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


Wednesday, 7 June 2023

Belated déjà vue

 Tuesday 6th June 2023 - Circuit from Crosby Ravensworth to Coalpit Hill

A few days ago I plotted another fairly easy six mile walking route from Crosby Ravensworth and off I went yesterday.

After reaching the turning point on the summit of Coalpit Hill I began to recognise the return part of the route.

Back at home research told me I had walked exactly the same whole route back on 4th August 2022! That was not long before my breathlessness became so obvious in October.

That post told me I had taken much more notice of my surroundings and taken more photographs and produced a half decent post. On this latest version I was more concerned with my breathlessness and took few photos but I did enjoy the walk despite my affliction, but it shows that some of the enjoyment is being eroded by my physical condition. It took me five and a half hours for the six miles.

I do not feel inclined to publish further details or photos and if anybody wants more they can look at the post from last August.

As for not remembering the previous excursion less than a year ago I feel embarrassed and also a tad concerned. Journalist Big Brother (Tone Deaf) who comments here from time to time I suspect would encourage me to enlarge either philosophically or in fantasy mode, of course with his 300 word advised limitation, and as I see I have now used just over 250 word I will leave it at that.


  1. Looking at the images you published taken on last year's trip, i fully understand why you hadn't remembered it - that's my usual reaction to walking in such terrain. Another reason might be that events of greater moment later that day erased the memory - 4th August 2022 ? i doubt it was re-reading the first lines of the Guns of August, of that day exactly 108 years earlier - maybe more troubling were the guns of 8 days later, which seem to have occupied your mind and erased memories of landscapes which, for me, have retained a dull sameness for nearly as long as those distant guns, although i know you always hold them brightly. Native upbringings always tell.

  2. bowlandclimber9 June 2023 at 11:48

    A lot of my walks recently have had a déjà vue component as I trudge the same paths up Longridge Fell.

  3. I'd like to put forward this post...

    ...and the comments thereon, as evidence that we both have previous when it comes to forgetting where we've been.

  4. Gayle - I read your post and began to wonder where was the coincidence until I got to part 2. Then something stirred in my memory when I read the name Dent and even now, for the FOURTH time, I had to read on before fully making the connection aided by my comment on that post.

  5. BC - Have you ever had a climbing experience where you realised halfway that you had done the route before?
    gimmer - As far as I understand you are saying that you don't favour moorland terrain and I do? If that is so I am surprised at your stance of which I was not aware after all these years. Perhaps you were soured by the masochism of the Lyke Wake W.

  6. bowlandclimber10 June 2023 at 07:45

    No, that would be strange. One tends to remember the moves on climbing routes, particularly the good ones or the desperate.

  7. Forgetfulness and old age seem to go hand in hand. Worse still, forgetfulness seems to increase with time, though there are always exceptions. I know whereof I speak given I am - no, let's ignore the bald figure, let's phrase it differently - in fact, three years short of becoming ninety. The odds on my making this age lengthen perceptibly every time my eye catches the main headline of the day's Daily Express. Serves me right for not closing my eyes.

    That's a little aside. A spurt of imagination.

    I have regularly recommended bloggers to consider using their imagination before they suggest - sometimes say outright - that there's nothing to post about today. Or go ahead and record - with tiny differences of detail - what they did the day before. True the material world is a trifle repetitive: getting up, becoming aware of bladder pressure, start cleaning teeth, break off to respond to aforesaid pressure, etc. But the world of the mind is much less restricted. Even the most opaque Brexiteer experiences thoughts which vary, often at breathtaking speed. Such thoughts may be regarded as the building blocks of imagination.

    Nor necessarily to create fantasy, as Sir Hugh mentions. For me that word carries connotations of fairies-in-the-dell. Imagination also works closer to home.

    Here's a partial example. I refer to age above and, almost immediately, I recognise age has sub-divisions. Some I'm familiar with, others await invention. So here we go:

    EGG AGE Includes time spent in the womb and later being fed from a bottle. We may think but we have no way of recalling those thoughts. Intellectually we're inert.

    REVELATORY AGE Onto that virgin hard disk that is our memory, information (some true, some false) pours in. More subtly and in fragments, comes the ability to process that information. But not to everyone. Those denied this skill enter a voie sans issue called SOCCER FAN AGE which frequently lasts until death.

