Tuesday, 20 March 2007

DAY 20: Alveston to Brockweir: Evening Report

Today:16.3 miles
Total so far: 309.7 miles
Percentage Completed: 18.6%


(Click map to enlarge)

I don't know why I stumped up to join the YHA: So far I have tried to get into three and have failed each time. The Lizard was shut. Street was full (Who on earth would want to go there?!) St Briavels didn't even answer the phone but left the message that it was not open for business today. Unbelievable really. No wonder the organisation is going down the tubes - they are never open!

So - with no Youth Hostel booked, I managed to get in at this super B&B, reasonably priced and two cups of tea and a seat in front of the fire on arrival. Small businesses. Backbone of the tourist industry. The Great British B&B.

This afternoon is glorious, if cold. It is wonderful to have elastic earth and leaf-mould under my boots at last, with wind rushing in the tall, ancient trees. Glancing through the trees I see the Wye snaking through its gorge, the remains of old quarries now full of wildlife.

The Dyke is hugely impressive and I push uphill to better and better viewpoints. The top of the dyke is gnarled roots and white rocks stained by thousands of walkers boots. The lower ditch is a delight of soft earth and shelter from the blasting north wind.

I have ample time to take a long break, the Wye hundreds of feet below me bright like silver in the afternoon sun. I am wearing every coat I have, and am snug, munching on a ham, cheese & pickle roll from Cuz Helen.

You don't forget afternoons like these.

1 comment:

  1. I visited White Castle a couple of years ago whilst doing Offa's Dyke. Like you, I was impressed ...

    Bill Bryson had been there a few months earlier and had described it as 'numinous' !

    Good luck with your walk ~ Charlie.


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