Dales High Way – Day 1

Monday 23 June 2014. I had a steady drive up to Harrogate for Sunday lunch with my brother & sister-in-law before getting a lift across to Shipley in preparation for today’s 8 mile walk from Saltaire to Ilkley. The Abbey Lodge hotel in Shipley was ok but I had a small dark room with a large screen tv. I’d rather have had bigger room and smaller tv. Breakfast was ok.Despite a leisurely start to the day, I found myself killing time until Salts Mill opened at 10.00. I’d soon seen enough and was off walking the DHW by 10.30. It was already hot and the shade offered in Shipley Glen came as a welcome relief. Aftet 2 hours walking and 4.25 miles, I stopped for lunch (an apple) as I entered Hawksworth Moor. There were constant calls of Curlew and just above Ilkley I heard a Cuckoo. The next 3 miles took me across a wide expanse of moorland before dropping down into Ilkley. There were some great views from up here and, for the first time, I saw some other walkers.
Arriving in Ilkley at just after 14.30, I was too early to pitch up at my B&B, so I went for a late pub lunch and a couple of pints to replenish the fluid lost on the walk. I ran out of water long before reaching Ilkley and will need to carry more on tomorrow’s longer walk.
Day 1 was good and I’ll have no complaints if I get more sunny weather.

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