IMG_2585Time to get out the map and plan a weekend adventure.

Weekend weather looks mixed.

Plan A is arranged with a plan B & C as back up.

IMG_2552We left Riders Cycle Centre at 9am. The patchwork blue sky soon filled with menacing grey clouds and the wind brought forth squally showers. As we descended into Settle we raced against the next wall of rain flowing between the valleys but the road ride to Tosside and lunch in Slaidburn had the sun warming our backs. Typical indecisive British weather.

We headed along Salter Fell road. 3 abreast we chatted and snacked on Snickers bars. The next summit brought forth our first memorable vista. The Lakes, the Howgills and the Three peaks to our left. Beautiful.

Simon said his goodbyes as we entered Wray. Iain and I headed north and onto Kirkby Lonsdale and Sedbergh. The quiet lanes allowed us the time to appreciate our surroundings. The recent rain and warm spell had given Summer a jump start and the green fields full of hares and the gliding buzzards has us wondering over the road as we turned to catch the last glimpse.

The calf burning walk up onto the Calf had us giggling at the ridiculous gradient as our spd cycling shoes fought for grip up the grass slope, but once again the summit brought yet again another fantastic view.

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 The testing descent back to civilisation required a different skill set and our balance and line choice down the valley needed to be spot on. Muddy bogs full of frog spawn and sharp edged boulders made for tough going and the meandering valley with the trail scar forever laid before us tested the last of our reserves but we conquered the trail. High fives all round.

The Hostel in Kirkby Stepkens run by Denise was our room for the night. A hot shower and clean cloths adorned aching bodies and the local curry house fed two hungry customers.

A good nights sleep brought forth day 2.

Gone was the patchwork sky. Replaced with dark drizzle filled gloom. Thick saturating drizzle forced into every crevice by a force 8 gale either hitting us in the face or lashing our left ear.

As we made our way through Outhgill and towards the Pennine Bridleway my CTC trained head began to implement plan B. Keep off the Moor. High ground would be risky. The gale had reduced us to 5mph in some sections and the rain had saturated our bones. We continued on to the Moorcock Inn. 12 miles in almost 2 hrs. We had another 40 to go. Plan C was put into action and as we sat in the waiting room at Garsdale train station with puddles forming around our feet, chattering teeth uttered words of frustration and mutual support to our failed second day.

It was a weekend of two halves. Our planned route on Gpies.

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