    SEX AGE (also known as Adolescence). Powerful fumes from the gonads rise into the still highly receptive brain and blot out all other considerations. Extreme cases of this phase may find themselves in court on sordid charges.

    A fork in the road: MORTGAGE AGE/SENSE OF FUTURE AGE. Heavily slanted towards the former option. Mortgage-obsessed people enter a twenty-five year period of thought stagnation with peaks and troughs defined by prevailing interest rates. SOFA people often make exotic and restropectively foolish decisions about the way they will occupy themselves. They fail. A tiny percentage of SOFAs find fitting occupations but remain poor. An infinitesimally smaller percentage enjoy occupational and financial success

    I break off before tackling entrancing MIDDLE AGE which deserves at least 5000 words on its own. Vanity fighting irrefutable truth. But you get the idea. Imagination offers huge potential, even if I've hardly scratched the surface. Hey, you don't have to DO a thing as prelude to a post.

  8. bowlandclimber10 June 2023 at 19:12

    If you had to write a fantasy post where would it be?

  9. RR - Thanks for being so generous in exceeding your 300 word discipline. I have rarely written a whole post on some imagined topic but I do every now and then slip in some imaginative aside related to what I may have seen, or, for instance, recently positing on the physiological effects of a hot bath. After reading your missive I asked myself "where would all that imagination get you?" Of course it is the basis of all the arts in general, and if you don't believe they have value you likely qualify for "Soccer Fan Age." The trouble with trying to be creative is that there are always many others who are much more so, leading one to disillusionment at one's own inadequacy. I have tried to write some poetry (or, or whatever you may call it) which has given me a small amount of satisfaction. My imagination is now having me wander somewhat from your comment, but perhaps that's a good thing?
    BC - What about describing some sybarite doing Land's End to John 'o Groats supported daily by a luxury hospitality organisation finding choice accommodation each night with the ability for total flexibility, perhaps with requests along the way satisfied by drone deliveries. There could be pitfalls where expectations are not met and perhaps some surprise denouement shortly before John 'o G or maybe at the gift shop there?

    1. bowlandclimber11 June 2023 at 16:34

      Don't despise that J o' G's gift shop at the end of the road, I bought a postcard there for my old mate Mel on my completion which was mostly fantasy anyhow as it took me 50 years.
      The lass at the information desk had no idea how I could get a bus from there to wherever, but a bloke in a café did. Tourist Information at its best.
      Does the apostrophe move around in fantasy mode?
      Gimmer, I'm not sure whether we will achieve a hundred in this innings

  10. Many years (in blog terms) there was a competition of a sort between RR and ANO to achieve 100 comments on an originally rather obscure post of yours: it wandered off down many equally obscure 'culs de sac' where imagination was needed to relate not just to the original post but even to the preceding comment, and for the effort to remain even marginally 'relevant' to the theme.
    Once the self-assigned target was met, the trail really did become a cul de sac, and participation died without even a whimper.
    But it was probably the best 'thread' ever for engaging wit and imagination.
    I suspect this one might go this way - one has to hope . . . high time for wit and whimsy -
    no need for satire - public life provides that in overdose.
    But it has to have a hook to hang on, so, on another tack, personally, even though it would be tough to keep it up, despite the hedonism, I think that your imaginary luxury LEJOG would fail, before it emerged even from fairy land, out of futility, boredom and lack of challenge - perhaps the only driver of ambition and achievement: as is wrote: 'Fame is the Spur' - personal as well public (although, in the end, they are the same) - and be very hard to make a blog !

  11. Thank you all for responding; it happens to be a hobby-horse of mine and like many of that breed probably risks being over-ridden.

    As to BC's suggestion I tend to agree with Gimmer: there might be a tug-of-war between reality and what was being created. Even a mock version of a walk to The Albion might raise similar problems, imagination dragged down by the need to adhere to some sort of recognisable framework. Better a trip to Mars with the traveller grumbling about the unchanging scenery; the sublime reduced to the comically mundane. ("Bloody stars and it's not even Christmas.")

    Better to avoid a journey, though there's more than a germ of a good idea in BC's plot. Returning home from the USA we opted to take the car with us. Terrified by the thought of punitive baggage charges by air we booked SS France (a French luxo-liner) on its final journey to the knacker's yard. Therein I discovered claustrophobia at its worst. All advertisements for cruise holidays now make me queasy.

