REETH TO RICHMOND ALONG THE SWAYLE

Here I sit in a window chair of the Central Coffee House in drizzly Northallerton, Yorkshire. A lot has happened since the last time I put pen to paper. After the torrential downpours of Saturday we woke in Reeth to another sunny morning. With Reeth at our backs we began the 14 mile journey to Richmond in Central Yorkshire.

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The path today followed the banks of the river Swayle. The grass was emerald green and the grouse were everywhere we looked. In the first little village we came to there was an unusual car lot. Of course I could have purchased a plethora of garden variety Landrovers but what caught my attention was the used Hong Kong Police armoured personnel carrier. I had a good muse over whether to add it to “the fleet”, however I could never fit it in my back pack.

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The next stop of interest was a farm that also ran a well stocked bike shop. Apparently when the Tour De France had a stage in Yorkshire in 2014 this little shop got a ton of good press.
We moved on along the path and as we strolled we discovered  a 600 year old priory that has recently been converted to an outdoor pursuits centre for wayward youth. We stayed long enough to to get a few photos of the priory then nudged on along the path. We began to climb out of the valley soon after and quickly broke free of the tree line. The sun was making things pretty toasty at that point so we broke a bead in a hurry.

Our next stop was Dianne’s farm house Cafe. You had to have your wits about you to make the right turn (left turn) in order to find this gem. Luckily we were 2 minutes behind four walkers who had clearly committed every guide book to memory and it was they  that gave us the little tip.

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5 minutes later we were sat in Dianne’s garden looking eastward down the Swayledale valley. Apple pie and ice cream (best ever according to Dale) and brandy roulades for me. Two cups of tea were drank sharpish. With batteries recharged we were up and loading  backpacks just in time to encounter Sooty the farm cat  jump up on the table to steal the remaining milk for the tea from the little jug pawfull by pawfull.

With Richmond 5 miles away it was head down time. More stunning scenery on either side of us until Richmond Castle took over as our focus. We passed by Richmond Cricket Club and slowed to watch an over or two. Then on to the town centre and our hotel for the night. The King’s Head is a Best Western Hotel and a really nice. Very old but very comfortable indeed.

With a hunger on we decided to visit the Amodola Indian Restaurant. Unreal. Great food and great service. Family run place with uncle in the kitchen and nephews up front. With a couple of “large Kingfishers” to accompany the meal we waddled out and I dragged my sorry aching carcus back to the King’s.

A hot bath and the BBC news ended our night.

Cheerio,
Mark

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