of the road to see the bikes whizz through. It was a great atmosphere.
It was pretty humid on the outward journey and Brodie is starting to drag her feet more and more on longer walks, kind of sad to see but she still likes a yomp out.
It was perfect weather at the summit of Holme Moss and she / we had plenty of water to revive with, ready for the return walk (avec un short sharp shower just near Black Hill which caught out the surprising number of folks without waterproofs).
I’ve never seen the moors across to Holme Moss so busy, it looked how I imagine the Kinder Scout mass trespass must have years ago.
Below is a little film I put together with my GoPro.