08-Jun-2004 -- This is the first of two "International" visits that we will be doing today, there is myself, Capt. Peter and Werner Furlan.
I left home this morning at 4am for the 194 mile drive up to Morecambe to meet with Capt. Peter and Werner, arriving at their hotel at 7.45am. Our main target for the day is 54N 3W (water based point) but we can't do that until this afternoon. As a bonus I have planned to take them here for a quick extra visit.
After a fairly leisurely breakfast at the hotel (kitchen was late opening or something) we left the hotel at around 9.15am. It is a 55 mile drive to this point and knowing the terrain from my previous visit I was becoming a little concerned that we wouldn't be back in time. We were, see report on 54N 3W for how close it came though!
My in car SatNav got us directly to the village of Embsay and I then followed the lanes by memory and parked in the same car park as last time. Suitable walking gear was changed into and we set off along the Bridleway.
At a suitable point on the far side of the reservoir we struck off up hill for the steep 600 foot climb to the plateau where the point was located. Last time I was here, the ground cover was waist high Ferns and Bracken. We are 10 days short of a 2 year gap since my visit, cover is much thinner this year.
In the UK this week it has been hot (30C) and humid so I made the (foolhardy) decision to do this point wearing shorts and not jeans. Big mistake. There was a thick layer of dead leaves and stalks from last years growth - and it is very sharp. I have dozens of scratches on my legs from ankles to lower thigh to prove it.
Because it is warm and humid today it is very hazy and visibility was down to around 20 miles from the nearer 50 miles it was last time. Underfoot was much drier this time and we had no wet feet to speak of, Werner got his trainers a bit damp, but not really soaked.
Peter got to the spot first, then we all announced "we're here", unfortunately all three of us were not in the same place! Once we waited around 5 minutes and our GPS units all settled down we got closer together, until we were all standing in a 6 foot circle.
Werner planted the Austrian flag - don't worry we didn't leave it there, it is in the 54N 3W photos - and the appropriate pictures were taken. North - Pic 1, East - Pic 2, South - Pic 3, West - Pic 4. Finally some video was taken. We set off back to the car, where we met another group out walking. I hope they don't mind me saying this, but I think of them as "The Last of the Summer Wine".
The three grand gentlemen we met come up into the Yorkshire Dales every Tuesday and have walked these hills for 65 years. We inquired where they had parked. "Behind that wood over there" one of them pointed, it was about 10 miles away....
The trip back down the hill was of course much easier, we changed and set straight back off for Morecambe and our date with 54N 3W