    I chose an abstract subject because it offered the greatest freedom for invention. It also allowed me to attack clichés, by twisting their tails into something more quizzical.

    I'd completely forgotten the 100-comments project; pleased that Gimmer remembered. What would I have to put into the blog search box to reveal the period?

  12. I conflated the contributions by Sir Hugh and BC, My apologies. That's the problem about long comments; in their vertico-linear world the bold-face bit at the beginning is sometimes hidden from view.

  13. bowlandclimber11 June 2023 at 17:15

    RR I'm often conflated so making this a short comment for your comprehension.

  14. BC: As a precaution I've had a little valve fitted. Any idea when the 100-comment project occurred?

  15. bowlandclimber11 June 2023 at 17:23

    It was all fantasy as far as I was concerned. (Sorry if I entered your email space.)

  16. BC - No way do I despise that shop. I bought the T shirt (actually a polo shirt) and some yeas later tracked them down to buy another and was treated on the phone and by email with friendliness and good service.
    gimmer (and all) - please continue with the themes of fantasy and /or imagination if you so wish, or any other subject. Gimmer,you have occasionally almost complained when I have strayed from The Great Outdoors in the past but this blog is open to any discussion within broad bounds of decency.

    1. bowlandclimber12 June 2023 at 06:25

      Yes you have had good wear out of those polo shirts.

  17. If anybody wants to see the 100 comments post it is here:

  18. As long ago as that - but of course two years were abolished by order of . . . project Fear ?
    BC's comment on not forgetting moves on some climbs echoes in the more hysterical caverns of my memory . Not infrequently, in early wakeful hours, I recall two 'non-crux' traverses, each well past the main items on the agenda, and shudder at the risks we took and the consequences of even the slightest slip in those days of tenuous belays, runners more useful in the imagination than the reality, and wonder how and what ever made us drift so gaily across those bulging faces.
    Worse than the bottomless gulp when looking at still images, let alone videos, of people climbing glassy skyscrapers or holdless cliffs.
    Climbing -for enjoyment or the post-climax euphoria ? did we ?

  19. Gimmer: I was the worst climber I knew, often giving up at the second move. Sir Hugh confirmed this judgment in a casual comment to a third party. And yet I continued to climb, after my fashion. Was it because climbing was fashionable? Hardly. Were easy climbs a way of disguising my terror at mildly risky routes? I think it's more complicated than that. I once took a young woman I fancied climbing; led her for goodness sake! Obviously these were easy climbs and I'm not sure she was impressed. On the return journey, from the pillion of my motorbike, she chided me for my lack of gutsiness. I was a better motorbiker than climber and after about ninety seconds she cried piteously for me to slow down. We think we know ourselves but often it's a glancing relationship.

    Parenethticallly, it's a long time since I saw a reference to Project Fear which, I think, deserves a cap p as well as a cap f. Strange what moral contortions that curious period brought about.

  20. bowlandclimber14 June 2023 at 18:24

    I hesitate to make a comment on your latest 100 comments reblog. The symmetry is perfect and 101 would do it an injustice, and all those shuttlecocks from RR and Phreerunner.
    After a few sterile, did I say that? they were enjoyable in their own right, modelling posts you are back to the 'nitty-gritty' of walking even enhanced by fantasy.
    It would be good to read of your Thursday walks with Pete in the same vein. Does he know your blog, he never comments - wise man?

  21. BC - I, hope to continue with a decent walk say about once per week. Today I had occasion to walk down to the village and incorporated that with another errand and ended up walking 3.5 miles versus my standard daily walk of 1.4 miles. Thursday walks with Pete are now less than a mile each way and nearly always now on oft repeated routes so there is not much to blog about as far as the walk itself is concerned Pete is non-tech although I have got him to sending messages on his iPhone - he is one of the breed that turn off their mobile phone when at home " save the battery!" Pete's wife is the sole operator of their PC and Pete would struggle to find his way round the mechanics of blog following and I don't think writing stuff is much in his line.

  22. bowlandclimber14 June 2023 at 19:58

    I'm sure you could come up with comments on your Thursday conversations in Café Ambio.
    I have a suggestion for an 'easy' walk with you from Levens Hall. Will be in touch.