Log No 187. Sat 23rd Nov 2013 - Cleveleys to Preston, 24 miles (2886 miles walked)
Last night was a very cold one, if it gets much colder than this I'm going to have to sleep inside my sleeping bag under the duvet and blanket.
Tram at Blackpool
Having the camper is great but planning the walks to tie in with the public transport can make things a bit awkward.
If I don't end the day at the end of a main bus or train route it means I have to catch 2 buses and that just adds to the time.
Today Preston is an obvious stop but it is 26 miles, 24 if I miss out a bit along the River Ribble. I don't want to walk in the dark so I would need to be walking by 08.00 at the latest.
Blackpool Tower & North Pier
By the time I got to my starting point it was 08.45.
It had clouded over by now but there was no wind and no low sun in my eyes so walking was easy, all flat promenades.
I had been to Blackpool once before, it must be 35 years ago with Sandra, but I can't remember anything about it.
Every building on the sea front seems to be a hotel, at the moment it looks like any seaside resort in the winter with most of the places closed, just dog walkers about and piles of dog dirt on the promenade.
As someone who prefers wild remote places the "Pleasure Beach" at the south promenade gives me the shivers, or maybe it's just the grey morning.
It is a very sudden change to the scenery when you get to the end of the promenade, with the tide out all I could see was sand and once on the sand the tide was that far out I could hardly see it.
The beach to Lytham St Anne's
I stayed on the beach to the pier at Lytham St Anne's and then got back up onto the promenade.
Staying on the sea front of all the places I pass through means I don't really get to see anything of them so I could easily have a distorted view of them.
Coming in to Lytham St Anne's
Trying to make up time I hadn't stopped yet but it was 11.30 so I sat on a bench for a quick break and half my lunch.
I had a choice to make now, stick to the Lancashire Coastal Way for 5 miles while it followed the Ribble for a bit before rejoining the main road or just stay on the road and save a good half an hour.
Lytham St Anne's
On the road I reckoned I might just make it to Preston for 16.00, there was a train back to Blackpool at 16.02, so I opted for the shortcut and got onto the A584.
The walk on the road was better than I thought as there was pavement or cycleway all the way.
I got to Freckleton after 2 hours and my feet were telling me I had to stop. I found a bench and took my second quick break of the day and finished off my lunch.
On the road a number 68 bus had been passing me often, every half hour I thought, I hadn't managed to pick up any bus timetables but this looked promising. I found a bus stop that had some times displayed and there was a bus every 15 minutes from Preston to Blackpool so there was not quite the same urgency now.
Coming into Preston the train station was nearer and I arrived at 15.53, just enough time to find where to buy a ticket and get to the right platform.
I got back to the camper for 18.00 after getting a bus from Blackpool to Cleveleys and I was tired.
I drove back to the same car park as last night and made a quick meal, a packet of noodles and a tin of Chicken Korma.
It wasn't going to be as cold tonight with the cloud cover, the camper has a gas heater but I don't use it preferring to sit with the blanket over me while I write the log.
I was too tired tonight, finding myself nodding off, and knowing I was having Sunday off abandoned the log until the morning and succumbed to a cosy bed.