Winchcombe to Dowdeswell, June 5June 5 in the United Kingdom
I've included two pictures from yesterday of the castle gardens. Very pretty and well maintained.
This morning we were up early as we had an eleven mile walk, plenty of up hills, and wanted to get out quickly after breakfast.
I went down early to check out the weather and noticed a meat delivery man taking a half hog into the sausage shop across the street. He carried it on his shoulder without any wrapping on it. Food safety? Then perhaps 30 minutes later, one of the sausage guys was carrying an arm full of packaged sausages up the street to (I presume) the co-op food store. Those sausages were good as Arlene had them for dinner and I had one for breakfast...and no one is sick yet.
Our walk out was quite cool and the uphill began in earnest shortly after passing The Bourne Construction Company. Recall the Bourne trilogy? Must have begun here in Winchcombe.
After passing a cricket field we entered a pasture of sheep (we see lots of sheep, and I do mean lots) and a couple of horses. A beautiful black stallion started to approach me, stuck his nose on my arm making me quite uncomfortable then proceeded to "nose" me up the hill. Arlene got a laugh, but I was worried about being bitten; or worse, losing my hat. I finally stopped to confront him and he stuck his nose where I could rub his forehead. Seemed friendly enough and he must have smelled salt on my pack as I had it in Spain and for sure I sweated while carrying it. This was quite an experience.
We soon approached an ancient burial mound...Belas Knap from the Neolithic period. Per the signage, it dates to 5000 years ago, or 3000 BC. Excavations found several skeletons and radio carbon dated them to that time period. Makes me feel young. The site was very well preserved, perhaps because it was far out in the country and uphill for most.
Our walk continued and we had coffee at a golf course clubhouse on Cleeve Hill...the highest point on the Cotswold Way. Guys playing there must have mountain goat DNA in their blood as it was a very long course, plenty of uphills, and most that I saw were wearing skull caps and jackets and carrying their clubs. It was quite breezy that high with a 360 degree view.
Beautiful scenery surrounded us and though the day was cloudy, we could see for miles and miles given the elevation of the hills. Saw a couple of joggers on the golf course and they passed us flying going downhill towards the butterfly sanctuary.
We finally reached our pickup point. The B & B we are staying in was a taxi ride away from the trail so we had a short wait for the taxi. Lovely B & B and just a short walk outside town.
Dinner was a 28 minute walk away and we enjoyed salmon that was excellent. Of course one must remember that I am extremely hungry and will eat anything...well, just about. Should be another cool walk in the AM. Hope to be on the trail shortly after 0800 as we need a taxi to the trailhead.
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