Today would be the final day of this wonderful trek across England! We would savor every moment. Our stay at Intake Farm had been a lovely experience and Judith came out to give us all a hug as we prepared to leave. Then, after we departed, my mom helped Judith feed the farm’s orphaned lambs while waiting for her Packhorse van to Robin Hood’s Bay – the eastern terminus of the C2C trail.
We descended almost immediately into the charming Littlebeck Wood. Soon, we happened on “The Hermitage”, a very large rock with a manmade cave. Local legend has it that the cave was hollowed out in 1790 by an unemployed seaman, George Chubb, who was commissioned to do this to keep him active. Note the inscription “G.C.” over “1790” above the cave entrance in the picture below.
In about half a mile, we were treated to the Falling Foss waterfall that was visible through the trees.
Right on the C2C trail, Midge Hall is a quaint, former game keeper’s cottage that has been converted into a home and Falling Foss Tea Garden. Unfortunately, we had just had breakfast and were not in the tea and scones mood!
The path through Littlebeck Wood was accompanied by a quiet, babbling brook, May Beck.
Emerging from magical Littlebeck Wood, we popped out on yet another moor, Sneaton Low Moor, on our march to the sea.
The closer we got to the sea, the more spectacular were the views of Whitby Abbey.
A pasture full of adorable ponies and their foals was worth a little down time to watch the foals run and play.
This was the first sign pointing us to Robin Hood’s Bay.
Success! We made it to the North Sea coast!
Turning south to walk along the sea cliff, we felt as if this bird was a guide, pointing the way!
And finally, we had our first view of the town of Robin Hood’s Bay, snuggled in the harbor. It is doubted that Robin Hood himself ever had a connection with the town but theories abound: perhaps he kept a boat in the harbor for getaways or perhaps he helped the Abbott of Whitby repel Danish raiders or perhaps he (and his Merry Men) defeated a French pirate and redistributed the loot in this town or… These days the main industry of the town is tourism, but in earlier days fishing and farming were the mainstays. And during the 18th-century the town was rougher, supporting rampant smuggling along the Yorkshire coast. It is said that from houses near the coves contraband could be spirited through tunnels to the hills above the town undetected, avoiding the government’s excise men.
Living up to its billing as one of the most picturesque coastal villages in England, Robin Hood’s Bay was a feast for the eyes as we wandered through the village toward the sea. Small alleyways and winding streets hugged the hillside creating an almost Disney-like atmosphere.
When beginning our trip in St. Brees, a traditional ritual required that we tap our toes in the Irish Sea and pick up from the beach a small stone which would be carried across the Coast to Coast trail to the North Sea. Therefore, having reached the North Sea, we now completed the ritual with the ceremonial toe tap and throwing the small stone into the North Sea. The trek was officially complete and what a delightful trek it was!
The Bay Hotel, in its Wainwright
After registering our trip and having a cup of tea at the Old Bakery, we checked in at the very lovely Villa B&B and visited with Jane, the host.