Article in the Guardian.
Thanks for confirming this, its been on the cards now for a few years. The main problems were crossing the summit of Dent G/LD-045, which is privately ownded access land, not a public right of way as such. The other big issue was one of safety, crossing the A19 in North Yorkshire, a dual carriageway.
It will be interest to see what measures have been put in place to overcome these two perceived obstacles.
73 Phil G4OBK (Wainwright Society Member)
I completed the walk many years ago and the only scary bit of the walk was crossing the A19. It takes a surprisingly large amount of time to cross what was 4 lanes in each direction after a long days walk with a full pack with a vehicle approaching at 70 mph……
I’ve not got access to a big screen but with some detours from the route there should be a few sota summits on the route!
Yes Paul, all agreed, we did the C2C in 2010. The easiest two substantial summits activated on the route I took were a detour over Seat Sandal, Fairfield and St Sunday Crag. Route details on my blog:
Never had a problem with Dent Phil. Its normally a very busy route. Currently there is a bit of logging going on to re-wild but otherwise a nice easy start to SOTA.
St Bees is now back up to it’s pre-covid business for walkers. Normally spotted coming off the train on a friday afternoon trying to work out which way to the various guesthouses.
Thanks for the info on Dent. I’m not aware of anyone getting stopped when crossing Dent access land on foot, but when the government want to make it a public right of way and an official national route I expect the landowner would expect to be paid for giving up some of his rights, so I would think some negotiations would have to have taken place and an agreement made before the announcement was made.
Ah, that kind of thing Phil. There are loads of trails in the forest that are now closed. Most of these were ‘illegal’ trails for mountain biking or fell running. The logging has knackered them as well as the forest paths like bummers (no idea why it’s called that but it went from the top of Dent down to uldale farm and was probably not on the official route).
Its all still accessible and give it a few decades and it’ll be properly wild again.
As a tour group leader/tour I’ve lead a few commercial Coast to Coast walks.
I never heard of problems over access at Dent Fell, but a little further on I recall several of my group who were walking ahead of me, not noticing the correct route around a property - they ended up in the garden of a private house as the correct route was obscured by bed sheets hung out on the washing line. The owner wasn’t too pleased and a couple of the group thought it was my fault!
There are two places on the C to C where there’s a real risk of harm/death…
Ennerdale where the walk follows a narrowish traverse across a small cliff/cragg (Robin Hood Chair), above the Ennerdale water. A number of people have fallen off this path and died, at least one was a C to C walker. In my view its no problem at all. You need to be reasonably sure footed & confident. An average walker should be able to manage it with hands in pockets. Obviously many of the people who do it aren’t quite used to the exposure and you need to help and/or reassure many. You’d be surprised at the many people who tackle this route without having ever walked over uneven ground before. I had one American women drop out of the walk after day one with massive blisters on both feet. She thought it was a ‘proper path’, when she booked even though all the companies make it clear its not.
A much bigger danger is the crossing over the A19 a dual carriage way (4 lanes of traffic) For logistical reasons commercial led groups often arrive there around the rush hour late i in the afternoon. There’s absolutely no provision for pedestrians crossing on foot and depending on exactly where you attempt to cross it there’s may be no central barrier either. You just hope no one runs in front of a vehicle, trips, or can’t get into the central barriers if that is possible, or attempts to run all the way across where there’s gaps in the barrier… It always made me nervous crossing with groups. The last thing you wanted was an accident. And here any accident was going to be serious. There has been the odd death but as far as I’m aware no C to C walkers or any other group.
l only hope that the provision to improve this crossing is done by a bridge like there is over the M62 for the Pennine or an underpass, and not alteration to the barriers & gaps in the barriers which as been done/proposed in the past.
As for SOTA ? I’ve led two groups since I got my licence. Never took a radio - too busy with the group for that! Perhaps a C to C SOTA walk??
Thanks for the info on your experience leading paying groups over the C2C, enlightening!
Well I was into SOTA when I led my XYL and two friends across the route in 2010. It was a worthwhile SOTA experience for me. One of the friends husbands acted as bag carrier, so we were able to stay in hotels and B&Bs that we booked ourselves in advance. To get around the Grasmere one night stopover problem (no B&B or hotel wants guests to stay one night). Our driver took us from Grasmere to the White Lion in Patterdale where we stayed two nights. After night one he returned us to Grasmere and we walked back to Patterdale over Seat Sandal, Fairfield and St Sunday Crag. The list of seven summits I activated on the walk were using only 2m FM:
G/LD-022 Seat Sandal
G/LD-010 St Sunday Crag
G/NP-009 Nine Standards Rigg
G/TW-002 Cringle Moor
G/TW-001 Round Hill
Let us hope they find a safe crossing of the A19, unless they change the route and take the offical route via Osmotherley.
73 Phil G4OBK