Tag: National Trust

Hardcastle Crags

I felt the need to get out into the sunshine, now it is here, and get some long needed fresh air. Friday night we decided to head to Yorkshire, namely Hardcastle Crags and Gibson Mill. A beautiful place, part of the National Trusts many properties. The dogs had a great time, especially Mazikeen as she had places to swim, and ultimately get dirty rotten filthy by jumping into the becks which were full of silty runoff from the woods.

One of the things that struck me immediately as we started walking to Gibson Mill was the fields of bluebells. Everywhere we looked, it was blue. Once at the mill we wandered along trails and were struck by the overpowering smell of wild garlic, growing everywhere, and I do mean everywhere.

Fields of Bluebells
Gibson Mill

All in all, it was a five-mile walk, some climbing 345 feet in elevation. The sun was shining and as always I was sun-kissed in the end. We went the Weaving Shed Cafe for a coffee and a slice of cake before the last mile walk to the car. The girls were glad of the rest and their lunch and slept most of the way home.

Morning Walk

After a trip with M to the doctors and my checkup appointment with the dentist, we decided to take Harper to the Red Squirrel Reserve.

She had never been, and we had not been for several years either, even though it is quite literally on our doorstep, due to Lilu not being able to walk far we tended to go to the beach or the local fields. The place is owned by the National Trust which means that parking is £5 if you are not a member. We joined last week so for us, it is now free, which is great as they now own most of the coast and woods here. The National Trust do a great job with conservation and keeping the endangered species safe, apart from the red squirrels we also have Natterjack Toads, Sand Lizards, Northern Dune Tiger Beetle and we also have the rare Dune Helleborine

Most of the wildlife is getting ready for winter, and apart from the odd squirrel the only life seems to be the birds and other people walking their dogs, and even then the people are sparse too.  There was a field trip of school kids, but again, due to the size of the place, we did not see them again apart from them getting off their coach.

I like being in the woods, it is peaceful and you can hear the roar of the ocean in the near distance. I only had my iPhone with me so the photos I took are not the greatest, next time I will bring my DSLR to get better shots, but I thought I would share some of the sights we enjoy here. We are lucky as we have 22 miles of coast and about 5 miles of pinewoods to explore. In the winter the farmers graze their cattle in the woods which is always nice to see.

One part of the woods has quite a lot of folklore attached to it and with that stories of witchcraft, ghosts, and unidentified animals that have in the past caused the death and savagery of many sheep, all of which cannot be explained, and the locals will not go in the woods after dark.  There is a cottage right in the middle of the woods and the residents have reported strange goings-on at night, and do not venture out once the sun has set. I wonder if there is any truth to the lore or is it in fact just that, folklore?

One thing is for sure, we are very lucky having all this beauty on our doorstep, but I am a country boy so slightly bias.

 

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