This week’s Yorkshire Dales photo diary is jam-packed — with pictures rather than comment. The Yorkshire light can be particularly good at this time of year and even though I’ve been busy with other things, I’ve managed to get out for the odd hour or so to capture some superb conditions.
The sun and the cat got me up early Monday so a quick stroll around the village beckoned. The frontages of three-storey cottages on Langcliffe’s green glowed in the early morning light – it was chilly but bright. On the mill pond two ducks danced in the sun and an abandoned boat conjured up a Famous Five adventure.
In the afternoon I took a short journey into my past. In my early 20s I’d tried some caving and potholing – I wasn’t particularly taken by the sport… views are more thing. Anyway, I walked up to Alum Pot and Long Churn caves near Selside to jog my memory of some of those early underground exploits.
I’d not remembered the stunning views to be had from this spot. The sound of water echoing inside the black holes out on the lonely moors does nothing to entice me into taking up the sport again.
The evening promised a good sunset so I visited Winskill. I wasn’t disappointed. There are good silhouettes of the folding hills to be seen here, and the trees growing out of the limestone offer some special foregrounds.
The Yorkshire twilight on Wednesday was gorgeous, too. These trees – on the old road between Clapham and Ingleton – caught my eye as they glowed vividly in the low red sun.
As the sun began to set Moughton took on a red tinge, then it disappeared somewhere over Lancashire behind Robin Procter’s Scar.
I needed an hour away from the computer on Thursday so I headed up to Newby Head for a quick walk up the Pennine Bridleway which follows one of the former drovers route to Coal Road, with branches off to Arten Gill and Widdale.
Looking from here it’s tempting to assume that the name Widdale stems from it being a ‘wide dale’ but that would be wrong. The name means ‘wood dale’ for it was once covered with trees. The trees were gradually stripped out for grazing. Many will remember the dale being replanted with conifers but most of these have gone, too, apart from a few pockets which help with the spread of red squirrels across the area. New native trees are being planted now and future generations will be able to see Widdale nearer to how it was hundreds of years ago.
One hour turned into two as I stopped to admire the views in all directions… towards Dent, across Widdale to Dodd Fell and down to Wensleydale, and also to Penyghent and Ingleborough. Fine Yorkshire Dales all round me. That distant purple mist never really burnt off to leave a clear blue sky – but that can also be magical (see first pic in blog).
Peewits flying overhead, trying to guide me away from their nests, were making the only noise I heard.
Sadly, that’s all I had time for this week but mustn’t grumble – I could be stuck in the middle of London.