View from Oban Bothy

View from Oban Bothy
Showing posts with label Dales Way. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dales Way. Show all posts

Monday, 2 February 2015

Monday 12th January 2015, more Dales Way

A bit late in posting: more Dales Way:

Bowness to Burneside

An early morning start from Timperley to drive up to Lancaster to meet Bella and Stuart who were to drive us up to Windermere for the start of the day’s walk.

Bella managed to find a suitable on-street (free!) parking spot for Stuart’s Tardis – and we were off. Uphill.

imageSome bloke in a Velez, stroking Bella. Rick in ecstatic mood.

Although the day was dry the ground was more than a little moist…it was ever so slightly totally waterlogged in many places. All the places actually – apart from most of the tarmac bits.

imageRick demonstrates his uncanny ‘keeping his feet dry’ ability image

Like I said, it was ever so slightly waterlogged.

The walk wasn’t at all strenuous, I think we only ascended around 1100’ over the entire day’s walk. There were some significant bits of tarmac on the route, this is something I’d normally avoid. Given the extreme sogginess of the ground I was quite happy to get some tarmac miles in, Especially as my waterproof Goretex boots were leaking like a sieve.

imageA tree…..I think 

At the end of the walk my feet weren’t exactly soaking wet, well not COMPLETELY soaking wet, but they were a tad damp. I was a bit pleased to see the sign for Burneside railway station, it was our ticket to get back to the Tardis parked up in Bowness. The train whisked us back to Bowness in double quick time.


As can be seen from the map below, the route wasn’t particularly challenging, Apart from that bit to the south of Staveley. But I won’t mention that again.

Where we went (West to East):


It should have been 10 miles but we ended up doing nearer 11. This was mainly because we decided to explore the barren fields and farmland to the south of Staveley. I’d love to be able to tell you how much we relished the diversion. But I won’t.

Having got ourselves back to Bowness we headed back to Lancaster to pick up Rick’s car. But we were once again diverted, this time to the Watermill at Ings. The Collie Wobbles was (were?) excellent. As always.

Another pleasant day out – in excellent company too. Not much not to like. I’d like some waterproof boots though.

Rick and I got back to Timperley at a fairly sensible hour, certainly early enough for me to get showered and fed before heading out to Morris practice. But I decided an evening in front of the TV and the woodburner was a more attractive proposition. And so it was.

Friday, 12 December 2014

2nd December, Even more Dales Way

Bolton Abbey to Otley Chevin

I drove over to Rick’s at the unearthly hour of stupid o’clock in the morning in a fairly successful attempt at beating the worst of the rush hour traffic. I transferred to Rick’s rather more luxurious motor for the journey to darkest Yorkshire – it was his turn to drive. Bella, Stuart and Peter met us at Otley Chevin and they all piled into Rick’s car for the drive to Bolton Abbey.

image Bolton Abbey, where we finished last time….and today’s start

It was a wee bit fresh, although not too cold to deter other walkers – obviously Tuesdays are walking days around these parts. We headed off south on the west bank of the River Wharfe – first stop Ilkley. We were moving at a fair pace, I needed to be back in Timperley for 6.30pm and we had a fair distance to cover.

Lunch was taken at the start / finish of the Dales Way, on the outskirts of Ilkley.



Scones, butties and hot drinks were demolished in double quick time. A rare one-legged heron waiting for lunch to arrive:


After lunch we turned away from the River Wharfe to walk through the centre of Ilkley to gain the heady heights of Ilkley Moor. We were now off the Dales Way proper and on one of the Dales Way link routes partially shared with the Ebor Way. This one goes as far as Leeds – but not today.


The Moody Cow:


I’ll say nowt, it’ll only be wrong.

image Up to Ilkley Moor – without our hats

Looking at the 1:25k OS map it’s clear that this moorland area has a lot of history, there are loads of ancient cairns, cup and ring marked stones shown. I’ll be back to explore the area when time is less pressing, if nothing else it will make an interesting navigational exercise.

We followed a footpath around the edge of the moor rather than across the moor itself, quinciquontly we had interesting views to the north east.

image A radar station, visible to the NE of Ilkley Moor


Cow & Calf rocks

Leaving the moor by Burley Woodhead, our next target was Menston. Light was failing and it was getting cold. We still had plenty of time to get back to Timperley for 6.30pm but we didn’t have time to waste. Paths and lanes were good and easy to follow which made for fast progress. I felt a bit mean pushing the party on, we weren’t even going to manage a pint after this leg of the route.

image Sunset from Beacon Hill, a couple of miles east of Menston

We arrived back at Bella’s Tardis of a Jeep in the dark. When sheep and traffic allowed, we sped back to Bolton Abbey and Rick’s car. We were still okay for time – provided there were no hold-ups on the journey home.

