Lots of Travel, or A Stop in Gretna Green

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April 30th 2007
Published: April 30th 2007
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Traveling to Wasdale Youth Hostel, by Wastwater

Traveling to Wasdale Youth Hostel, by Wastwater
Liz Muir
Today is a travel day. First, we hike back out of Rowardennan to Balmaha. The hike is much better when you have food and sleep, let me assure you. Scotland remains as beautiful as ever, and we still have gorgeous weather. The locals can’t believe there hasn’t been any rain for three days.

We ate lunch at the trailhead and then took a coach (read: bus) to our next hostel in Wasdale. I tried to read on the bus, but the coach was swerving all over the road and I felt almost sick, so I decided to sleep instead. Two hours into the bus ride, we have to take a government-mandated 40-minute stop in Gretna Green. (This is the town just over the Scotland-England border that Lydia and Wickham elope to in Pride and Prejudice—basically the “Las Vegas” of the UK, because marriage laws were less strict in Scotland.)

90 more minutes on the bus plus a two mile walk through a bunch of sheep pastures and we arrive at our next hostel in Wastdale. It’s the beginning of our tour of the lake district, and I’m very excited about it. The hostel and the lake outside it are amazing—the common room looks like something straight out of Pride and Prejudice and the game room is in what used to be some sort of dungeon. Accommodations are cramped—14 of us in one room, so it’s a little crazy, but we survive. We had homemade tomato soup and salad for dinner, which sort of worries me because tomorrow is our long hike up Scafell Pike, the tallest mountain in England, and I could really use some carbs.

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