Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Wakefield to Dewsbury 25/10/14

This time last year I had just about run out of energy and was trying to keep the season going when my body was feeling extremely reluctant to keep going, and it's a good feeling to find that twelve months on my demeanour is feeling much more resolute and my body feels like there are still many more miles to be put down this season. A change in the weather helps, and after glum days and general exhaustion taking hold in September, the weekends of October have felt much more amenable to being out of doors, and with the joys of Autumn in the air, I finally look towards that major architectural feature that has cropped up again and again on my travels without me ever getting that near to it, and if the day is only going to be a relatively short stroll once again, I'm going to find plenty to see as I fill in another gap on the map and make a significant trip between Wakefield district and Kirklees for the very first time. (A deeply trainspotterish thing to note along the way is on riding out to Wakefield Westgate, I think that on all my travels, I have now ridden on every type of rail unit that serves the lines of West Yorkshire, the class 322 EMU being the only one not previously encountered, and whilst that has nothing to do with my walking exploits, it shows that a small part of my youthful brain is still active.)

Wakefield to Dewsbury, via Lupset & Ossett  9.3 miles

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Woodlesford to Wakefield 18/10/14

If you cast your minds all the way back to the start of this year's walking season in February, you might recall that my trip from Morley to Wakefield took in a section of the old route of the Leeds Country Way, between West Ardsley and Alverthorpe, and so another section must remain of the 1980s route, unwalked to the east, discarded when the route was sensibly re-directed entirely with Leeds district. Helpfully, this section between Fleet Bridge and Alverthorpe doesn't come into too much contact with tracks already walked in the Leeds - Wakefield hinterland, and I need a reason to stroll in this quarter after spending so many weeks in the grip of Kirklees. Also, if you recall this time last year I was owing Kirklees an apology for having neglected it so badly in 2013, and now I find myself owing an apology to Wakefield for letting it drop from my schedule so comprehensively in 2014, especially as we got out to such a good start before it only made one appearance in the second half of the year, I guess that the Wakefield Way and this land of coal and agriculture will have to wait until 2015, it's good to have something to look forward to, I guess.

Woodlesford to Wakefield, via Bottom Boat & Stanley  10.5 miles

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Huddersfield to Halifax 12/10/14

I'm not going to ruminate on running out of steam as my third walking season runs into Autumn, that would involve even more writing when my enthusiasm for this blog is already at an all time low, so let's just admit that once October rolled around, I was desperate for a weekend off to have a couple of long mornings in bed and to look forwards to running down the season with some more modest exploits. That means there will be no attempt on Black Hill this year, and a late season jaunt to Mallerstang shifts to the improbable side of unlikely, and filling in the blanks on the map starts to look like the plan for the remainder of the year, as once the three years of lines have been overlaid on Google Maps, there are still a few distinct holes where my feet have failed to fall. So after the third celebration of a 40th Birthday this year, for my best friend IH whose distaste for birthdays is unmatched among all the people I know, has gone by on the Friday evening (Thai food and Ales in Hebden Bridge, if you are wondering), I've still got most a weekend to use, and going out for a Sunday morning exercise seems to be the best course, and to make a return trip to Calderdale after claiming that I would only make it out there the one time, and the plan for the day is Colne to Hebble, or out through the north of Huddersfield, and into Halifax from the south, both routes which I have not taken on my travels around the county.

Huddersfield to Halifax, via Lindley, West Vale and the Halifax Arm.  10.4 miles