Trails and trials of the writer who walks
Don’t ever be tempted to give up on Day 2, because Day 3 is a real joy of great views and easy walking. First the lovely escarpment views just out of Standedge, and then Blackstone Edge where I discovered, for the first time, an engraving on the rocks made by a visiting American in 1897. Once again, I missed the path that turns down towards the reservoir and was off-piste, tripping over tussocks and falling into hidden holes, before I even got to the White House pub.
Can’t get the hang of these shorter days and probably spent longer than was wise in the White House where the company and the beer were delightful. By 5 pm, with only 2 ½ hours of daylight left, there were tough decisions to be made. Should I camp on the moors, where I was in view of Stoodley Pike (and someone else was camping right next to it)? That option eliminated itself because I couldn’t find any water up there. Plan B: Mankinholes Youth Hostel. That option also ruled itself out. The hostel was open but fully booked with a private party. Now on Plan C with less than 1 ½ hours daylight left. The landlady at the Carriage House had told me about a campsite at Jack Bridge next to a pub called the New Delight. This was only a further 3 miles from Mankinholes, but half of them were so steep the contours were touching. Pitching in the dark again! The New Delight was indeed a delight though, with great real ales.