Speaking to Malc Christie on the phone last week, I told him thast I fancied doing something but not too ambitious as I was seeing the physio on Friday about my niggling knee problem. I suggested that stroll around the Yorkshire 3 Peaks may be possible. What does he say - I'm up for that and Adam Chritchley is keen is get something done to begin the lead up to the Spine.
He then goes on to suggest we start at Malham Tarn! Malham Tarn, I say, where are we going park? Malham, says he. Malc you are a ...............! First you say Malham Tarn, now it's Malham itself. Let me do a quick distance measurement. Counting grid lines I came up with round trip of 21 miles, plus the 3 Peaks route, so around 45 miles. We can always cut it short he says if your knee plays up too much.
After a bit of thought, ok, we'll give it a go, i said.
He and Adam picked me up at 6am Saturday morning, we headed for Malham and set off at 7.30am.
Much chatter and a slowish first several miles. We met Matt Green, the Spine photographer and film maker on the Malham Cove steps. he had been filming base Jumpers on the cove.
Joined the 3 Peaks route below Pen Y Ghent. The pace began to quicken.
The drop off Whernside saw me in much pain during the descent, but it eased on the flat. Malc and Adam drew away from me on the ascent to Ingleborough. This set the pattern, on every ascent and descent there after they would open up a gap. Adam had no choice but to stay with Malc as he forgotten to bring his headtorch,
I made an error and we followed the wrong track which put some distance from our route, However good map, compass and gps practise got us back on track eventually.
After Horton and the climb back to the gate below Pen Y Ghent, we left the Peaks route and made our way back over Fountains Fell to Malham, where we arrived after 17 hours and 48.6 miles,according to Adams GPS and watch, with a moving time of 15 hours 50 minutes, and average pace of 2.8mph, with 7,700 feet of ascent and descent.
A good time and great first distance walk of the year.