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Hay-on-Wye to Kington

Friday, July 06, 2012

These blog entries detail the adventures, perils, and inclement weather that befell Deborah, our Director of Marketing here at Pike’s Waterfront Lodge, and her husband Martin along Offa’s Dyke, a 182-mile long trek along the border of England and Wales. For the full introduction and to start at the beginning to read the stories in order, see the June 28th, 2010 blog entry.

Hay-on-Wye to Kington

 Hello all,

 We had heard reports of belligerent badger harassment on the Hergest ridge on the way into Knighton but we were taken by surprise by the domineering cows in the fields approaching the ridge. Martin had taken to pulling a cart of weapons after the bad incident with the rabbits. It was fortunate he had planned ahead as subsequent events proved his forethought providential.

We had just entered a field by the Wye, high about the river with splendid views of Hay and beyond when a meek almost timorous cow ambled over to us. Martin remained alert as I photographed this mild bovine specimen. Just as fog oozes through the Golden Gate, other cows silently ringed us, eyeing my camera and walking stick. They sensed the iPad within.
They moved closer, crowding us away from the Offa Dyke path toward the red mucky clay pasture where we knew we could not escape. Martin shouted to me to drop back behind his pack as he whipped out the double-edged, two handed axe. He whirled it about him; it whistled through the air as the cows dropped back. "Run,” he shouted "toward the acorn”, a sign marking Offas Dyke and the path to safety. He fought his way to me as we leapt over the stile, leaving the killer cows behind.

We then rested in the vestibule of the Romanesque church of St. Michael of the Fiery Comet (this is the real name). We had a delicious lunch of roast beef on a whole grain roll followed by tea from our flask and Welsh cakes make with sultanas and currants. Yum. Storm after storm blew through as we experienced sleet and hail with the wind blowing so hard that we couldn't use our umbrellas. We finally made it to Gladestry where there was a public house. I was fantasizing about a hot pot of tea. Alas. The whole town was at a funeral so the public house was closed and we drank our cold water and ate our cold protein bars in the bus stop. The bus comes by weekly. We met up with some hikers that we had been seeing, David and Angela from Leeds, and chatted while it poured.
We then climbed up the Hergest Ridge for gorgeous views into Wales. There were still storms passing through but the wind was at our backs and the sun came out. A glorious day. After we found our b and b, we had a fine dinner at the Oxford Arms and met our new friends again.

Tomorrow onto Knighton and what perils lurk on the trail.