Saturday, 6 September 2008

Friday 5th September - Garrigill to Sinderhope

Quite a chilly night but we woke to a still morning but all too soon the midges came out to feed on us. I managed to eat breakfast before they located me but drank coffee and packed up with a mozzy net over my head.

We called at the post office/shop in Garrigill, clearly in danger of closure. Once the present owners give up it will finish.

It came on to rain as we left so it was on with the waterproofs. It was a steep climb out of Garrigill and on a rural road over the top for a few miles down into Nenthead. We called in at the Nenthead Mines Heritage Centre (lead mining) where there was a cafe. Stoked up with a cheese toasty and a pot of tea. We stayed quite a while but the rain didn't let up.

The rest of the day was spent partly walking on minor roads and partly over waterlogged moorland, heading in the direction of Hexham which we should reach tomorrow. The rain just continued to come down. It was not nice.

We had hoped to camp on some access land before the moorland ended but nowhere was suitable and it was too exposed to the elements. We came to the River Allen and crossed a bridge next to a ford near Sinderhope. We found a reaonable pitch next to the river. Behind us was a belt of trees behind which was a largish house with half a dozen or so Discoveries and similar vehicles outside. An upmarket fishing party perhaps. We kept a low profile and were not disturbed.

However, we were concerned at the rate the river level was rising as it rushed by only feet away. It rose about two feet in the space of two hours which was quite alarming. It was gone six o'clock but we made what in retrospect was a wise decision to move on. By the time we left, the river was lapping the edge of the bank and, further along, where we had accessed the riverside, the path was under water.

We are now pitched in a secluded spot out of sight. It's still raining and the forecast is for much more tomorrow - lovely.


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