The Leaders for the day were Don Parkin: Anthea McAllister: Allan Clarke: Kirsteen & Lynn.
I led the C group out into a brilliant but cold morning as we set off across snow laden fells once again. Views of the Ribblehead Viaduct, Ingleborough and Whernside were stunning but were soon lost in the snow filled cloud cover that beset all the groups. White out would test the navigation skills of all the leaders for a good hour or so but a slow and considered approach won the day, with some great views once out on the tops. The sunlit, snow covered peaks and the warm russet brown colours of the lower slopes made picture perfect scenes during what was to be a great ridge walk.
Setting off in brilliant sunshine, we headed West along the Ribble Way, passing Gavel Gap, the source of the River Ribble. From here, we climbed out to meet the Roman Road at Cold Keld Gate where the sun made a brief but welcome appearance. Up until that point it had been difficult to make out the footpath with only the lack of tufts of grass to give a clue as to where it was. Slowly the cloud cleared and the snow stopped as we came to the foot of Dodd Fell Hill. The path became a bridleway and the going was a lot easier with some great views of the Snaizholme valley. We picked up the Pennine Way at Ten End and continued along the ridge looking out over Sleddale before our rather muddy descent into Gayle. A visit to Hawes wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the home of Wednesleydale cheese and many of our group made a detour to the Creamery Cafe.
Our four new walkers seemed to have a good day with us and hopefully will be with us again. We made a welcome return for a fabulous meal at a much improved Longlands Hotel at Tewitfield which rounded off another fine day of walking.