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!

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


Sunday, 22 April 2018

Crosby Ravensworth

Friday 20th April 2018

This walk was nearly over before it started. A few hundred yards down the final approach road from the north I hit a pothole with incredible impact, but thanks to Kia's engineering there seemed to be no damage - phew!

I have often walked and cycled sections of the large area north from the River Lune, and east to Kirkby Stephen, then north to Appleby and bounded to the west by the M6. Recently I have taken to exploring it in more detail - much of this is limestone country with ancient lanes and sheep-cropped turf, often with extensive views to the south of The Howgills, with the northern Pennines to the east and the Lake District to the west, with endless variations of footpaths - magnificent walking country.

At just over seven miles this was the furthest I have walked since the knee operation. As always knees stiffened up in the evening, but were back to normal next morning - all very encouraging.

The walking was perfection except for the steep road climb out of Crosby Ravensworth followed by a short section of tedious farmers' fields and tarmac. At one point I missed the departure point from road to track and walked a couple of hundred yards round a bend in the road, but tout à coup, serendipity: a welcome bench at exactly the moment I wanted a rest and a swig of coffee. I had lunched earlier using my new acquisition which I hardly dare confess to but here it is:

I am fed up with the scenario where one says to oneself, "right, I'm going to stop for food or a rest" only to find oneself a mile further on not having seen any convenient spot to place one's bum. At only 293 grammes this item is light enough, certainly to carry for day walks. I intend to give it further trials and if it proves to be invaluable I may consider it for backpacking trips if and when I get back to them. It comes with a neat little bag making its somewhat cumbersome configuration easier to slot into the side pocket of a rucksack.

I bought this Zantec Ultra Light Mini Folding Chair through Amazon and it took weeks to deliver - I think it was shipped from China, but unfortunately I see it is now "no longer available."

This route was plotted so that Crosby Ravensworth would be halfway. I passed through here years ago with my Thursday pal Pete after an exhilarating three kilometre downhill mountain bike ride, and I was sure Crosby R had a café. *I was wrong! If anybody knows differently and I missed it I don't want to know.

* I've just discovered the cycle ride with Pete was to Crosby Garrett which abounds with cafés.

Definitely worth clicking to see these as slideshow
Perfect parking 

Ideal walking terrain

I was not sure if this feature was man-made or natural - the arrangement of the stones appeared to be natural

Left - High Street, the pointy one: Kidsty Pike

Wet Sleddale reservoir - scene of my recent walk and the Shap cement works in the foreground

Zoom to Jct. 39 on the M6. The car heading towards the pylons is on the way down into Shap village


More perfect walking - distant Howgills

Just before the steep road climb out of Crosby Ravensworth

Stone circle - looks like it was there before the wall


  1. Congrats on the 7 miles. That little project we have is on the horizon.
    You should have kept the seat secret and whipped it out in the most inhospitable picnic spot. I remember vaguely a rucksack you could buy where the metal back support frame could double as a temporary seat.
    I found a different one but the rucksack looks inadequate.

  2. BC - More field trials today. Report to follow.

  3. That looks to have been a lovely walk on pleasing terrain and good news that the knee tolerated it well.

    I'm very much liking the look of that stool. There are trips, like our current one, when we don't take deckchairs on the basis that they're more likely to be in the way than used. A little folding stool like that would be just the ticket and would stow away almosy unnoticed somewhere.

    1. Gayle -Just sat in café in Kirkby Stephen after further field trials, relevant post to follow.

  4. You'll need to stop shaving but you're now equipped to play the role you were born for:

    It is an ancient Mariner,
    And he stoppeth one of three.
    'By thy long grey beard and glittering eye,
    Now wherefore stopp'st thou me?

    Born elsewhere, the author eventually moved to the Lakes so that's OK. He is also credited with the first recorded descent of Scafell to Mickledore via Broad Stand. "Although," says Wiki somewhat sceptically, "this was more due to his getting lost than a keenness for mountaineering."

    I was wondering whether you might consider adding a begging bowl to your impedimenta. A bit too blatant? Another option might be copies of The Big Issue but the weight would be a factor.

    You could milk cows.

  5. RR - Your suggestions provoke a bit of thought. Although I don't mind meeting the odd fellow walkers or friendly farmers (the latter being a bit rare) most of my walks are intentionally over less populated terrain, so the begging bowl and Big Issue would not be very productive. The stool could be used to stand on to get a better viewpoint for photos, but, although it is fine to sit on I reckon it would be unstable in that mode leading to perhaps another broken arm - at least it could then be used as an improvised splint. As for milking cows I'm sorry to say that the only use I have for milk is in very small amounts with my tea, and I find it quite repulsive to drink on its own.

    I don't envy Mr. C making that descent. I have ascended it once and that was terrifying. On another occasion, with Gimmer, my lifelong pal, we arrived on the summit of Scafell in winter conditions from another direction, along with my springer spaniel Barney. Gimmer was all for descending by Broad Stand and even without the dog it would have been perilous - I flatly refused.

  6. I don't know this area very well Conrad, but am very drawn to it. Hopefully I'll get back there again at some point this year.