Saturday, when Joyce traveled by road in her sandals, I went over Nine Standards Rigg. Sorry, no photographs from me, but the Nine Standards are pretty impressive: nine big cairns of unknown origin, right near the highest point of the ridge dividing Cumbria from the Yorkshire Dales. Extremely windy up at the top, and chilly, a big change from the day before, when we were wandering over lowlands under a hot sun. The way down from the Rigg was over very boggy country. When I reached a place where it was calm enough to stop I got my gaiters out of the pack and put them on, first time this trip and not a step too soon. It saved me from bringing half a pound of mud in my boots with me. Gaiters work!
Sunday the walk could be down along the River Swale, where the books agreed it was very pretty, or up among the land ravaged by the lead mining that became so much more aggressive in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. I tried for the upper route but got lost. Embarrassing, yes, but it was satisfying to find my own way, generally eastward and eventually down to the Swale, where I enjoyed the pretty alternative, through lots of hayfields, over little bridges and along paths through wetlands where something that looked like orchids towered above the burdock, five and six feet high. (Later Joyce told me there are supposed to be orchids here, so \i guess that’s what they were.)
Today, our rest day, I tried to make sense of a ten-pound telephone card I bought last week, caught up on e-mail, and walked to the old church in Grinton, across the Swale from here. Tomorrow to Richmond, with Joyce in her new boots.