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


Saturday, 10 November 2018

The rain wins

Thursday walk with Pete - 8th November 2018 - Killington area 

How often have you turned back on a walk? We trudged along south into a biting cold wind and gloomy overcast sky. We reminisced about previous more serious walks we had done together over the years. In particular Pete reminded me of an ascent of Great Whernside and Buckden Pike when he said it was the only time he could remember when I had uncharacteristically suggested turning back. On that occasion Pete pointed out that we were not far off the first summit and might as well carry on. Rain was lashing sideways and wind moving us bodily. We pressed on to the summit of Buckden Pike which is a wallowing quagmire the size of half a football pitch - one of the most unwelcoming summits I have ever visited. We descended to Buckden and had a miserable rain soaked plod back down the road to Kettlewell.

After half an hour today we turned north west on a more sheltered road with wind now more favourable, but we could see rain coming up behind. We usually walk an hour each way if it is linear, but today was more circular. When the rain arrived it was heavy and the decision to abort twenty minutes early was unequivocally mutual.

At the start we passed the potential climbing slabs adjacent to the road that I have mentioned before, and this time I took more detailed photos. We were walking in the same area where the bio and fox-trap notices were seen last week. Earlier we had come across more evidence of the desire to keep the public out: a pair of huge iron gates padlocked with something that looked as though it had come from  Harry Houdini's paraphernalia.

We were glad to get back to Cafe Ambio for cake and warming tea.

Pete hunkering down - Great Whernside summit - 8th November 2010
 Coincidentally 8 years to the day from this post

We passed this dull looking nature reserve. ok if you are into finding sedges that can only be identified, one from the other by using a microscope ( sorry, botanists - I know that's cynical)


  1. Is that locked gate legal? It looks to be blocking a Public Right of Way.

  2. I image you two doing a limbo under that gate.

  3. JJ - to be fair it is not a public right of way, but one wonders what they are protecting to justify such an elaborate set up.


    Alan R - Maybe 30 years ago.

  4. I hope you are not setting a precedence by turning back in the face of adversity. I don't recognise that side of your character, maybe other circumstances came into play.
    I have had mutiny from my companions on similar days when I just battled on, perhaps foolishly, but all turned out well in the telling.
    In this morning's rain and a rather dubious route I felt my age and almost succumbed but fortuitously I heard the 'The Last Post' in the distance. What could be more stirring than that?
    On a completely different point are you trying to tempt me with yet more pictures of those slabs?

  5. BC - I presume you mean precedent? In that the case I hope the answer is "no." On this occasion I was taking into account the limited abilities and feelings of my companion I would add that there was no particular objective to aim for here, just a matter of walking for a prearranged length of time. When I am on my own I always want to see what's round the next bend, or arrive at my intended goal and that is embedded in my nature forever.

    As for the slabs I would be happy to go to the top snd throw you a top rope down.

    1. I stand corrected.
      Do those slabs benefit from any sunshine?

  6. Unknown - Not sure why you are named "Unknown" instead of "bowlandcimber."

    The slabs face north-west so I guess the sun will shine on them to some extent from mid-afternoon onwards.

  7. I've had a wander around that nature reserve, on a summer evening. It was hardly dull, I was eaten alive! The ground to the east is all access land and I'm inclined to have a gander at that at some point - hopefully I won't encounter any irate holiday cottage owners or biohazards.

  8. Mark - I am heartened to hear that someone has had value from the nature reserve - my comment was bit tongue on cheek.