If you've ever thought walking was easy maybe you should try the coast to coast walk made famous by Alfred Wainwright in his book 'A Coast to Coast Walk'. Thousands of walkers set out every year to cross the UK between St Bees on the Cumbrian coast and Robin Hood's Bay, on the Yorkshire coast. Its a walk of some 190 miles, and although the book does not mention it, for the inexperienced walker it is a gruelling trek through some of the wildest, mountainous countryside England has to offer. Not everyone make's it !
Wainwright recommends taking the west-east direction (with the prevailing wind behind you), and it was indeed from the west that my wife, Catherine and I set out on September 13th, 1998. We aimed to finish the walk in 12 days. 8 days is achievable for an experienced walker and 3 weeks is common for those with more time to enjoy what the countryside has to offer. We hadn't done any hiking at all before, although we are both reasonably fit.
In our packs we carried all we would need for the trip. Including a day's water each pack weighed 10 kilogrammes.
Click the section on the map to see our story. For each stage I supply my comment about that stage, including my favourite highlights and any particular problems I would have liked to know about before setting out !
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Copyright © 2000 Tim Reeves