Gargrave to Malham. A short day today.

Miles: 8.2

Elevation gain: 1244 ft

We felt lucky to sleep in a bit today after the long haul yesterday. It was a short 8 mile day that we wrapped up by 2pm. By dinner time I was feeling like I missed something. But a bath, some hot tea and a comfy bed is pretty decent for the evening. We walked to a small village called Malham. We’re at the base of Malham Cove which is part of tomorrow’s walk. Parts of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallow were filmed there. Also parts of The Witcher.

Today was green fields and more green fields. Cloudy skies but no rain. Also more cows than sheep. Makes for delicious Yorkshire butter!

Look at those butter swirls! We stopped at a Farm Shop and has some tea cake with butter and rosebud jam.
Distinguished part of Pennines.
“Cross field through stile at far end. Cross meadow. Repeat.”

When I planned this trip, I figured that today would be a “migraine day.” It always happens. When the stress of daily life starts to let go, then my body responds with a migraine. I have planned remedy and figured I could continue on just fine if I timed my meds correctly.

But no migraines. Not even a second of a headache since we’ve been out. What I believe I did not account for a focus on the present moment. I cannot have stress on this adventure — it takes focus and energy and care in the present moment to keep walking. The terrain is rough. The wind is cold. It is long. And this is a gift.

Today as we walked, we talked about anxiety. How we were in the middle of we had no idea where. Not another person in sight, but there is calm. It’s a bit corny, but it settles the mind and amazingly keeps the body from hurting. I think it’s true.

When we started walking, our pace on the first day was about 30 min mile. It didn’t seem slow, but compared to what we walked at home, it was very slow. The ground was unfamiliar and our packs were a bit heavy. Each day our pace has picked up. We’ve become more sure footed. Our packs are just as heavy. We are just lighter.

Makes me feel a bit melancholy that tomorrow is our last day.

Back to life. Back to reality. But not quite yet.

And then we rested.

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