It’s not much of an exaggeration to say that Hull on a very wet Monday in February put the grim into “oop North”.
I have walked 26.7 km in fairly persistent rain, and enough mud on the last couple of miles to almost suck my boots off. Nevertheless, it has been a red letter day – I crossed the mighty Humber Bridge-a truly awe in sprinting piece of engineering: 1.5 miles long, with the tops of the 155 meter towers 36mm further apart at the top than at the base, to allow for the curvature of the earth, and a swing up to of 4 meters (yes, 12 feet) in the centre to stop it breaking up in high winds.
Fortunately, today was not a high wind. It was brisk enough but nothing out of the ordinary. I set foot on the bridge at around five to nine and descended at around 9.30. Sadly I had very little view down the estuary as it was so cloudy, but standing under the towers and seeing the steel work was view enough. The cables that suspend the 21,000 tonne road, plus 5,000 tonnes of traffic, are actually twists of 14,498 lengths of wire of 5mm diameter each. Laid out, each would reach almost twice around the globe – heady stuff!
Following that excitement, the day was a long, hard slog, mainly along roads, and through deserted docklands to arrive in the not- entirely-inspiring village of Hedon by 4pm. Reading the tourist material in my hotel room, I feel I must have walked through a very different Hull from the one they are advertising. Perhaps it’s a Sliding Doors thing – had I turned left instead of right at Dagger Lane (yes, really) the whole thing might have looked quite different….
I’ve finished walking for the weekend. I shall go to Beverley tomorrow to admire the Minster.