Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Day 20 -- Blakey to Grosmont, 14 miles

The North York Moors are bleak and remote. Fortunately for walkers, there are excellent trails though areas that would otherwise be unpleasantly boggy. The excellent trails were not constructed with walkers in mind; in the 1800s the area was extensively mined for iron and other minerals, and railways were built to ship the ore. Mining ore is no longer as profitable as mining walkers’ pockets, so in a typical rails-to-trails conversion, footpaths were provided for walkers, and tourists were provided for hoteliers. Stone markers are all that remains of the former railway.



When the tourists stop coming in the off-season, the moors become lonely. With only stone markers to keep them company, locals gave names to the stone markers.

Marie-Helene and Normand at Young Ralph Cross
Fat Betty
I spent the entire morning walking with Andrew, Normand and Marie-Helene. Just short of Glaisdale, we came upon Dave and Geoff. They will be arriving at Robin Hood’s Bay on Friday, a day after the rest of us. After a short chat, we said our final good-byes and moved on.

Beggar's Bridge in Glaisdale

Andrew, Normand and Marie-Helene stopped for night at Egton Bridge, and I moved on alone to Grosmont. I had hoped for a ride from  a group of Dutch car enthusiasts but, although they were friendly, they didn't offer me a ride. They'll probably regret it once they read my first posting and see that I once owned an MGB.

Triumph, but what year?

As I entered Grosmont, I met Paul, a park ranger from Tasmania, and Robin, who lives in Sunderland. I’ve been sharing beers and dinners with them for the past week, and we agreed to do so again tonight.

Paul and Robin