Easter Monday, 1st April 2013 – 8.5 miles
Another clear, bright day. Set off north from Dufton Youth Hostel, heading for Cross Fell. We followed the Pennine Way along a stream running behind the village, with a few drifts of snow having built up. Farm tracks going steadily uphill, with new-born lambs in the fields wearing plastic macs! Not seen this before.
As we got higher, away from the farmland and the tracks, the walking got rougher, with patches of snow becoming more and more evident. We stopped for a drink by a hill stream with some remains of old mining buildings, and then headed uphill.
Out of the shelter, the wind became stronger, and there was more and more snow on the ground. It had drifted in places, filling in dips and covering dry stone walls. We walked right across the top of one.
It was a bit of a slog going uphill, with the snow getting deeper and the wind getting stronger. The snow had been blown into stranged drifts, and it was hard to imagine what the land would look like underneath it all. There were very few tracks, but we could just make out where people had walked, although these were becoming faint, and our own tracks were fading under the blown snow.
Eventually, we decided that it was such hard work walking, plus the path was getting almost impossible to discern, that it was wise to head back, and return at a later date! We turned round at a waymarker which was an arrow pointing up a blank, white hill!
At one point heading down a steep hill, it was easier to sit and slide down the snow on waterproof trousers – and more fun!
Back in the village, we saw a dog walker … the first person we had seen all day (Bank Holiday Monday!)
We had already packed the car, so we got in and drove to our next destination, further back down the Pennine Way, Langdon Beck Youth Hostel. The road across the Pennines had only reopened a few days earlier, and there were high drifts at the sides of the road.