For newcomers

At the bottom of each post there is the word "comments". If you click on it you will see comments made by followers, and if you follow the instructions you may also comment and I always welcome that. I have found many people overlook this part of the blog which is often more interesting than the original post!


Sunday, 12 June 2016

Lancashire Witches Walk (3)

Saturday 11th June 2016

Some walks are featureless and demand some invention to create an interesting post. Today was the opposite, especially including the turkey incident, but more of that later.

The outlook was not promising with intermittent rain forecast.

Driving to drop off Bowland Climber's car at the remote end-of-Tarmac location north of Slaidburn on ever degenerating road surfaces was a journey into the unknown for me to start with, and then by contrast we returned to Clitheroe, and busy civilisation in my car.

Although we passed through no villages except for Slaidburn a mile or so from our finish, there was always interest. Two hours of uphill saw us walk through pleasant lanes and tracks, then onto moorland with curlews and peewits to arrive on the summit of Easington Fell (the third time for me).  That is another hill I have inadvertently visited more than once - the last time invited to join BC and his friend Barry, then realising I had climbed the hill a year earlier as a Marilyn approaching from the other side.

Modest descent across remote moorland took us to the edge of the moors where it was apparent there would be great views, "on a clear day", down to Slaidburn and the Hodder valley with the extensive Bowland Hills beyond.

Where agriculture meets the moor we happened on the building of Fell Side. This looks to have been a farmhouse (now unoccupied) with a sort of large shooting lodge attached. Here was a veranda with seats and benches, presumably where the lowly beaters would sit eating their sandwiches whilst the shooting brigade were living it up with posh catering inside. Whilst we were pondering on whether to sit on the veranda for lunch as the predicted rain had just arrived, a guy rolled up in a 4WD to feed dogs in some adjacent kennels, and we asked permission to use the seating. That was a bit of a problem because much of it was covered in large, unidentifiable animal droppings, but we did find a clean bench. We were just settled down when we were alarmed by a hideous, raucous animal sound and round the corner of the building a monster turkey strutted up to the glass window of the shooting lodge to convince his reflection that he would be a suitable mate - I'm not sure what that said about his sexual orientation. All this lead us to a frantic photography session - see the photos below.

Descending into Slaidburn we found there was a steam gathering afoot and we spent an interesting half hour wandering round the exhibits, and in the centre of the village there was a steam organ playing that awful fairground music at roof lifting volume - not a place to linger for long.

We were wearing waterproof jackets, but they were hardly necessary in the light spasmodic rain, and we plodded on, again on a pleasant woodland path following the stream and then into fields to regain the road for the final few hundred yards back to the car, but even here there was more interest, especially a huge area of disused agricultural machinery, blighting the landscape in what is a most attractive area of countryside leading onto the moors of Salter Fell. Our next section will follow the old Salter Fell track over remote country for ten miles, and our logistics have been devised to ensure that we can use the two car strategy to enable us to cover this section where there is no other road access.


River Ribble, just out of Clitheroe

More hares at some distance on long zoom

Back to Clitheroe: church on the left and castle on the right both photographed on my previous post at closer quarter. You can see that it was a gloomy day

This walk has featured Middle Age buildings all along the way - this looks as though it has been inserted in the barn wall more recently but the date at the top reads 1692

We were just taking this inside the barn when the farmer appeared. Fortunately he was understanding. We were told it was a 1967(?) Selctomatic, Alan R may add something to this.

This meadow flower was prolific. I thought it was cowslip but BC  thought otherwise

On the way to Easington Fell

Another "relic". I presume it is a harrow for breaking up soil, but what is it doing on moorland near the summit of Easington Fell?

We were in excited anticipation of this and another a few hundred yards further on, marked respectively on the map as: The Wife (pile of stones) and Old Ned (pile of stones).
This pathetic photo illustrates my resulting lack of enthusiasm, and I had no motivation to photo Old Ned when we arrived there.

The arrival of Mr. Turkey

BC tries to photo. Mr T then lunged towards BC making that awful noise and BC retreated rapidly backwards and nearly fell over

 The Bowland Hills would normally be seen up above and the start of our next section - ten miles over the wild Salter Fell.

Typical Yorkshire bluntness, but heh! We're in Lancashire. I wonder where the shop owner hails from?

Number 5 of the Carol Ann Duffy tercet poems, see below

More ancient building. It says the "central" post office - I don't think Slaidburn would be likely to boast another one less central. The steam organ was playng just behind me as I was taking this - ear defenders would have been welcome.

The arguably disturbing assemblage of used farming machinery in this otherwise attractive, remote country setting, but at the same time it inspired a sort of wonder

"What is that coming over the hill, is it a monster?"

I have put a copy into my "relics" folder, but I thought it may be saved with a bit of TLC

All sorts of latter day artefacts resting in this old barn including the vintage tricyle

CLICK TO ENLARGE. Ignore light green route - yet another of my pipe-dreams


Thursday 9th June 2016

Just a few photos from my shorter walk this Thursday with Pete up above Staveley;

This one looked a bit more unusual - Comment from Alan R. welcomed


gimmer said...

SHUT - I wonder how they 'welcome' one when 'open' - 'orlright then, come in if you must, but be quick, we're busy wi' us tea'

looks to be a great walk - well spotted

Sir Hugh said...

Gimmer - I've got over a hundred now in my "signs" folder. I hope to do a summary of the walk whrn finished. There will be two more scetions but BC is away for a week or so.

AlanR said...

I'm pretty sure it's a Leyland 344/255 but strangely enough it has a 2 wheel drive tyre on the offside and a 4 wheel drive tyre on the near side.

The first tractor is a heap! The farmer should be ashamed.

Sir Hugh said...

Alan R - Wow! That's some observant info. on the Leyland, and your comment on the other livens up my post no end.

Anonymous said...

Thought I had posted a comment - but maybe lost in the ether.
That was a busy post.
Your cowslip was a Yellow Rattle [Rhinanthus minor] the 'vampire' plant that sucks the goodness from the roots of grass and clover. Your friend Pete would benefit from it in his 'meadow'.

Sir Hugh said...

BC - Yes, it was a bit time consuming putting this one together, but I am getting very slick with the photos having developed a sort of clockwork system.

I seem to remember Pete and Liz telling me about their meticulous preparation for their "natural" wild meadow two years ago including the scattering of yellow rattle seed. At the moment they have gone away and I am in charge of watering more sensitive parts of their garden including a huge gunnera.