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29 October 2014

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Three Peaks Challenge

More than 200,000 walkers have completed the Three Peaks challenge walk in the Yorkshire Dales in the last 35 years. Mike Kemp and colleagues are just a few of the latest. Here's his record of the walk.

More than 200,000 walkers have completed the 3 Peaks challenge walk in the Yorkshire Dales in the last 35 years.

That figure is according to records kept at the starting point, the Pen-y-Ghent café in Horton-in-Ribblesdale. But it’s still probably a conservative estimate.

BBC North Yorkshire team on their walk

Some of the team

Four of us attempted to add to that number. Myself, Ben Cryer, Colin Hazelden and Michelle Lyons set off at 6.04am to walk the 25 miles, including the summits of Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough, and be back at the café within 12 hours.

We were on the top of Pen-y-Ghent, 2,273ft high, just over an hour later. But it would be another five hours before we reached the second summit of Whernside, itself the biggest of the three at 2,419ft.

It feels a long way between the two hills, passing Hull Pot on the way, walking short sections of the Ribble Way, crossing difficult limestone terrain, before reaching the path by the Settle to Carlisle railway line which takes you, eventually, to the top.

On the day we walked the circuit we were blessed for the most part with clear skies and stunning views of each of the hills. So we could see where we’d been and where we still had to go.

Stunning view on 3 peaks walk

Clear skies, stunning views

The next section to the top of Ingleborough, 2,373ft high, passes a wayside café and a pub. Don’t dawdle too long at either or you’ll lose time because, tired as you are by now, it’s a long way to the foot of Ingleborough. Then it’s straight up.

Even when you’ve reached the top of Ingleborough you still have another five miles to go to return to the café. And on the way ignore a weathered finger-post which says it’s one-and-a-half miles to Horton-in-Ribblesdale.

It’s not, it’s probably about double that. Back at the café you can clock back in as long as you registered with them before you left.

Hopefully you’ll have done it within the time of 12 hours. We did. Ten hours, 34 minutes. In so doing we raised a goodly sum for BBC North Yorkshire’s Follow the Rainbow Appeal.

last updated: 22/04/2008 at 16:41
created: 07/10/2005

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