Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018

Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018
Showing posts with label Yorkshire Moors. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Yorkshire Moors. Show all posts

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Ramsoc Weekend at Helmsley – 28/29 October 2017


I’ve been recording these weekends for some time. Since the time when many of those attending brought their children along. Those parents are now free to take longer walks as the children are ensconced in various types of further education. So Saturday’s team that walked directly from the hostel was a very jolly nonet of obsolete parents (except Janet – who was very much in demand).


Others went for a bath in some slurry near Chop Gate, but the following picture shows the the muddiest the path up Ash Dale got.


Several plantations were negotiated as the paths gradually narrowed.


We emerged from woodland to discover masses of happy free range animals near Oscar Park Farm. Sue fed them sausages left over from breakfast.


An easy section of roadside verges was rendered a bit scary by racing motor cyclists, but we soon left that to descend to Rievaulx for lunch, either here outside the English Heritage relic (none of us is a member) or in the café by the entrance, where Janet enjoyed the comparative luxury of a proper chair.


Just down the road is Rievaulx Bridge, a structure listed as being of historic interest:

Bridge. C18. Limestone ashlar. 3 segmental arches, central one being wider and taller, with 2 cutwaters to each side. Band above arches and plain chamfered parapets. Pevsner, Yorkshire: The North Riding, 1966.


Looking back, we admired the remains of the Abbey. It started life in 1132 and had a rich history up to 1538, when at the time of its dissolution it was said to consist of 72 buildings occupied by the abbot and 21 monks, with 102 lay employees, and an income of £351 a year. The abbey owned a prototype blast furnace at Laskill, producing cast iron as efficiently as a modern blast furnace.


From Rievaulx it’s an easy walk back to Helmsley along the pretty Cleveland Way path.


Everything is still pretty green, so we can expect the remaining leaves to fall during the next few weeks. We haven’t had much frost yet, so it still feels quite summery. (Today in Timperley the cafés were making full use of their pavement tables.)

I hadn’t noticed many flowers, so on the walk into Helmsley I kept an eye out for them. Here are some that I spotted::

Herb Robert


Red Campion






White Dead-nettle


Common Valerian




Red Clover


Hedge Bindweed




I managed to snap these Magic Mushrooms just before Neal and Jenny ran off with them and found a bench on which to hallucinate.


By then we were close to Helmsley, so we could dash down past the castle that has a since its construction from wood in 1120.


Borough Beck runs through the centre of the market town.


There’s an impressive church.


The ‘Sugared Butterfly’ provided a suitable antidote, from where we drifted in various ways back to the Youth Hostel, depending on shopping preferences.

It was an 18 km walk, with about 300 metres ascent, taking about 6.5 hours, of which my Garmin gadget reports us as having been stationary for about two hours.


The evening meal at the hostel was a little disappointing. My soup was excellent, but the veggie cannelloni could be likened to a pool of sludge, and I noticed that Janet just got a plate of scrapings! The apple crumble was good though. I later discovered that the YHA is now outsourcing its food, so it’s not cooked on site. I think we may revert to self-cooking in future.

Sunday saw most of the people that Sue and I had walked with on Saturday heading off in other directions, as did Colin (pregnancy pains), Paul (leg pains) and Chris and Alys (Megan and Joe pains). So there was only one walk, also from the hostel, outside which we milled around for much of the morning.


Eventually we set off, heading by accident along a new footpath to Riccal Dale.


Jess led the way with some very long strides whilst a man looking for deer lumbered along at the back.


A field of sheep chased after us, briefly, then they lost interest and allowed us to enjoy elevenses in the sunshine, though it must have been raining nearby.


After only a very short duplication of yesterday’s route we passed a large group who were lunching at yesterday’s elevenses point, then we headed along excellent paths past a leaping fox (or was it a lynx?) into Beck Dale for lunch at a picnic bench that accommodated six of us. The other five got wet bottoms on a bank.


The sun came out as we continued down Beck Dale past lots of flowers like the ones seen yesterday.


Shortly before Helmsley there’s a good spot for those who need to wash their feet, then a nicely paved path leads into the centre of the town.


We were back soon after one o’clock, after a 14 km stroll with about 200 metres ascent, taking around 3.5 hours.


The easy drive home in two hours contrasted significantly with Friday afternoon’s four hour battle with traffic to reach Helmsley.

A very jolly weekend. I hope others enjoyed it as much as I did.

There’s a slideshow (65 images) . Click on the first image then click on ‘slideshow’. Sorry about the lack of tractors. Sorry, but Google has recently disabled this function. I’ll have to find another way of sharing the slideshow.

