Coast to Coast Path, 3rd (British Walking Guides)

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9781905864096: Coast to Coast Path, 3rd (British Walking Guides)
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Fully revised third edition of this classic 191-mile walk across northern England from the Irish Sea to the North Sea, inspired by Alfred Wainwright. Crossing three fabulous national parks – the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales, and the North York Moors – it samples the very best of the English countryside – rugged mountains and lakes, gentle dales and stone-built villages; wild moorland; sea cliffs and fishing villages.

 

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About the Author:

Henry Stedman is a hiker of considerable experience, having trekked in many parts of Europe, Asia and Africa. He has been writing guidebooks for more than a decade.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Introduction

The Coast to Coast path runs between St Bees on the Irish Sea coast and Robin Hood’s Bay on England’s north-eastern shore. It was devised in the early 1970s by the legendary fell walker, guidebook writer and illustrator, Alfred Wainwright. At first glance it doesn’t appear to be anything special. At 191-1/2 miles (307km) it is not the longest path in the country and certainly doesn’t, as some people mistakenly think, span England at its widest point. It makes no claim to being technically demanding or especially tough either (though we can safely predict that those who attempt it will find it sufficiently challenging, and I’ve been told by several American Coast to Coast veterans to make it clear that this is a trek, or a hike, and not a mere walk). Nor does it, unlike the long-distance paths that run alongside Hadrian’s Wall or Offa’s Dyke, follow any ancient construction or border. In fact, it’s not even an official National Trail.

            In truth, the Coast to Coast is but one route out of an infinite number that could be devised by joining the various footpaths and byways to form a single, unbroken route across England. It’s just a testing, long-distance path from one side of northern England to another that provides those who complete it with a quick snapshot of the country.

            But what a snapshot that is! Around two-thirds of the walk are spent in the national parks of the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the North Yorkshire Moors. These parks encompass some of the most dramatic scenery in the country, from its highest fells to its largest lakes, its most beautiful woods and its bleakest, barest moors. The walk also passes through areas alive with some of Britain’s rarest wildlife, including red squirrels and otters, and even skirts around the eyrie of England’s only golden eagle.

            Furthermore, where man has settled on the trail he has, on the whole, worked in perfect harmony with nature to produce some of England’s finest villages, from elegant Grasmere to exquisite, refined Egton Bridge. The trail itself is a further example of the harmony between man and nature. The paths and bridleways that make up the trail have existed for centuries and as such, though man-made, do not feel or look like an imposition on the landscape but are very much part of it. It is a subtle distinction, and an important one.

            While these paths and villages continue to thrive, in other places where man once lived and worked, nature has been allowed to reclaim the upper hand yet again: the poignant, overgrown ruins of mills and mines, of ancient Iron Age villages and mysterious stone circles are all silent witnesses to a bygone age. They punctuate the path and provide absorbing highlights along the way.

            All this, and all within a trail that takes around a fortnight to complete. It’s true that the Coast to Coast may not be the longest, most difficult or most recognized of long-distance trails in England. But few, if any, can match it for beauty or splendour.

 

About this book

This guidebook contains all the information you need. The hard work has been done for you so you can plan your trip from home without the usual pile of books, maps, guides and tourist brochures. It includes:

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    When you’re all packed and ready to go, there’s comprehensive public transport information to get you to and from the Coast to Coast path and 109 detailed maps and town plans to help you find your way along it. The route guide section includes:

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