Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Day 26 -- Saltburn to Guisborough, by bus; Roseberry Topping, 9 miles.

Once again, my phone guided me on the bus to Guisborough. All of the buses here seem to have Wi-fi. I don’t know if that’s the standard everywhere, but I realized today why it’s a good idea – perhaps the reason the local buses have it.

In the past, groups of teenagers on buses tended to be rowdy and obnoxious. Some even brought boom boxes aboard and played their music loudly. Now with Wi-fi on the buses, they sit quietly and text their friends. They listen to their music through ear-buds attached to their phones, and disturb nobody. If you sit at the back of a bus loaded with teenagers, you’ll see their heads bobbing up and down and side to side in rhythm to their music, as if the bus were filled with so many bobble-head dolls. It’s comical, really. So if the buses in your town don’t have Wi-fi, start a petition. The drivers and other passengers will appreciate it.

After dropping my bag at the hotel, I set off to climb Roseberry Topping. You may recall that is the imposing, shark-fin shaped hill near Guisborough, visible from the Coast to Coast footpath. I had planned to climb it tomorrow, but with good weather, I decided to attempt it today. In the back of my mind, I had anticipated a serious climb, like that of Yosemite’s Half Dome or Zion’s Angels’ Landing. Instead, I found an ascent suited to its name.


Picture a cross between my hometown’s Shinob Kibe and Boston’s Bunker Hill, only without British troops firing at you. Picture yourself walking uphill while licking the roseberry topping off an ice cream cone, while your head is bobbling to the rhythm of Tiptoe through the Tulips. That’s how serious the climb was. Now to be fair, there were some precipitous edges, and there were plenty of 4- and 5-year olds who caused mothers some concern as they skipped close to the edges, but it wasn’t as if anybody had to be roped up.


Still, the view from the top was outstanding, with the North Sea on one horizon and high moorland ridges on the other, patchwork quilt farms below and big cities in the middle distance. With a little route-finding, I returned to my hotel in Guisborough via the Cleveland Way, over moorlands, past farm fields and through dense woodlands, concluding a very nice day.



Oddly enough, my hotel didn’t have the Wi-fi as advertised, so this posting is several days late. Maybe I should have taken an over-night bus instead.