Curbar Edge with Baslow Edge in the background

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A Three Peaks Adventure

One day several years ago I took a few friends from the office to Yorkshire, to have a go at the Three Peaks. Most of them had never been to that area, and one or two were fairly inexperienced walkers.

As we left Horton-in-Ribblesdale, the day was not promising. The clouds were low and it was raining sufficiently hard for us to wear our cagoules and put the hoods up. By the time we reached the summit of Pen-y-ghent, the rain had stopped, but it was still cloudy and windy. A few hours later, on the summit of Whernside, the sun had appeared, and a photo in my collection tells me it was now warm enough for everyone to be in shirtsleeves.

Approaching Ingleborough, I was feeling a bit weary, so I had a Mars bar fix. It must have kicked in as I neared the top of the steep climb - everyone else was sitting down for a breather, but I felt like my feet had wings, and I shot past them all the way to the top. When I reached the final summit, the day was perfect. The sun was low, giving that majestic, late-afternoon glow to the Dales.

In the distance were the Lakeland hills; Morecambe Bay was visible. I just wanted to fall to my knees in thankfulness - but the others were coming up by then. We staggered down under a cloudless blue sky with a beautiful rosy sunset, through the limestone pavements, making it back to Horton with about half an hour to spare. The next priority was a very well-earned pint of good Yorkshire brew!

All in all, I think, one of the best day's walking I've ever had.

Written by Peter Royle, 2003

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