DATE                                10.12.06

DISTANCE                       5.89 MILES

WEATHER                      BRIGHT BUT COOL



Finally the weather had turned, the wet grey miserable days that we had been having all week had finally  passed and I was greeted by a clear blue sky when I opened the bedroom curtains and peered out , I straight away thought about getting out for a wander …well it would be a crime not to make the most of the weather , I casually informed my better half that it was a great day and suggested that she got her festering arse out of bed and we could get out someplace in the hills  , I have to be honest here and say her reply wasn’t what I hoped to hear ..But she is a bit of a grump in the morning so I chose to ignore the name she called me and headed off downstairs to see about breakfast, sure enough after a few minutes she staggered into the kitchen and over breakfast we talked about getting out.

After all the rain that had been falling for the last week I knew that the hills would be soaking .but I really needed to get out into the National Park and just take it all in and recharge myself just a little bit . the other problem was somehow due to a moment of carelessness I had managed to reopen an old wound near the top of my stump  right where the socket rubs and it wasn’t anything to get concerned about it was rather sore and painful, so before we anywhere I had to resort to the old system of cutting a patch of compression foam to cover the poorly area then covering the whole thing with a tegaderm plaster then slapping a layer of cream all over the area , it didn’t take long to do but it was a bit of a reminder to take more care of myself , it seemed like ages since I had to do this but just goes to show it only takes a few minutes of carelessness and its back to square one again .

After much talking we decided that we would head up to Clennell and have a low level wander along the Alwin valley along to Kidland forest , there is a very good stone road to walk along which I call rightly or wrongly the “Red road” basically because it is red with the stone coming from the local quarry at Biddlestone . and that was that Gear was sorted, coffee was made and thrown into a flask and off we went with just a quick stop at the sarnie shop for our normal “Sarnies”, if all went well we would be calling in the Clennell Hotel at the end of the walk for a nice cup of Coffee and dare I say it a glass of wine or two for Yvonne (she does like her wine and can get quite grumpy when she doesn’t have any). And of course there was a good chance that there might be a slice of tasty cake thrown in as well.

It didn’t take that long to drive up and we were both pleased that the weather stayed the same, clear blue skies, yes it was a bit on the cool side but nothing to get concerned about.

Parking was just off road, gear was sorted and off we went, no distance just a wander along the valley into the forest and back again, I simply love it up here and have spent a lot of time up in this valley when I first started to walk again, off course I still wasn’t up to much with regards to speed distance etc. etc…….. but let’s not go into that again I was still in a steep learning curve even two years after my amputation , no let’s just have a good walk and forget about what could or should have been ..Just enjoy the day.

Gear and boots was sorted and thrown on and we were off, I was planning on doing this walk without the use of my hiking poles in my never ending quest to build up my core strength  but as always I would have them tucked away on my ruck sack “just in case” our route was simplicity its self a wander along the river Alwin into Kidland forest then at some point turn around and head back, off course we might follow the river or walk along the track all depending on what we felt like, the weather was amazing bright warm sunlight in places and dark cold icy places where the sun didn’t reach which all added to the magical feel of the walk , but what we both noticed today was the amount of Herons that where about , I always thought that each Heron had its own area or section of the river and didn’t mix that well (apart from breeding season) but we must have seen at least six different Herons all along a couple of miles of the river (no we didn’t count the same one more than once) why this was happening  I haven’t got a clue , but we snapped away with the camera like we had never seen one in our lives before , we walked about 5.98 miles all easy and very relaxing which is what today was all about , the is something special about this valley and the surrounding hills and once again I found myself promising that one day I would walk all these hills and fells ( note from today 2015 it took a few years but yes I finally did them all and loved every minute of it ).

After the walk we both piled into the bar at the Clennell hotel where I treated us both to coffee and cake …well wine and cake for Yvonne ………..and I got to drive home .

A few photos from today:

Taken from where we parked the car looking along the valley


Looking towards the farm house at Clennell


Yvonne all wrapped up against the cold


Me heading off along the “red road”




Looking at the river Alwin


Looking at the side of Clennell hill


Yvonne having a pose


The river Alwin looking very clear and blue under this sky


And flowing quite fast


Now in the shade and it’s a lot cooler


Who is that good looking chap?


Looking between the hills at a path that will take us to Rookland (one for another day)


One of the many burns that run into the Alwin


Looking at the start of Kidland forest


Looking at the side of the “Dodd”


About to enter the forest looking towards Kitty’s Crag


Looking back


Another heron


For a while we cut down and walk along the river


But it looks as if the path just disappears


A bit further along and no path time to get back onto the forestry track I think


Back on the track looking back at Kitty’s Crags


Still following the river


Looking up (don’t know this hills name)


Now on our way back it’s quite cold in the shade in the forest


A bit further along


Rock where they must have cut through when they made the track


At the edge of the forest time for a sit down


Looking down the valley


Should I have pushed her?

A very happy girl


Looking up at the Dodd



A bit closer


Further downstream we see yet another one


And a few hundred meters away yet another one!


Looking at where the sun shines


Looking where it doesn’t …what a difference it’s like two different days


Nearly back at the car looking back


Looking up at Clennell Hill in the sun


Back at the car last look back


Day after thoughts

Not a great deal to write about , the stuff I put on my sore patch seemed to work and I didn’t have any real bother with either rubbing or soreness during the walk , but it did take nearly a week to “dry up” and heal again so this is something I will have to watch for in future. My better half did have to remind me quite a few times to stop leaning to one side and hold my arm in and lift my shoulder up a bit but it was more on the return leg...I suppose it’s as I start to get tired but still it’s an improvement, and I had a great day out so all in all I shall mark this down as a success.