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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!

My blog nick-name is SIR HUGH. I'm not from the aristocracy - my middle name is Hugh which relates to the list of 282 hills in Scotland compiled by Sir Hugh Munro in 1891. I climbed my last one (Sgurr Mor) on 28th June 2009


Monday, 14 August 2017

Keepin' t’band in t’nick

Sunday 13th August 2017

I don't believe much in carrying a rucksack full of bricks over twenty miles to train for  epic walks. Some years ago I spent time training in the gym - the only benefit was that I met my old friend Pete there after we had not seen each other for over thirty years; he then accompanied me on thirty or so Munros, and we have been walking together ever-since. I decided that the best training for walking is walking, so for the last couple of years I have tried to walk on a modest, but regular basis, especially through the winters. So today's walk was a matter of continuing that concept to maintain a level of fitness, and avoid lack of stamina when I have longer days which I anticipate on resumption next Wednesday of my earlier backpacking trip. Such walks, I hasten to add, are not just for worshipping the god of fitness, but for pure enjoyment. Brother RR will not be amused by my atavistic use of Yorkshire dialect in the title to this post.

There is a large area north of the A685 Tebay to Kirkby Stephen road including Crosby Garrett Fell and Great Asby Scar (a superb limestone plateau) that I have only occasionally visited. There are many footpaths and tracks and  minor minor roads, and a mixture of moorland and fell providing superb peaceful walking.

I was off from the car at 9:00am tackling a couple of kilometres of road first and even that was enhanced by the now blooming heather which I reckon is my favourite flora. It was then onto mainly green tracks with enticing views into the northern end of the Howgills, and then a re-visit to Nettle Hill last visited 11th February 2010 with Pete during my trig point campaign. This time I was able to spot the house recently bought by a friend nestling under the northern Pennines exactly 9.91 miles away in a straight line.

Return up the valley of Potts Beck was typical of the limestone scenery that I love. I dawdled, stopped for munchies and coffee, and as I was climbing out of the valley I sat on large stone for perhaps ten minutes. I decided to listen intently - there was not a sound except for the odd insect buzzing past me, then I heard a melodious, distant clinking and tracked it down to the scree covered opposite valley side - a group of sheep were disturbing the scree as they tried to munch the lower leaves of some trees.

I was all too soon back to the car.



Just before turning off left onto grassy green tracks - looking into the northern end of the Howgills

Nettle Hill

Zoom to northern Pennines ten miles away

Typical old dales lanes with twisty dry-stone walls - walking at its best

Potts Beck- gurgling, tumbling and sometimes serene clear brown peat water

Looking back down Potts Beck 

Zoom to these guys clinking the limestone - a pleasant and melodious sound


Irritated of Arnside has a new little grumble.

TV commentators often use a phrase which takes the fancy of their colleagues and tout-à-coup they are all using it - the latest:

The commentator observing Mo Farah going for it - "There goes  Mo, doing what he does best"

On top of that every body is "going forward" these days.


  1. Just been looking at the maps, haven't been in that area for years either. The Coast to Coast came through but missed out Nettle Hill. Thanks for the idea - will have to revisit.
    Prior to our Pyrenees walk I packed a rucksack full of climbing ropes and weights and went around Fairsnape and Parlick, ended up with a hernia and had to postpone the trip for a year.

  2. bowlandclimber - Wonderful! That qualifies for "Comment of the Year."

  3. That sure is a lovely area going off your pics. I felt quite laid back just reading it.
    I agree with you, the best kind of training to do a long walk is to just set off.

  4. Lovely - you will be as alarmed as I was on learning that the combined resources of the newly enlarged Yorkshire Dales National Park, in whose blundering grip these areas now lie, the NT and the Friends of the Lake District are separately and severally aiming to 'raise the profile' of the so-called Westmorland Dales and encourage more visitors and tourists and the inevitable general spoliation of this currently unfrequented exquisite area. Enjoy whilst ye may.

  5. Alan R - Glad you agree about the training thing.


    gimmer - I almost wish I hadn't posted about it. There will be signs going up all over the place , don't do this and don't do that, and information boards. I can't see the point of trying to encourage people to visit the "countryside" if they are. not so inclined - let them continue to work out in the gym (or the pub).

    I never saw any litter on the whole walk - how long will that last?

  6. What a lovely post Conrad. National Parks always have to be 'doing something' when they should just leave things alone. But how else do those in charge justify their salaries? The Cairngorm National Park Authority is a disgrace.

    Enjoy your journey. I would have said 'trip' but thought better of it.