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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


Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Crosby Garrett

Monday 23rd. April 2018

As I wrote my previous post I Googled “Crosby Garrett cafés” and at a quick glance saw three listed by Trip Advisor which surprised me a little but I was more taken up with the concept of devising a circular walk taking in Crosby G halfway to indulge in the most promising of those three facilities since I had been thwarted by Crosby Ravensworth.

Route plotted, and just before setting off I decided to run through the three cafés more carefully. Typical of Trip Advisor all three turned out to be in Kirkby Stephen miles away from Crosby G. - if you searched them for a b and b someplace they give you examples many miles away from the requested location - useless for walkers.

Along with the aforementioned Crosby Ravensworth, there are no cafés in Crosby Garrett!

But the die was now cast. The planned walk looked attractive and there was a decent forecast, so off I went to start from Soulby - also caféless.

I suspect all the above was a bit of flannel implemented by my subconscious to  disguise the fact that my true motive for the walk was to conduct further trials with the newly acquired Zantec Ultra Light Mini Folding Chair.

Whatever the motive, after parking I set off wearing a shirt and a lightweight Paramo windproof jacket in consideration of the recent warm weather. Within a hundred yards I was shivering from a wicked, piercing wind from the west. I turned back to don a fleece and some gloves which by good fortune I had in the car.

The paths following Scandal Beck made for enjoyable walking, but with a good share of stiles which I am now finding only slightly less arduous.

At the furthest south I found a pleasant spot by the stream with ford and bridge and out came the new toy. I sat comfortably having coffee from my flask and a couple of fruity bars finding I could both descend onto, and arise from the seat without difficulty. I am sure this will now be carried permanently and I would even be prepared to take on the extra bit of weight for backpacking trips. I have Googled this product again and it appears to be unavailable at the moment, but some sites say "stock arriving soon" so if anybody is interested it may become available again - be prepared for a two week delivery time.

The rest of the walk was back on tarmac through Crosby Garrett, which is attractive and worth a visit, albeit caféless. There were only two cars passing me on the road back to Soulby. Deducting the time for the coffee stop I averaged just over 2 mph which is good for me in the circumstances and has me optimistic for further steady improvement.


Road bridge at Soulby

Soulby - village water pump (presumably unused)

Scandal Beck

Identify please - shaded, damp, riverside location - click to enlarge

Pleasant riverside walking

At first I thought the wooden bridge was attractive, then I noticed it is supported by a huge RSJ underneath.
Here I stopped for coffee and...

...deployment of the
Zantec Ultra Light Mini Folding Chair!
I placed it next to the rucksack for scale, but with it being in the foreground it appears taller than it is (actual height - 26cm.)

If you click to enlarge red dots show my route looking back towards Soulby

Entering Crosby Garrett

I don't think the lovely plastic windows go back quite that far

Crosby Garrett church perched on high


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    the Vale of Eden/Eden Valley is full of villages like these - sturdy limestone in the south or red sandstone buildings further north - that bridge was obviously designed by a Roman (or Romantic, perhaps) - sturdy hardly begins to describe it ! I imagine he (must have been 'he') was having a day off from designing all those railway viaducts.

  2. gimmer - thanks for that. I shall never ail from anything again.

  3. I wonder what scandal occurred at the beck?

  4. Gayle - Perhaps somebody was hung there for misinforming a walker that there was a café in Crosby Garrett?

    The spelling is as the OS map but I suspect it would make more sense with an e on the end.

  5. If you're looking for another walk in that area Conrad, there's a disused railway line through Smardale Gill nature reserve, which is not marked on the map as a path, but which is open and can be used. You can pick it up near Smardale Hall.

  6. Good to see you getting up to speed, Conrad, although that chair company don't seem to have sent the backrest to you...
    Shame on you for failing to recognise Butterbur!

  7. To avoid subsequent lawsuits fiction writers often invent names for their settings. I pride myself I can nearly always recognise these inventions as false; strangely, writers who claim to be masters of imagination are frequently lousy at this. John Braine is a typical example: Room At The Top is set in Warley. I was never convinced.

    But if I hadn't known better I'd have said you'd recently been passing through invented places: Crosby Garrett, Crosby Ravensworth, Finter Gill and Barbon could have all been locations in the worst movie I have ever seen - Brigadoon - which is also the name of a village that ebbs and flows with the mist. The nagging thought is that these names don't seem to be cognate with other surrounding place-names. We have often discoursed on the possibility that Yorkshire/Northern folk seem to have gone out of their way to come up with ugly titles. You know the list: Ruswarp, Sleights, Uggle Barnby, Luddenfoot, etc. But these stages on your various struggles have a kind of mincing, middle-class, south-east England quality to them. As if they'd been transported from the Cotswolds or the Weald of Kent.

    Could you please plan routes that pass through more authentically christened northern locations in future?

    I note that Gimmer may have touched on this subject but I can't be sure. There's a mystical taste to his most recent comment

  8. Phreerunner - the backrest might have been "the straw that broke the camel's back" in terms of excessive weight and I've got enough with my knees at the moment never mind my back. I can see the ever inventive Alan Rayner buying one of these and fabricating a backrest for it, perhaps from one of his now unused prototype camping stove shields.


    RR - I think J B Priestley suffered from the same malady of using unconvincing place names, but it is over half a century since I read Good Companions (I'm not likely to read it again.) I'm a bit flattered that you think my writings have at least adopted some sort of identifiable "quality."

    I agree with most of your selected examples of absurd place names, and in particular, like you, I am often puzzled by the ones whose nomenclature jars with the more obviously local.

    I can't promise anything about re-planning my routes to suit your whims -I'm not sure how you would handle it if I should return to Wales.

  9. Haha!
    'Constable Burton' always made me laugh when we passed through it...

  10. Phreerunner: How about Weston Beggard, just down the road from us?

  11. Can't beat that... as a child I had to put up with unimaginative names like 'Ironbridge'!

  12. I tend to take weight out of gear, not add to it! I’d probably take the legs off and invent something called a sit mat.

  13. Alan R - Having had both knees done I find it difficult to arise from a sit mat. This gizmo more or less solves that problem. I am not too bothered about weight on a day walk. On backpacking trips, I am now resigned to non-camping therefore ditching tent, sleeping bag, neo-air, and cooking gear, so again I am not as concerned about weight, but it will still need some consideration for that purpose..

  14. for the avoidance of doubt, i was alluding to the bilingual pun - not a common talent: nothing mystical about garlic - legendary, maybe . . .