Saturday, August 26, 2006

Dufton to Cross Fell, take 2

false start revisited
silence still there
sombre mood
both able to start the earliest so far
810am departure
down narrow lanes, many stiles, again
cows come to say hello today
across our path
they bow their heads and reverse
meeting stile queens
tentatively moving through
horizontal backs
dense bones and soft brown eyes
trees reappear
the grove of silence, and now a place to pee
the wide stride of the New Zealand man
leads us through a field of cows
we are too slow
he leaves, his strides stretching the distance between us
up into the clouds
quickly, steep ascent, dig toes into each bit of the hill
knock old man, then the heights, into the greyness
that envelops us
what is a currick?
up and over to Great Dun Fell
a single tarmac track, one car in and one car out
compass points at a golf ball
the hum of its presence
military radar, we don't know
but not good for our navigation on the ground
slightest of foot track develops into a flagged path
up and down and up and down
to Little Dun Fell
small flat top putting green
no visibility
picking through cairns
its a long haul
Cross Fell Summit at 1.50pm
the highest point on the way
the views are grey
stones and cairns, the shelter, the trig point
the foreground
no defined shapes or markers
a large putting green on the top of the land

down, you could be walking anywhere
rim of the cloud
river valley all the way to nearly zero degrees
in breath
moving from one world to another in the blink of an eye
sun, blue skies
to the right
there it is, Gregg's Hut
a cheer in unison
we see the New Zealand strider in the distance
we are sleeping here
the highest place you can
a warm welcome from a familiar friend
travellers passing through with tales
and other bothy users wanting to take our fuel
but there ain't much here
they offer us an invitation to their party down in the valley
if we walk down a spur, there is no path
missing the brightly coloured grass - indicate entraces to mines
we tell them we're having our own saturday night disco
the other party goers arrive - Adam and Paddy
early tea
scavenging for coal and there is some on the ground
you can see your breath
its going to be cold
summer sleeping bags, again
which we had in january - although that was not appropriate
slag heaps become launch pads to the stars
we dance for the sky and the valley below and the mist
that creeps down behind us
we light everything burnable
disco lights are a flicker of a flame
an orange horizon to the east
a city on the coast
where I live
its a full clear sky
i can see the milky way


Blogger David said...

Good luck for the final day.
Hope you enjoy it. I'll be in touch about the Songs of Travel.
Hope you saw the signs I left.

10:14 am  

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