Why I love the dramatic Dales sky

dales sky120 Dales sky photos in this week’s blog. In the Yorkshire Dales, where Man and Nature have produced a glorious painting for me to wander through, I gaze at the sky and realise I’m actually in a play. Not in a still-life masterpiece but a never-ending action drama where all the characters interact to create the unexpected. Mood and lighting constantly change. Acoustics stretch from eerie silences to frightening howls. All my senses are touched by the sky – yet, to it I am irrelevant.
Sheep was last week’s Dales theme for my blog and if you haven’t already sussed it, the sky is what I’m focussing on today. What follows is a selection of my sky shots all taken during 2016. Ribblesdale and the Three Peaks of Penyghent, Ingleborough and Whernside are featured along with my home village of Langcliffe.

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Yes, It’s enjoyable to bask under a clear blue sky during a sunny week in some exotic country but any longer and I’m itching to get back to an unpredictable Dales sky.

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The western Dales are particularly good for sky watching. Here the south-west wind from the Irish Sea and Morecambe Bay meets the first real obstacles in its path as well as any warmer inland air. Clouds bubble up rapidly – and often also clear quite quickly so the scene constantly changes.

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I was playing a form of Scrabble against the iPad the other evening when to my disgust it wouldn’t accept the word ‘thoil’. How could it possibly not recognise such an important Yorkshire word I demanded to know. Thoil was an oft-used word by my parents and therefore it should be in the iPad’s dictionary. I turned it off in a huff (yes, I was losing heavily at the time and I couldn’t thoil it).

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Have a great time over Christmas and New Year and make sure you get plenty of fresh Dales air.

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When the Dales are a tonic


After a few days working solidly on the next Countryman magazine I thought it was time to take a break and get out for a breath of air – and even though I only walked around the village this afternoon, I’m glad I did. The churchyard was beautifully carpeted in gold and brown, the beck full and lively, and the sky offered plenty of drama as can be seen in my photograph. Now I feel invigorated and ready for more work – bring it on!

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