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


Monday, 28 January 2019

OS Grid 38 (northing) SD 305 380 to TA 269 379 - Day 3

Sunday 27th January 2019 Inskip (east) to Longridge

A bright sunny day for this one, but a fierce cold wind most of the time fortunately coming from behind. That was fortuitous because this had been a longer walk at around ten miles. If we had been battling into that wind it would have been much more arduous.

I managed to drop the camera in some mud causing the  lens cover to malfunction so it was stowed away for later attention and no further photos taken. I am sure BC' will have more to look at when he posts - CLICK HERE

Since getting home I have tried to sort the camera to no avail; it is still within its two year guarantee period, so I'm off to Wilkinson's Cameras in Kendal where I made the purchase after writing this. Further report to follow. I will be surprised if I get any satisfaction.

Again we had many stiles, and at one point a broken stile dropped into a flooded ditch which would have been impossible to negotiate without full immersion, and anyway pointless. Pointless because the land on the other side where our public footpath went had been divided and fenced into approximately 200 metre squares with no access or exit points. We backtracked towards the farm and from the farm track we crawled under the fencing commando style. After that we found we could unhook the cording and cross quite easily on the subsequent fencing, but even so blatant disregard for a public footpath had been exercised here.  Near Kidsnape Farm - approx. SD 577 386

As always this had been an enjoyable day in good company with Bowland Climber with interesting navigation and challenges. We were now moving into  more attractive countryside.

The Plough at Eaves (Cuddy Hill)

Mud on lens after I had dropped the camera. 

One of many many stiles

North up the Lancaster Canal

Any guesses?

Central blue line is OS 38 Northing. Pink lines are 1 mile north and south

Saturday, 26 January 2019

Grange-over-Sands prom (and macro)

Thursday walk with Pete - 24th January 2019 - The promenade at Grange-over-Sands

This post should have been accompanied by photos of all the shrubs still showing flower in the extensive and well established beds down the front at Grange.

I tried close up macro and telephoto macro but the results were so dire I would be ashamed to show them here - I must be doing something wrong? I have had the Panasonic TZ100 for over a year and can't say I am satisfied with it. All the photos, landscape or otherwise, lack sharpness. OK, I m only using the Intelligent Auto setting most of the time. By amateur photography standards this is not a cheap camera. and it should be better than this. I get the impression that the only solution is to trade up from this compact to a bridge camera but I just don't want to have that extra bulk and weight.

We did a there snd back down the prom with restricted views across the bay through the dismal murk with a chilling wind. We have had snow recently and there was the risk of ice which Pete was concerned about, hence this benign route - the fears of ice turned out to be unfounded.

We are seeing more egrets these days around here and I managed to get a full zoom shot which was a bonus, but whatever, these days are not so much about the walking, rather getting together with an old friend and having a natter.

Here are the remaining photos that have passed my censorship:


My egret - full 12 x zoom

We walked beyond the end of the prom and saw these two which again are taken on zoom because closer access was not possible. I reckon they are not rare but they may pose more of a challenge for Alan in view of their camouflage

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

OS Grid 38 (northing) SD 305 380 to TA 269 379 - Day 2

Sunday 20th January 2019 - Singleton to Inskip (west)

Walking with a friend who also writes their own blog risks repetition for people who are followers of both. As we walk we tend to take similar photos of the same  points of interest, and our posts will inevitably include similar accounts of incidents.

Today's walk was covered by Bowland Climber in his post which conveys a vivid account of the whole walk and I recommend this to my readers here, and also use it as an excuse to omit an inferior detailed account myself.


My thoughts on this trip major on the number of stiles. I am sure I don't exaggerate if I say there were more than twenty. With my twin knee replacements stiles are more of a challenge coupled with a heightened fear of slipping or falling. Many stiles today were in bad repair with wobbly planks, often coated with green slippery mould, ergonomically too high to conquer with comfort, and in perhaps a majority of cases doubled due to stream or ditch crossings. BC is very patient when I tackle these obstacles, taking more time than sprightly, less than seventy year olds.

For  a couple of years now I have walked in Gortex or similar lined waterproof trail shoes rather than boots only using the latter if I anticipate pathless, rough, moorland terrain, and I have  rarely suffered wet feet. It is surprising how that can be achieved with a  little care. Today we had several gloopy sections and one in particular where you may see a photo of of me on BC's post looking as though I am on the point of sinking up to my waist, but despite appearances on the photo my feet remained dry in my Mountain Warehouse trail shoes.

