2 friends and the coast to coast walk


Ingleby Cross to Clay Bank Top by gleavem
October 22, 2008, 12:12 pm
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Which way

Awoke today ready for the hills ahead; our legs and feet were still a little tired after yesterday’s slog, but nevertheless we couldn’t wait to get going again!  As we kitted up we were shocked to realise the state of Sid’s boots, he had holes in the top and the soles were very cracked…I guess the long hard miles took their toll!  The day started in the woods where we quickly joined the Cleveland Way which we were to follow until Clay Bank Top, so we weren’t anticipating too many navigational challenges!

The state of my boots

It was a very undulating route, with pleasant views, good stone paths and lovely weather!  We saw loads of other walkers, mostly those doing the Cleveland Way, but also some more casual walkers.  The only bad aspect of the day were the flies, or more accurately the flying ants!  All along the stone paths they were emerging from between the cracks, tempted out by the warm, muggy air.  There was a lot of arm flailing and a bit of moaning, but we survived.  We stopped for a drink and to nibble on some of our lunch in the busy cafe at Carlton Bank.  It was a really interesting walk, lots of little summits and heathery landscapes, the Wainstones (which I had great fine scrambling over), views of Middlesbrough and an interesting looking hill. We could see this interestingly shaped hill for much of the day, and it struck me as one I’d really like to climb, little did I know it’s already rather famous and is in fact Roseberry Topping; definitely one to add to the “to do” list.

The Summit near the gliding club Michelle atop the Wain Stones

We arrived at Maltkiln Houseto find it a lovely, cosy, quaint B&B with very accommodating hosts (more on them later).  After our usual showers we took to the lounge for tea, biscuits, a rest and to meet our fellow guests.  We had met Moira and Fred from Ireland on the path earlier on in the day, so were expecting to see them again.  Moira had had particular difficulty around the Wainstones as she had terrible vertigo and it took all of Fred’s encouragement to keep her heading onwards.  The other guests were Roberta and Peter from Canada; all four of them were doing the Cleveland Way, though in rather different ways.  Roberta and Peter were taking it day by day, not booking or planning much ahead, doing each stage but not necessarily in the normal order!  Fred and Moira were taking a more traditional approach.

Dinner was an interesting affair; there’s not much choice but to eat at Maltkiln as there’s not really another eatery around!  Wendy left us chatting in the lounge until dinner time and then we all went down to the dining room.  It was like a rather strange dinner party, with three couples who didn’t know each other at all!  Once we were seated, and drinks had been poured, Wendy said…

“And now Gerry’s going to give you a little talk about jet”

We all looked at each other and shrugged, more than a little puzzled.  Gerry then proceeded to give us a little lesson on the history of jet, jet mining, jet shaping, jet jewellery and Queen Victoria, whilst pieces of jet in various stages of manipulation were passed round…it was a very interesting talk and Gerry is obviously a very passionate and talkative man.  I think he felt his speech was cut short when Wendy returned with our starters (lentil soup); I asked if there would be more lessons between the other courses, but alas no.  Wendy’s home made fare (chicken stew followed by cheesecake) came as a pleasant relief from all the pub food we’d been eating on the walk, and we all chattered away over the dinner table until bedtime.  This was definitely one of our more interesting B&Bs, we retired well fed and satisfied with a good days walking, ready for the penultimate stage the following day.

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