Thursday, 29 September 2011

BMW North York Moors & Whitby

Whitby Abbey from West Cliff
Another beautiful day, really warm. I got an early start and rode over to the North York Moors. From Thirsk I went via Boltby, Ryedale, Helmsley, Farndale, Rosedale and Egton Bridge to arrive beside the seaside at Whitby. The dales were nice and quiet, but by contrast Whitby was awash with folk. The beaches looked like a summer sunday, some people were swimming in the sea! My return route led via Sandsend, Danby, Kildale, Stokesley, Cattrick and Wensleydale. The sun retained its warmth almost until I arrived back home just as it was setting. Its a shame I hadn't been able to get across to the moors a few weeks earlier to see the heather in full bloom, its always a magnificent sight.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

BMW Alston & Teesdale

Lunch spot.
Taking advantage of the excellent day, because there probably won't be many more suitable for riding the motorbike in comfort. I rode over to my favourite area of the north pennines, crossing Hartside pass to Alston and travelling south to Teesdale, before crossing back to Brough on the western edge of the Pennines. The route then took the more direct way through Kirkby Stephen and Sedbergh. The sun shone for much of the day, and a very lazy lunch was taken on a bench beside a minor road high above the Tees.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Bloggin & Gear Reviews

Ok, so those of us who read a number of outdoor Blogs, lightweight and otherwise, will more than likely have read and andy's thoughts on reviews of gear. I am at one with Andy's thoughts on this. I've got to say the chance of me being loaned/given any gear for review are scarce indeed. Anyone who visits this blog will be well aware that there is little in the way of gear testing reported here! I like most am a sucker for the latest and greatest bit of kit, but find that most of it, with odd exceptions doesn't add to the experience but often removes one from it. To be honest I'd rather be out there doing it than sat at home writing about it. My two days off each week are precious time to be spent in the outdoors. Much of the gear I use is no longer made, but is every bit as good as the new stuff, there's almost always a trade off! Doesn't mean I don't like reading about new stuff mind! Back to the point, I'm glad Andy has raised this issue, any reveiw must be transparent to give it any value at all to those out there who are just getting into this outdoor world. Wow that was a bit of a rant!!

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Skelwith & Owlets Nest

Lingmoor Fell and the Langdale Pikes from Elterwater
A gentle ramble from Skelwith Bridge, past Skelwith Force and turned south along the Cumbria Way. After visiting Colwith Force, the next point on the walk was the renewed bridge adjacent to the ford in Little Langdale. Following the metalled lane to the B road which leads eventually to Wrynose. Our route turned right to cross into Great Langdale via Owlets Nest ( a wonderful name), descending to Elterwater in the afternoon sunshine, the trees a marvellous range of colours. The way back to the car was the path beside Elterwater and the Brathey river.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

RSF ride from Tebay

Climbing up Orton Scar
This was my first ride with the Rough Stuff Fellowship (RSF). For those who aren't aware the RSF pre-dates modern mountain biking by more than 20 years. The big difference is that it's no shame to walk and indeed being out in the countryside is the important bit. There were three of us today, our ride took us from the tearoom in Tebay along the old road to Gaisgill, where we crossed the "new"road. Heading roughly north we reached the first bridleway which took us past a stone circle, and climbed up over Orton Scar and down to the ancient pile of Gaythorne Hall. Back up over Westgill Head and down towards Crosby Ravensworth, stopping en-route for lunch. We looked in the churchyard at Crosby Ravensworth to fin and photograph the gravestone of the lost cyclist. Our bridleway led us up to Oddendale farm where we turned left and crossed the moor to bring us to the edge of Orton. Coffee and cake were taken at the chocolate shop before minor roads and a short bridleway brought us back to Tebay. I throughly enjoyed my day and looked forward to the next outing.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

BMW Hawes & Kettlewell

Across Wensleydale from nr Thornton rust
A short but pleasurable ride down Wensleydale to Aysgarth, were the falls were nicely full after our rather wet spell. Then over to Kettlewell via West Burton and Buckden. Back home through Grassington, Airton, Settle and Kirkby Lonsdale. Trees are really turning now, there's quite a chill in the air first thing, indeed only 2 degrees in Shap according to the radio this morning. It was great to sit and have lunch in the sun and simply chill out.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Eaves Wood and New Barns Bay

Not the day I thought it was going to be! Weeks ago I had booked today as a days holiday so that I could watch "The Tour of Britain" cycle race, however due to the arrival of the remnants of hurricane Katchia the Kendal to Blackpool stage was cancelled. At 10.30am on Grayrigg common this was entirely understandable, it was all I could do to stand up! So plan B was a walk in the relatively sheltered area of Arnside and Silverdale. I had met a friend Ian here and a modest walk was taken through Eaves Wood, past Arnside tower over the shoulder of Arnside Knott and down to New Barns Bay. The warm moist conditions recently seem to have produced a great selection of fungi. Our return route followed the shore, the wind terrific whipping up huge waves in what is after all an estuary. Field paths and the bottom of Eaves Wood brought us back to our cars.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

BMW Wrynose & Hardknott

Southern Fells from Birker Moor
A short ride on the motorbike over the passes as above. Everywhere remarkably quiet considering the superb weather, which was rather against the forecast. The bracken is at last starting to die off, the trees are not far behind. The all pervading green will soon give way to the orange's and russets of Autumn. I had lunch beside the Birker Moor road, with a fantastic view over the Southern Fells.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Austwick & Wharfe

Austwick Beck and Moughton scar
 A walk by accident! The original plan was to walk some more of the Leeds Liverpool canal, but the weather was so good that we wanted to be out of the car as soon as possible. An easy stroll round the bridleways and footpaths between Austwick and the hamlet of Wharfe. We saw lots of wild food in the hedgerows and lots of farm animals in the fields. This is another relatively quiet area away from the honeypot favourites in the main part of the dales. The big surprise was the weather, forecast to be overcast, the sun shone virtually the whole time we were out.