. You may be able to see the pictures, but the captions don’t seem to show. Along with many others I fear I have to abandon what was once a good product for creating public slideshows and use someone other than Google. The forums are full of complaints, but Google don’t seem to care. They just make retrograde ‘updates’.

7 November – I’ve tried to upload to Flickr – see . Scroll to the top of the screen. For a full screen slideshow, without captions, click on the TV screen icon, third from the left at the right of the screen above the images. To control the speed and see the captions, don’t click the above icon, instead click on the first image and then use the arrows on the screen or your keyboard to scroll through the pictures, below which the caption, if there is one, should appear at the bottom of the screen. If like me you find that it’s obscured by the taskbar (the row of icons at the bottom of the screen) right click the taskbar and click on ‘Taskbar settings’. Turn ‘Automatically hide the taskbar in desktop mode’ to ‘On’. Note the taskbar reappears when you move your cursor to the bottom of the screen – assuming that’s where you keep your taskbar. Note also that you can scroll down to more information about each picture, and you can add comments.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Thursday 11 to Sunday 14 September 2014 – Robin Hood’s Bay


This was a trip for Graham and Tove and 16 of their friends, by way of celebration of their tenth wedding Anniversary.

Sue and I were allocated to the luxurious surroundings of 'Hensingham' - a cottage that we shared with Robin, Jenny, Tom and Julie.

We arrived on Thursday afternoon, in the bright September sunshine to which we'd become accustomed, to find lazy seagulls and crows basking on the chimney pots.

We soon found the others at 'The Studio' and 'York House', equally fine holiday houses, or dining at 'The Dolphin', which does very nice meals.

Friday morning dawned fine but overcast in Robin Hood's Bay.

Fifteen of us made our way up the hill to the Cleveland Way footpath, which passes near a strange hobbit home like millennium sculpture.

We soon passed a 'Rocket Post' from which a thin line could be fired to a ship in distress, enabling a thicker hawser to be attached to the ship's mast. Rescue could then be effected by way of a 'Breeches Buoy' - a lifebuoy attached to a pair of shorts - into which the shipwrecked seamen jumped one by one, taking turns to be hauled landwards.


There were good views back towards Robin Hood’s Bay on this hot hazy day, on which we soon met an elderly couple last seen in Reeth on our Coast to Coast walk - it was great to see them successfully finishing their third C2C walk.

Frequent pauses were enjoyed, with folk lingering and chatting and admiring the coastal scenery.


There were swarms of Black-backed Gulls and many more seabirds.

Sometime later, we paused for tea and cake.


After a further period of ambling, the remains of Whitby Abbey slowly appeared through a veil of haze.


After passing through a large mobile home site, we arrived at the Abbey. Some visited the church, whilst others waited at the top of a long flight of stairs.

Eventually descending the stairs, we entered the buzzing metropolis, with its Whitby Jet shops and ice cream parlours.

Some of us found a fine lunch spot on the south pier, sheltered from a gentle sea breeze and with a good view to the town and the harbour. Others found a pub.


Whilst the other thirteen drove back to Robin Hood’s Bay using pre-positioned transport, Sue and I enjoyed the walk back, starting across the beach in Whitby harbour.

We headed for the old railway line, but we were seduced by a fine looking riverside path to Ruswarp, from which the cinder track on the viaduct high above wasn't really accessible!

Sue spotted this Orange Hawkweed (aka Fox and Cubs).


After the pleasant diversion through Ruswarp, and a short section of quiet road, we eventually gained the cinder track at the south side of the viaduct.

It was mostly uphill. We found a lady carrying a bench that some jokers had moved a few hundred metres out of position. We gave her a hand (or four) before depositing it in position and depositing ourselves on it to enjoy the dregs of our flask.


There was a good view back to Whitby. Soon after this we reached Hawsker Station, which flourishes as a centre for bike hire, tea shop and a bunkhouse, including luxury accommodation in old Pullman coaches.

Today’s walk for Sue and me was about 25 km, with 500 metres ascent, taking 7 hours. The others did about 12 km.


After a celebratory meal at the Bramblewick restaurant, we adjourned to our respective cottages before rising on Saturday to slog up the hill to the X93 (I think) bus for Scarborough - a pleasant double-decker ride on another fine, hot, but overcast day. Fifteen of us set off on the walk back to Robin Hood’s Bay, the best part of 5 km passing before we reached the outskirts of Scarborough.


During the walk along the ‘prom’, Sue and I popped into a coffee shop for refreshments, soon catching the others up as they had spent the time queuing for a toilet. We then passed a blank wall onto which delicately painted windows had been added.