Despite my grumpy stile comments and the muddy conditions the walk was enjoyable in good company and the route is improving as we move further east.

Old fire station in Singleton from the days when the village was part of the Miller family  estate.

The Millers were wealthy cotton mill owners

The white panels were decorated in an embossed fashion. Here I have altered the lighting to  try and enhance that feature (click photo to enlarge)

You had to be jack-of-all-trades to be a fireman in those days.
I wouldn't fancy my chances of catching the horse before the house had burned down.

Singleton church. The congregation were just emerging from Sunday service as we passed

BC negotiates one of the old parish gates - a welcome relief from the more frequent stiles

This less than attractive modern house was built next to what could have been  a pleasantly restored seventeenth century period thatched cottage. The cottage had been bodged about with awful modern windows and a lot of amateurish repair work, then apparently abandoned. What the plans are we could only guess but at the moment the combination of the two produced an unsightly mess.

One of the many rickety double stile/bridges encountered on this walk

Blue line is our "straight line" - pink is the one mile north parameter

Friday, 18 January 2019

Mill Side and Strava

Thursday walk with Pete - 17th January 2019 - Mill Side/Witherslack

We returned to do a variation on last week's walk around Mill Side and Witherslack. I mentioned previously sbout hsving the Strava app recommended to me and I had another go with it.

 Strava measured at 4.4 miles. Back home I measured carefully with Memory Map on OS 1:25000 which gave 4.04 miles. That is an 8.9%  increase. I am reasonably confident, from years of experience that MM gives a pretty accurate result

Below is a much enlarged shot of part of our there and back route that Strava plotted so you see two intertwined  routes caused I suppose, by our deviations from one side of the road to the other. BUT some of those lines go well off the road into surrounding countryside which we certainly didn’t do. At the end of the walk Strava has also plotted a long straight line into the countryside from our stopping point which is inexplicable. The only reason I can think of for the other exaggerated diversions is the fluctuating measure of accuracy from GPS. Whatever the reasons I suggest you would be living in Fools Paradise if you were seriously/competitively comparing your times against established records or the times of others using different technology to measure their performance.


I Googled the name on the nameplate of this smaller machine. Some kind of drill. The firm are still going but taken over by a Japanese company. I also found this You Tube video from somebody finding one of these in a shed

Monday, 14 January 2019


I  have almost no knowledge of music technology so what I write here must rely, perhaps more interestingly, on my own naive descriptions.

I have enjoyed Shostakovich for many years but never quite got round seriously to his quartets. I put the Borodin Quartet version on my Christmas wish list. I would add that I have read The Noise of Time, Julian Barnes, and am well acquainted with S’s background. That is  a book that I would wholeheartedly recommend to anyone regardless of taste in music.

Tonight, after a drop of red and and shot (or two) of Aberdour, in a darkened room, I listened to disc number three. I  had earlier listened to number four. If you hanker after something more modern than the Beethoven quartets or similar, for which I have great affection,, and you can’t stand the really modern stuff that sounds like a mixture of squeaky chalk on the blackboard and people hurling pots and pans in the kitchen go for Shosta. The music is endlessly inventive, and in the more orchestral works many instruments rarely heard with other composers get a good “blow.” There is nearly always melody or at least a hint of that, and mostly there is an appealing beat, often reminiscent of the swinging Basie. There are wild passages where I found myself imagining the patterns on my tartan carpet merging, synching, and interacting, and others where I felt as though I was pleasantly inside my fast revolving tumble dryer. All that is mixed with slow movements of delicious romantic quartet stuff and moving solos. You may think I was on something harder than a drop of single malt?

I have not researched interpretation of the individual works - to me that doesn’t seem to matter, and I am not particularly interested in pretentious guesswork from so called experts, but I suppose that is my loss and I know I am missing subtleties that would be more apparent to those with technical knowledge, but sometimes less knowledge can leave one with a more valuable sense of wonderment.

Sunday, 13 January 2019

OS Grid 38 (northing) SD 305 380 to TA 269 379 - Day 1

Saturday 12th January 2019 Day One - Blackpool North Shore to Singleton

A new project is underway with my friend Bowland Climber. We have identified the OS northing line 38 which goes from North Shore Blackpool to East Newton (TA 268 378) on the east coast.

