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      October 2010 > Moors and Coast Day Trip

Moors and Coast Day Trip

On the MoorsA good time was had by all on the recent Inntravel 'Moors and Coast' Day Trip. After a bleary-eyed start on a sunny Sunday morning - at an hour when most of us should be still be sleeping off our hangovers - the Malton contingent of our group parked-up in a near-deserted Netto car park and crossed the road to catch the big, blue Coastliner bus to start our intrepid journey.

The first port of call was Pickering, 'Gateway to the Moors', and the meeting place for the rest of the adventurers. As the morning sun beat down upon the expectant throng, excited chatter filled the air. Slugs of steaming hot tea were punctuated by bites of crispy bacon sandwiches under the ever-watchful gaze of our four-legged friends. An unwitting 'Moorsbus' volunteer became the target for a tirade of timetable-related questions as he set up shop for the day on The Ropery car park. He had never seen such a group so early on a Sunday and yet, admirably, he answered our questions and, when asked, we chorused "We're off to Whitby!"

Alison and DennisAnd so it was, with a certain degree of menace that our 11-strong crew jostled to the front of the queue. After all, we didn't want to miss the 'Rosedale Rambler'. Apart from one seat and a reserved, retired couple, the Inntravel members and accompanying menagerie filled the magic minibus which took us through vale and dale and into the heather-clad moorland. Everyone agreed it was a sight to behold.

Following a quick tour of Rosedale and its once-prominent abbey and a ‘comfort break’ at my house, we set off on our walk across the North York Moors to Egton Bridge. Like so many satisfied Inntravel customers before us, we held aloft our notes and Ordnance Survey maps, discussing directions and chewing the cud as we climbed out of the dale. Although one or two faltered, we were all rewarded with delightful views over the valley as our route soon levelled-out over the wild moorland, burnt brown by the changing seasons. It was clear that some were quicker than others and the idea that we’d all ramble along together was pure romance. No matter, as the Inntravel snake wound its way down towards the Esk Valley, the silhouette of Whitby Abbey set against the shimmering sea served as a reminder of what was to come. Walking in the UK doesn't get much better than this.

WhitbyThe steep descent into Egton came earlier for some, whilst others were still scaring away the sheep from stealing their salmon sandwiches. Needless to say, there was more than a little apprehension that our slower friends would be stranded at the station while the faster folk headed for Whitby and their fish supper. Nevertheless, we needn't have worried. Following a few frantic phone calls and a cunning deviation from the notes by Mr G, the weary and sun-scorched faces of the out-paced few lit-up further on sight of their chilled-out colleagues. That tiny stone station at Egton had doubtless never witnessed so much joy and relief amongst its precious few passengers.Once aboard the pride of Northern Rail, we had a chance to chat and reminisce about the afternoon's activities.

However, this day trip was far from over. This was simply stage three of our 'grand summer tour'. The River Esk, which we had followed down from the hills, was now just the other side of a dusty train window. Its course, through pretty green scenery and small, sleepy villages, only sought to heighten the anticipation of arriving at its end in Whitby - just in time for fish and chips. As a result, the shortest leg of the journey whizzed by in an instant.

Fish and chips in WhitbyThe little train off-loaded her somewhat sleepy travellers to the cry of seagulls and the smell of salty, sea air. What had, up to now, been a peaceful jaunt  through the countryside became a noisier affair as we joined the sun-seekers by the seaside. Some sought refuge in the local hostelries; others traipsed the historic streets, and a few went for a paddle in the frigid waters where even our furry friends feared to tread!

Sated by full portions of fish and chips, pints of 'Peculiar' and a stroll along the prom, we re-united once more for the last leg of our journey. After a tour of 'Heartbeat' country and the gaping 'Hole of Horcum', we were soon driving past Dalby Forest - despite suspicious smells emanating from the engine bay and the driver's desperate grinding through the gearbox! All too soon, our adventure was over and the first few alighted in Pickering to fond farewells and a chorus of that well-worn phrase, "We must do this again sometime".

In Pikering

Posted: 06/10/2010 14:47:00 by | with 0 comments
Filed under: UK, walking

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