Fred Gilroy (1921 to 2008) was a former bricklayer and war veteran who had the misfortune of being involved in the liberation of Belsen Concentration Camp in 1945. He was also a reluctant magician, and has retained this skill in death, thanks to the brilliance of Ray Lonsdale. Here he has waved his wand at Julie, who is quite small enough without being shrunk by naughty Fred!


Sue was impressed with these colourful beach houses that towered over our diminutive companion.


Eventually, after some "It's a long clump along this eternal sea-front" groaning from those who hadn’t taken advantage of the coffee shop, we reached Scalby Mills and the bridge over easily forded Scalby Beck that leads to the soft cliff top path followed by the Cleveland Way.


After a while, and after an early lunch, we found ourselves on course for Hayburn Wyke, passing large clumps of the Hogweed that lines these paths at this time of year.


At Hayburn Wyke, the ‘Hotel’ marked on our Ordnance Survey maps turned out to be a good pub despite the lack of a blue tankard on the map. Others seemed set on spending the afternoon here, so Sue and I finished our tea and set off as an advance party back to Robin Hood’s Bay.


Harebells kept us company as we tootled on, up some rather steep steps at one point, towards Ravenscar.

By the time we reached the remains of Ravenscar Radar Station the sun had managed to pierce the overcast skies, and Tom was waiting for us at the Ravenscar Tea Rooms, a familiar place to those who have completed the classic 40 mile Lyke Wake Walk as many times as I’ve done.

Sue has also spent time here, uncovering the Alum workings.The site of the uncovered remains is just to the right of the house, pictured below, that Sue stayed in 30 years ago.


The Cleveland Way is now a well established Long Distance Path. The signage for this, and the Coast to Coast path on which we recently walked, has recently been upgraded or replaced and is impressive hereabouts.

It was good to see that the work started by the working party that Sue was part of 30 years ago has been maintained, if not continued, though the information boards are rather badly faded.


At Stoupe Beck you can leave the cliff top path and return to Robin Hood’s Bay via the beach - we had just enough time to take this route before the tide came in.


Past Boggle Hole the beach becomes sandy and heavily used, with the fleshpots of Robin Hoods Bay beckoning the weary walker.

We got back at 5.15, with Robin joining us for a giant piece of carrot cake just a few minutes later, whilst the rest of the team staggered in at around 6.30, just as Sue and I were enjoying another meal at the Dolphin.

Today we covered 27 km, with 700 metres ascent, taking 7 hours (others taking rather longer).


Sunday dawned ... cloudy, but fine and warm. We slowly dispersed from Robin Hood’s Bay - Flamborough, Stokesley and Sandsend were all mentioned, but Sue and I went to Goathland, a favourite destination of mine.

Coffee and cats at the Station tearooms went down well, including an amusing incident involving two cats trying to sit on the same small map.


Whilst Goathland Station was getting ready for a busy Sunday, we headed along the trackside path and watched this loco at Darnholme before heading up the hill to Greenlands Farm.


Again, it wasn’t the best day for photography, but there were some very pleasant views through the haze.

Lunch was taken on a bench overlooking Grosmont, where the national rail network links with the rejuvenated line to Pickering.


The path back to Goathland leads past the engine sheds and yard, with Sir Nigel Gresley and 75029 in evidence, as well as this  huge 2-10-0 engine, number 3672. Now then, where did I put that Iain Allan spotter’s book!


Moments later a huge diesel loco huffed past us. I remember these Deltic class locos providing the beef in front of the expresses on the East Coast line in the 1960's.

Apart from the reclaimed line to Pickering, there's also an older, disused, line that started as a tramway and operated between 1836 and 1865. This now forms the basis of the path between Grosmont and Goathland.


Beck Hole station remains much the same as it was in bygone days. The tramway continues to Goathland, but at Beck Hole we took the path beside West Beck towards Mallyan Spout, past trees with impressive growths of mosses, lichens and fungi.


A rising path leads from Mallyan Spout to a busy hotel, then two sides of a triangle led us back to Goathland and this recovery vehicle and Heartbeat’s Ford Anglia police car from 1965.


Here’s our route for the day - 16 km, with 400 metres ascent, taking 4.5 hours.


Then we went home, most satisfied with our weekend exertions in the best of company.

The delay in this posting is due to Sue and me taking around 250-300 photos during the course of the weekend. In a busy week, these have had to be sorted and culled, with just 25 appearing above, and a slide show of 83 pictures having now been uploaded here. If you click on the first image, then click ‘slideshow’, then click ‘Pause’ at the bottom of the screen, you should be able to move through the show manually using the arrow buttons on your keyboard. Please let me know if it doesn’t work; I’m having trouble with Google and Picasa at present.

Have fun!