Walk completed August 28, 2011

Friday, July 15, 2011

Day 45 – Cowling to Malham – 19 miles

I’ve arrived in the Yorkshire Dales, an area in middle England characterized by beautiful rolling hills and more greenery than you can imagine. Drystone walls are everywhere, and beautifully arched stone bridges cross the many wooded streams. This is a delightful area, and the walking is easy.

Pete and I walked together most of the day until he reached his destination of Gargreave, 12 miles from Cowling.
The day had started out quite warm, and got progressively warmer. The map showed that our route would take us through several villages, so I decided to reduce the weight of my pack by cutting down on the quantity of water I carried. As the day wore on and the temperature rose, I became increasingly concerned that I may not have enough water.

The first village we reached was Lothersdale. It was still too early for the pub to be open, and the village had no market. I still had sufficient water to get me to the next village, so I was OK. Ironically, Lothersdale may not have had sufficient water.

On a small hill above Lothersdale, Pete and I encountered Rob, who was repairing piping from the spring, the village’s source of water. One man, working with his hands and a shovel was restoring water service to the village. I tried to contemplate how many men, machines, work orders, and reports would be required to restore interrupted water service to my hometown.

The next town Pete and I passed through was Thornton-in-Craven. It appeared to be of reasonable size and prosperity, with expensive homes, but not one pub or market to buy a drink. The day was getting hotter, and my water supply was diminishing.

After another mile and a half, we reached the tiny village of East Marton. East Marton sits alongside the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, another route for vacationing narrowboaters. We found a small café, where I quickly downed two soft drinks. My remaining water would now get me to Gargreave, where I would definitely find a convenience store.

At Gargreave, I bought two sport drinks, and drank one immediately as Pete and I sat in a shady park to get out of the sun. I held one drink in reserve, to get me the seven more miles to Malham. Pete and I said our goodbyes, and I left for Malham. He and I will both be walking the rest of the Pennine Way over the next two weeks, but we are unlikely to see each other, as I will be about a half-day ahead of him. 

On the moor
As I was leaving Gargreave to walk the additional 7 miles to Malham, I was waved down by James, who was just finishing tea in Gargreave. James, too, was walking to Malham, and he and I walked there together.  Now that I was no longer concerned about water, the weather gods changed the rules. The sky clouded over and the temperature dropped as James and I left Gargreave. When we got within a mile of Malham, a heavy downpour was imminent. Once again, I was concerned about water, but for a very different reason. James and I moved along swiftly and we arrived in Malham only minutes before the rain started.

The forecast is for heavy rains tomorrow, but at least for tonight my clothes will be dry.

© 2011 Ken Klug


  1. You are just flying through the countryside! Hope the skies clear up for you tomorrow.

  2. Still enjoying reading your daily accounts. It'll be interesting getting some feedback on the Pennine Way as I'm planning to walk it next year. Promise you won't ware it out!!!