Our walk today is a short half day, and we are at a loose end. There really isn’t anything to detain us in Grosmont. There’s nothing in Littlebeck. And there’s no diversion en route. The weather isn’t good enough for sitting about either. We go down to the station for another look around, and find that its possible to get a train in 10 minutes, which will give us 2 hours in Whitby and arrive back leaving plenty of time for our short walk. Decision made.
We therefore desert the trail for a joyride to Whitby. In Whitby station (one working platform) the train schedule is designated as ‘Steam’ or ‘Diesel’. It really is an integrated service. The steam trains are huge, though, while the diesels are the more usual one or two carriage affairs.
In the town it is freezing, with a cold, cold wind blowing. Just like last time we were here, although that was the end of October. We do the tourist hotspots. The Abbey (more than one school trip is here today). The harbour. Into the town for lunch via the market square. You can see the Whalebone Arch up on the hill, as we cross over the river to explore the other half of the town. A quick circuit of the North Town, then back on the train to Grosmont. Not a bad diversion into civilisation.
By the time we restart our walk, the weather has improved a little. We watch the trains pull out, then begin the quite hard 700’ ascent out of the village onto, you’ve guessed it, more moors. We climb onto Sleights Moor, pausing briefly at the Bride Stones.
As we cross over into the next valley we can see Whitby Abbey in the distance. Odd to think we were there a few hours ago. The marvels of modern transport!!
Meanwhile, as we descend to Littlebeck, our feet carry us back into summer. The lane is sheltered and warm, and full of Meadowsweet and Honeysuckle.
The tiny little village, at the bottom of a steep sided valley, has a Woodcarvers Cottage, a Kelp House and a Methodist Chapel. There is a pretty bridge across the stream.
We carry on uphill to Intake Farm, our bed for the night. As contrasts go, this couldn’t be more of the opposite to last night than it is. We have a really warm welcome into the farmhouse kitchen, where the Australians are already installed. Tea and homemade cake is swiftly thrust upon us. Our room is warm, sunny and cosy. Looks like it was a child’s room.
We later have an evening meal all together. Ten guests squeezed around a huge table. Two of them are elderly Yorkshire folk of a type I would have thought no longer in existence. She with grey permed hair, twin set and pearls. He of the cap and jumper persuasion, although he couldn’t have been wearing his cap at the table. They were very proud of Yorkshire, and not at all intimidated by so many walkers. We all helped to clear away afterwards. The farmers, being religious, we had no alcohol and an early night. But after last night it was great.