Day 12 - September 13th 2004

Dufton - Layover Day


Last night I went right off to sleep but woke up soon after and could not get back to sleep for quite some time as my feet hurt so much. I finally drifted off, waking at 7:30 in time for breakfast. This was a pretty relaxing day with breakfast shared with some long distance bike riders. One of them, who had never walked the Way but knew of it, gave me a personal rallying cry I used in the days ahead. When he heard I was walking the Way, he commented “The Pennine Way is hard.” From then on, if there was ever a really rough patch, and there were several, I would say “The Pennine Way is hard.” It always got a chuckle from Brian and Steve, a walker we met in Alston who was also walking the Way and with whom we shared the last five days.

This layover day consisted of a trip to Penrith where we checked out a nice bookstore and had a very good Indian lunch. I saved a bit of my chicken tikka for a sandwich filler for the morrow. On the return to our B&B, it was a one and a half hour nap, trying to catch up from the lack of sleep last night plus the energy loss in my trek “over the top.” We ran into Brian and his family in the afternoon as Connie and I set out to see if we could find the start of tomorrow’s walk. It was very good to see him and to meet Elizabeth, his wife, Jon, his son and Jane, Jon’s partner. Dinner was at the Stag and the food was OK. Unfortunately, the pub was out of Black Sheep so I had to make do with Boddingtons, a poor substitute. As we left the pub, I could see quite a few stars out. I hoped that was a good omen for tomorrow’s climb over Cross Fell. 

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