Friday morning I was dragging. I knew today was going to be much shorter and easier walking than yesterday, but my body said I needed a day's rest! Unfortunately that wasn't possible. As I said earlier, the average number of days to walk this hike is 6 or 7. If you count the inevitable extras, most people will walk about 100 miles. That would mean an average of 14-16 miles a day. Not for someone my age!
A short walk across a bridge,
Over the railroad tracks,
and we were back on the trail.
Since none of the sheep appeared to have been shorn in ages,
We often saw fences like this, hanging with wool where the animals had brushed against it. It looked kind of funny--like some silly kids had TP'd the wire!
The landscape had changed drastically from the day before. No more crags with abrupt escarpments, and no more Hadrian's Wall. At least not at the start.
We walked for a long time in the Northern Ditch, and it had wildflowers growing up the sides.
The path went very close to a section of farmhouses, and the next picture shows just how close it was to some of their gardens.
If you click on the picture, you can see how the trail leads right up to the garden, jigs around the side, returns back to the left, and goes up over the stile! Nothing like having an national hiking trail in your backyard.
This fellow didn't seem to be the slightest
perturbed about us walking by his barnyard.
Goodness, I look pooped! Actually, it was going very well. Yesterday was hard, but today was much easier walking over the rolling countryside.
Here is an up-close shot of one of the hundreds of kissing-gates on the trail. They are designed to let people pass through, but not livestock. The part on the right swings back and forth. You step in, swing the door, and step out. They accomodate one person, only. They are easier on the legs than stiles, but look what you can do with a stile . . .
I took this picture, because Lanercost was where our night's B&B was, so I knew we didn't have far to go!
This was a cute little serve-yourself building with a couple of picnic tables in front, if you wanted a snack and a rest. We did!
It was not only a snack bar, but a community bulletin board which we enjoyed reading.
2 cokes, 2 granola bars, and 2 packages of ''crisps'' = 4 British pounds!
Leave your money in the dish on the counter...
Lanercost Priory, just down the road from our respite!
Ah, a welcome site. Abbey Mill Bed & Breakfast.
http://www.abbeymill-lanercost.co.uk/index.html And what a pleasant place it was. (We stayed in touch with the owners and unfortunately the next year, in 2010, they sold the B&B and moved away.We repeated our walk but in the oposite direction. We missed staying at their lovely home!)
The room was lovely,
the view out the window beautiful
but this, most of all, was an unexpected bonus--a huge soaking tub for sore muscles.
After a wonderful bath, I read in the sitting room until almost bedtime.
And so ended our 6th day of walking. No rain and no crags to climb. It was great!