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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


Monday, 2 December 2019

Thwarted - Wainwright's Way - Wray to Wray

1st. December 2019
Wainwright's Way - Wray to my previous furthest, just after Salter Fell Road (footpath bridge) and back to Wray
Approximately 5.5 miles

The plan:

Meet Hornby - 2 cars
Drive my car to my previous finish parking (SD 600 639)
Walk back to Hornby via permissive footpaths up Roeburn valley back to Wray and Hornby

Drive Hornby to halfway to my previous parking.
Aborted halfway after ascent of ice covered steep hill which would have been followed by steep descent on similar.

Decision: to avoid bringing BC''s car on these potentially dangerous roads - drive my car back to Wray and start walk from there.


Ascending the steep hill after leaving Hornby I only just made it on the ice by zig-zagging and we decided to return very carefully back to Wray.

We walked past the old school in Wray - a plaque commemorates its benefactor and I researched a bit more courtesy of this website -

The Trust dates back to 1684 when a local lad, made good, returned to the village. Captain Richard Pooley had risen through the ranks of Cromwell’s Round Heads during the English Civil War. He bequeathed a sum of money to be used for the benefit of the school. This was the basis of the current trust.
As at November 2014 the current trust chairman is Bob Smith, who will happily answer any queries anyone may have. Contact can be made by telephone, 015242 22079 or e-mail

Well it's good to read that some good came out of The Civil War even if it was from a Roundhead.

The Roeburn valley seems to be a secret location tightly nestled into itself and not much visible from any vantage points - we could hardly see it from higher up when we were later walking back along the road and looking down. This is a most attractive, unspoilt, extensive mixed broadleaf woodland and a delight to walk through. Most of the permissive paths are not shown on Ordnance Survey maps and in parts navigation is quite difficult and after the second half paths are marginal and quite hard going in places.

We had read about the bothy which is marked by OS and we diverted to go and have a look. The approach was over a heart stopping, swinging suspension bridge with ice on the wooden foot slats and we crossed with much laughter and fun - I wisely let BC go first.

The bothy is a large two storey stone built kind of barn but we thought it must originally have had a more sophisticated purpose. It is entered on the second floor by steps to access a dormitory with bunk beds and descent by a vertical iron ladder fixed to the wall to a living and kitchen room below which is pretty well equipped - all was clean and tidy. We were puzzled because we could find no other access to this bothy other than the footpath and perilous bridge by which we came and humping Calor gas bottles and other large heavy items would be arduous to say the least. I spent some time on the Internet trying to find out more but it seems to be a well kept secret.

Returning by the bridge we picked up the path which now ascends high into the woodland then out onto open fell-side before descending where we eventually found the footbridge where I had not crossed on my previous section opting to climb out back onto the road. We crossed the bridge back to that side and walked back on the path and then climbing back up fields to the road a bit further south than my previous exit. Walking back the surface was still frozen on the difficult road ascent from the morning and I was able to photograph my zig-zag tyre marks still there with no hint of there having been a thaw by the winter sun which had prevailed for the whole of our walk.

I thought this walk was going to conclude my Wainwright's Way but because of our altered plan I still have about one and half miles each way between Hornby and Wray to complete.

The old school in Wray

Just out of Wray before entering the wooded valley proper

I think I'll wait until I'm in the mood to consult the register

The bothy is almost visible in the distance. BC sets off...

...gets halfway and decides to return.
We then had a vote whether to proceed and we both went on to explore the bothy and then return to pick up our path again

The bothy.
I converted to b and w because the original photo had a lurid blue hue giving a false impression - this is much more representative of the chilly day

The living room/kitchen on the ground floor

BC descends from dormitory to ground floor

We returned over the bridge now with a bit more confidence but the swaying was still unnerving

On our returning walk out my zig-zag marks were still pristine on the road from the morning
Actual walking route in red.
Blue circular my previous section.
Green AW's Way GPX
Top blue iugnore
Yet another shot of Ingleborough.
The Panasonic TZ 80 is now refusing to focus  when on zoom and intermittently refusing to display the image in the viewfinder when the weather is cold - looks like another of those unsatisfactory guarantee claims looming? This is one of its better attempts at focusing.


  1. Well done on getting out so much in this cool weather, Conrad. It has been a pleasure to catch up, especially as you've been visiting places that are unfamiliar to me.

  2. Phreerunner - A few years ago my walking went more or less dormant in winter but since then I have kept it going which I think gives benefits both physical and mental.

  3. Ivestigate "Colour cast" adjustments in Photoshop next time

  4. Wray is a lovely spot, much of it was destroyed when the River Roeburn flooded in the '60's. I would imagine much of the upper valley was flooded out as well. Ive not visited the bothy but maybe it was part of the old quarry buildings. (just a guess, not fact).
    I think we will visit the valley next year at some point.

  5. My logistics took a node dive along with the temperature.

  6. A node is not the same as a nose.

  7. BC - Some say it is braver to turn back than proceed foolishly - I was in full agreement.

    I reckon a node may be something similar to a THWART?

  8. I think you have marked the bothy in the wrong place on your map. Should be below the W in Outhwaite Wood on the southwest side of the river.

  9. Alan R - I think there is a possible circular walk returning by a higher path to the east.

  10. Looking at the old victorian maps. The bothy could well have been part of the original Backsbottom farm which was demolished by the flood and moved to higher ground on the other side of the river.