30th July 2010 - Our biggest day in terms of accent. The mapping software reported around 3100m (equivalent of a Le Tour mountain stage), although I think it was probably less. Knowing this we set off relatively early at around 8:30am (about as early as you can given the time the hostels serve breakfast at). The start of the day was pleasant with a few climbs. It was mostly country lanes with views over the peak district. And despite the climbs, we made good time and didn't tire too much.
We passed through Buxton, which was a nice town with pedestrianised high street. This was our first proper bank stop as we'd not seen many high streets so far (at least ones that have banks on anyway), By about halfway it started to drizzle, and we were becoming tired from all the climbing. It also meant progress was slow. During a rather depressing part of the route, surrounded by grey cloud, and farms that needed a bit of looking after, we stopped at a pub for lunch. On the outside it didn't look great due to the white double glazed windows. However once we got inside, it was excellent, and probably the best pub of the trip. Warm, a lovely reception and the food was home cooked and fresh (they give you a free home-made soup of the day with lunch). So if you're in the area, stop by the The Old Original.
We carried on after lunch in the drizzle. The second part of the trip wasn't nearly as enjoyable as the first. We dropped out of the peak district (or along the side of it) and into towns like Huddersfield. I'm sure it's a nice town but from our expereince, the drivers were awful, roads busy and it wasn't very scenic. By this point the drizzle had turned into hard rain, and we were getting soaked through. Our route into Earby wasn't simple either due to a road having a river (ford) running along it we had to take a slightly round-about route in adding another 5-10km to the route. By this point Darly was struggling too as his gear was soaked through. He (has traveled a lot) described it as colder than Everest base camp, and wetter than the rainy season in south-east Asia. Funny given we were in Barnoldswick in the UK. He got worse though (and slightly dramatic) and started to shiver quite badly, so we pushed on quickly to get to the hostel.
The hostel was ok, a little dated, but not busy. Plenty of space for the bikes, and the best drying room of the whole trip (which we needed after a day like that!). No idea what the carbon footprint for it was though given the number of electric heaters in there. It wasn't near any shops though, so we ordered a curry takeaway for dinner and relaxed for the remainder of the evening.