Two NAM girls & their journey to Yorkshire Dales & The Lake District
Met Alison, chief navigator, at Tesco Dereham, early 5.30am, it was foggy & slightly drizzly.
Took A47 to A17 had a good uneventful ride to Newark.
Stopped at a Little Chef for a break rather cold and wet by now, this turned out to be a pleasant change for both of us, as the girls there went beyond the call of duty, took our gloves to be dried, as we tucked into smoked salmon & scrambled eggs on toast. Alison joked that she needed a hot water bottle. And lo & behold within two minutes one appeared.
We soldiered onto Otley and Bolton Abbey, Heading out of Burnsall, a lunch break approximately 1:15 pm at the Red Lion. And what a contrast to the last stop. Staff had attitude and bad manners, cheese sandwich, with hardly any cheese. We didn’t stay long.
Then headed to Aysgarth, took a wrong turn towards Pateley Bridge U turn, and headed off back along the B6256 onto B6160 up to Aysgarth.
Another stop at the Aysgarth Fall Hotel the landlord took our wet gear to dry while we had coffee. He then went onto produce his laptop to point out good biking roads and places to visit. What a star.
Onto Kendal via Hawes and Sedbergh, to be met by a pair of Peregrine falcons circling above, for our three nights stay. The Country Hotel in Kendal centre, so what did we expect for £30 a night each, Ok very basic would not stay there again.
Leisurely walk into Kendal for our evening meal, so we eat a lot, at an Italian Bistro. Alison ordered seafood lasagne and a coke. I ordered salmon linguine with a cheese sauce and a pint of real ale most enjoyable and well deserved. Back to base camp for an early night. And so ends day one.
Woke to early sunshine, but by 7:30am the sun was gone, but still fine.
8:00am breakfast then onto Sedburgh, Ingleton, Settle, Gisburn, Clitheroe, Forest of Bowland and Waddington. Stopped in a pleasant village and sat outside, in the sun, at The Village Country Kitchen for tea and coffee with a homemade cheese & onion pie and steak pie.
Passed pleasantly talking to a couple at the next table, He was also a biker, and proceeded to tell us how many of his friends and family had been killed on their bikes. Not what we wanted to hear….
Heading on we came across a wedding at a small country church, where we had to stop to make another U turn, how I hate U turns, didn’t like to rev our engines too loud as the piper played his bagpipes to the newly married, silver surfers, coming out of the church. We rode passed slowly and quietly.
Heading up to Lancaster, in the wrong direction again, we stopped to check the map. Where a very good looking lad in a Merc tooted us, asking if we were lost, apparently he was a biker also and pointed us in the right direction the A683 to Kirby Londsdale. Alison fancied him, thought he was lush, I fancied the Merc.
Back to base camp, showers, and walk into town for a light evening meal.
Awoke to bright sunshine again Alison, late on parade for breakfast, forgot to set her alarm the night before. We left the hotel, about 9:30am, to Windermere on the A591 onto Ambleside, Clappersgate, Hawks Head and Coniston. Took a coffee and stop at the lovely Waterside Hotel overlooking Old Man Coniston one side and the lake the other.
Heading back on the A593, my chief navigator miss read the map again; three miles down a dirt track we ended up in a farm yard having to do yet another U turn.
Onto Wrynos Pass we began to climb Oh My God!!!!!!!!!!!! Quarter of the way up there are hundreds of cyclists, a timed race, riding two, three and four a breast. Oblivious to us.You guys and girls that have ridden Wrynos Pass and down Hard Knott Pass will know it’s narrow and slightly hair raising. Shall I say no more ……………………..
At the bottom the village Boot sat the Woolpack pub where we had a very welcoming drink and listened to some musicians having a jamming session. Very entertaining .Riding on we stopped at Ambleside for tea at the Skelwiti Hotel, having Thai fish cakes, salad and chips. Oh! Yes and pudding. Sun still shining at 7:00pm. Back to base camp, for some liquid refreshment, of the alcohol sort, and yet another early night.
Up early, breakfast eaten by 9:00am and heading home. As we left the hotel Alison went one way and I went off in the opposite direction into town. Totally lost, pulled over rang Alison, who told me to stay put and she would find me .Which she did and followed her all the way home, must pay more attention and more observation, to the route Alison takes.
Total mileage 853. Great weekend already looking forward to the next one in September.
Ruth & Alison