A long hold up around Skipton followed by a virtually closed M66 buggered up the plan big time. A mega multi-vehicle shunt meant that the traffic was going nowhere fast. Hours later we got back…and I got it in the neck.

Oh well, at least it didn’t rain.

Where we jolly-well went:


According to WalkLakes mapping my excellent Garmin Etrex20 GPS we did:

Length: 15.4 miles  24.8 km

Ascent: +539m  -464m

Start: 2014-12-02 10:21:02 GMT

End: 2014-12-02 16:45:10 GMT

A great day out….just a shame about the collateral damage,

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

17th November, A bit more Dales Way

Bridges and Bodgers from Grassington to Bolton Abbey

I collected Rick at the unearthly hour of 7.20am (the 7.20am in the morning) for the drive up to the Yorkshire Dales and the arranged meeting with Bella, Stuart and Peter. It’s a long drive to do such a short walk but it’s an attractive route, we don’t race along, and we enjoy each others company = a lovely day out.

Leaving Bella’s Jeep at Bolton Abbey, 5 walkers squoze into my much smaller car for the drive to Grassington and the start of the day’s walk. Observant readers will notice that we’re doing this route in easy stages (VERY easy stages!) and that we’re walking North to South rather than t’other way around….nor are we walking West to East.

image Off we jolly-well go

The first few miles was on the eastern side of the River Wharfe. The river was a bit full, rain had been raining quite heavily:

image The Wharfe, just outside Grassington




Crossing the suspension bridge over the Wharfe at Hebden


Lunch stop No1, Loup Scar


17th Century bridge at Burnsall


Barden Bridge

A mile or so south of Barden Bridge, the river suddenly narrows quite dramatically at The Strid. The broad and relatively slow flowing River Wharfe is forced through a narrow rocky ravine resulting in a maelstrom of churning, choppy waters. If you fall in it’s unlikely that you’d survive.

image The Strid

Right in the middle of Strid Wood we happened upon this bodger’s workshop:

imageNobody at home 


The bodger’s handiwork

The path climbed away from the river to give us a nice view of Bolton Abbey:



imageThe final river crossing of the day and we were given a choice – footbridge or stepping stones. Guess which way we crossed?

imageTwo sheep 

image A tree

A lovely day out in great company…..and scones and flapjacks. And a beer before heading for home.

This is what we did (sort of):


17.5km, with 286m of up and 364m of down.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

13th October 2014, A bit of The Dales Way

Buckden to Grassington and a Pie Lunch

Rick, Stewart, Bella and Peter have recently been doing sections of The Dales Way in a series of day walks.

Today’s section was a ‘there and back in a day’ trip and had been postponed a couple of times because of bad weather.

It was on a dry but overcast day that Rick’s Honda met Stewart’s Jeep in Grassington and a bit of car juggling later we set off walking from Buckden – north to sarf.



The last time I walked with Bella she was an occasionally obedient, extremely precocious and (very) energetic pup with serious attitude. Now she’s quite obedient, not quite as precocious, amazingly energetic, VERY entertaining and still has serious attitude. A wonderful doggy!



Playing ‘fetch’ with Bella helped keep her mind off the sheep – although to be fair, Stewart has done a marvellous job of training her and she nearly always does as she’s told now. Mostly.


Leaving the village of Buckden, we crossed the River Wharfe to walk south on it’s western banks. Good dry ground with norralot of muddy bits made for good progress.

imageYellow painted bicycles adorned much of the area – echoes of this year’s Tour de France.


Lunch No1 was taken sat on a convenient bench by the bridge across the River Wharfe at Kettlewell. 

imageRiver Wharfe 




In honour of the men of Kettlewell and Starbotton who gave their lives in The Great War and WW2

imageMy kind of walk! 

Kettlewell proved a bit of a bugger to escape from but we managed eventually.


Kilnsey Crag 

imageLooking back at clouds over Kettlewell 

imageThe Yorkshire Dales, this couldn’t be anywhere else 

imageCool dude Rick 


imageConistone Pie – venue for Lunch No2 

This looks an ideal area for a wild camp: lovely smooth ground, delightful Dales scenery….but no water. It’s the limestone y’see.

The assembled group were forced to eat some of Annabel’s High Energy Flapjacks – they seemed to enjoy them….or perhaps they were just brought up to be polite.

image Pete, Rick and Stewart waiting for Bella to finish her lunch 

imageTowards Grassington 

imageMrs Dale’s Dairies? Don’t blame me, it was Rick’s idea. 

This is where we went…near as damnit:


Around 11 miles with around 1100’ of the upwards stuff

Having spent a load of September in (mostly) sunny Spain it was great to get back to do some walking in England – in good company too.

Oh, and we didn’t go to the pub. Not this time.

Whilst typing this up I’ve been listening to Mike Harding here, it’s good. You should give it a go…it’s free.