We are not too sure whether we will ever complete it but we have made a start.

Two cars were left at Singleton. and with BC's command of bus timetables and the like we were on a bus into Blackpool just after 9:30 (after the 9:0am deadline for bus pass use).

Ten minutes walking in blustery wind had us on the front at North Shore. I recently had an Internet blur moment (click to buy with one click) and bought a new Tilley hat. It was undergoing its first trial. Within minutes it had blown off resulting in what might have been the record for shortest time for new hat ownership, but retrieval was happily achieved. I will now need to sort out the complicated tightening and double chin strap system - for today it was stuffed into my rucksack and replaced by a serendipitously carried beanie.

We walked past depressing down market guest houses poignantly matching the mood of the dismal windy weather.

Further on we were having slight navigation problems walking through second rate industrial estates until we eventually emerged onto a short bit of footpath. That initially ran alongside a housing estate with a drainage stream between our path and the houses. The residents had used the ditch as a rubbish dump chucking mattresses and broken furniture and all kinds of other rubbish over their own garden fences - what a mess,  and how anybody could create such unpleasantness actually adjacent to their own home I can't comprehend.

Whilst crossing the hinterland between Blackpool and Poulton we met a dog walker with two German Shepherd type dogs - they were both rescue animals, one had cigarette burns on it when he went to take it over. He was a pleasant guy.

The housing quality kept improving as we came into the suburbs of Poulton-le-Fylde. As we were rounding a residential street corner on a footpath with a blind bend to the right I discovered a new way of getting an offer of a tea brew - take note from hereon Gayle and Mick. I stepped off the kerb whilst trying to see round the corner for oncoming traffic and went full length onto the road banging and slightly cutting my head, spraining my thumb, and knocking a lens out of my glasses.

Football fans who have absorbed the clandestine procedure for "diving" without self injury may be able to put this technique to good use?

We were immediately surrounded by helpers and a young couple who lived in the house on the corner were just driving in through their massive security gates in their large four-by-four and insisted we should go into their garden and sit down and be plied with tea. As it happened we had just been looking for somewhere to stop for lunch so there we were in comfortable chairs lunching sway.

Thanks to the kindness of my rescuers.

We had bit more track and footpath after this to get back to our cars at Singleton. I stopped taking photos after the fall.

Wild and windy weather going north up the front at Blackpool

North Shore - we went inland from here past many dreary guest houses

A rather strange memorial for members of the various emergency services

Beauford sold these as kit cars. I think they have now re-grouped to just providing these for wedding hire. Not the most attractive of kit cars I have come across 

Crossing the railway near Layton station. I Googled The Rt. Hon. Earl but found little of interest - I was just hoping he may have later been involved n some scandal or other

One of the short sections of footpath on this urban day

Rubbish obviously chucked over the fences from the houses - and below...

I don't look very happy about my free brew. I think I was pulling a face at the same time as chewing on my paté sandwich

We are now allowing ourselves one mile either side of our line giving us a bit more freedom to plot the route

Friday, 11 January 2019

Mill Side

Thursday walk with Pete - 10th January 2018 -  Mill Side circular.

Snowdrops catkins and primrose gave us an early promise of  spring.

I forgot to bring my camera so these photos were taken with the iPhone - they have since been messed about a bit with Photoshop Elements. I can see little difference between camera and phone. But, I have become so used to the camera I would be reluctant to change. The iPhone makes it far too easy to use video mode or bursts or whatever by mistake and it is not ergonomically designed to be held comfortably for taking photos, and downloading to my desktop is nothing like as user friendly.

Daughter Jill recently inveigled me into downloading the Strava app onto my iPhone. This purports to measure the distance, time, speed and ascent of a walk and can also interact with other users who you elect to be in your group operating in a similar way to Facebook. I  recorded this walk and Strava said 2.6 miles. I then measured the route on Memory Map 1:25 carefully and came up with 2.22 miles - that is a 12.6% increase. I have always suspected that these tracking devices are not particularly accurate and other users may wish to note. That discrepancy would be the best part of two miles on a fifteen mile walk. I have not checked the other stats recorded by Strava but the above does not fill me with confidence for their accuracy.

My commenter and friend Gimmer may remember this venue

We have walked past here before  when I noted this pleasing little dell and this time took trouble to take a photo

What a gnarly tree

iPhone zoom to Whitbarrow

A tractor beast for Alan