Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Saturday 30 May 2020

TGO Challenge - Wild Camps (No 5: 16 May 2007)

After camping at Borlum Farm campsite in Drumnadrochit, (the picture of which shows my tent in splendid isolation in a camping field) I got the ferry across Loch Ness and walked with Bob and Rose Cartwright for the whole of the 30 km day.
We went as far as the bridge shortly before Coignascallan, camping at NH725182. The top picture looks back up the valley to the west. Bob and Rose's tent was a Lightwave Ultra - similar, but at 2.3kg slightly heavier, to our Hilleberg Nallo2.
It was a lovely flat pitch, with a good water supply half a kilometre back along the road. There are lots of good camping spots in this area, many of them less exposed and more suitable for windy weather than our choice on this calm day.
The following morning, Bob and Rose left for Aviemore at 8:10, leaving me to take my time over a short day.
During our stay here, a picture was taken that shows me in my crocs in front of the Phoenix Phreerunner tent. I can't find that image, but it still appears as my 'Google' avatar:

Friday 29 May 2020

'Dufton and Some Pubs' - 12 to 14 October 1984

Here's another 'draught from the past'. A wet weekend in the Yorkshire Dales. Just for the record...
… and I appreciate the pictures are pretty crappy.
Dufton and Some Pubs 
Friday (JM)

JM got a lift to Cow Green and set off at 18:00, reached Maize Beck Ford at 19:50, and first tree down off High Cup Nick at 21:40. Camp at Dufton, dry out in Stag Inn (arrive 10:30, leave11:00). 

Saturday (JM)

Martin picked Dave up at 8:20.
Dave very sleepy. Meet JM at Dufton fountain at 10:15. Park car at Hilton, on the edge of the Warcop training area, and we heard some small arms fire and mortars. This means that the track up to Swarth Beck is OUT.
Set off at 10:50 for a field-wise wander (very gentle compared to last night).
John wasn't known for his photography. I don't even remember him having a camera!
Photo stop for a large pig.

Got lost in a wood (lots of toadstools). Arrived at Brampton where there is a pub, the New Inn. Bar meals (soft ain't we?), but Dave made it hard, by confusing the staff in having soup after the main course. The rest of us had a dessert course, and then we all had complicated coffee.

Via footpaths to Keld, then along a green lane to Long Marton. On the way, the distinctive whistle of a steam locomotive is heard: we all retrace our steps to see a steam train, very pretty blue, and streamlined (Sir Nigel Gresley). The carriages are British Rail Mk 2, and the buffet is a Pullman.

Eventually arrive at Long Marton, then via a footpath to Birks Head and so to Dufton.

Pitch tent at about 17:00. Leisurely meal and then to the Stag Innat 19:00.

Weather report: cloud is about 1500', so the tops can't be seen; light showers from time to time where we are. 

Sunday (DS)
Good night's kip had by all. Not bothered by noisy Yorkshiremen until morning (except Martin who claims they woke him up last night). Slow breakfast and we get away.
Martin attempts to sabotage the day's walk and proposes a namby pamby wimps' day out at the Bowes Museum, which according to John has pictures (according to Mike Brown) - also has armour, textiles, weapons, and a swan.

Decided however to go uphill, which was covered in mist. Looked at the military notice and red flag at the start of the route. According to this, anything that is airborne is an aircraft!! Ignored the notice (couldn't understand it) and set off up a slope to High Cup Nick. Hot and sweaty. Passed farmhouse selling coffee, but decided not to stop.

Coats on when we got to mist. At the top, took a bearing to travel south and thus avoid the 'Range Impact Area'. Eventually found a stream down and found it was heading to Murton and not to Harbour Flatt as anticipated.

Saw car in distance and so headed towards it through a military 'Shelled Area'. Precarious crossing of a stream via an iron bar that wobbled.
At the car, a playful cat provided amusement and photos.

Into Appleby for tea and chips and beans or peas. (No plates of chips only served for except for kids.)

Quite bright and sunny now. It was probably a good day down here. Unusual and no doubt useless sundial in the 'square'.

After food, went for a walk around Appleby. Very pleasant - took an hour. Left John at 4:15; he is getting a bus back home. M&D back to motorway via Tebay.
(JM) The bus arrived on time. It was very dark on Stainmore, but nice on the east side. A wet tea in Darlington while waiting for bus and so homewards.
Our route is shown above on a map slotted into the original album. (Click on the image to get a readable version.) Fast forward 34 years, and I was there again, this walk being undertaken (more or less) as a day walk from Dufton Youth Hostel. The report is here.

Thursday 28 May 2020

TGO Challenge - Wild Camps (No 4: 14 May 2007)

After passing through Cannich, I made my way towards the (treeless) Balmacaan Forest for my fourth night of wild camping, beside the infant River Enrick.
It was a lovely spot, in the vicinity of NH 354 248. I saw no Challengers on this day, other perhaps than a couple of grey-haired Scotsmen who passed at around 7:45 pm. They had another hour to go. I had stopped over three hours earlier...

I woke next day to a sunny morning. Here, I'm about to strike camp and load up my rucksack.

PS Apparently Google are discontinuing the 'classic' Blogger composition interface in favour of a new one. It's accessed via a button at the bottom left of the Blogger front page - I had to scroll down to find it. Then there's a plus sign on the bottom right of the next screen that you click on to make a new posting. I was then able to insert some images, but the working area of the screen was very small, and I couldn't readily spot the HTML button, so I abandoned the experiment and returned to 'classic' Blogger. At least I didn't have to start again as Blogger had remembered where I'd got up to using the new interface (or whatever it's called).
I'd be interested to know if anyone else had tried this new Blogger software...

Wednesday 27 May 2020

Lockdown in Timperley (continued 2)

For a few days recently, my morning bike ride passed this car on Walton Road. Memories of the days when my parents went through a series of Morris 1000 Travellers. If you can zoom in to the passenger seat you may surmise that the poor chap might have been there since the car was new, over 50 years ago!
You may have noticed that I've been digitising some old photo albums. Readers who aren't 'family' should be relieved to know that the family albums don't appear here - they have been circulated separately by way of Dropbox.
Here's a picture of the albums awaiting 'digitising' as of today. The pile of 'processed' albums (back in the wardrobe) is too small to warrant a picture - miniscule in comparison. I could be here for some time! And then there are the 1000s of slides...
We managed a bike ride to Didsbury on my son Mike's birthday, for a socially distanced coffee. We had given him the money for a camera, which he demonstrated for us by taking a couple of pictures using the '15mm' and the '45mm' settings. The picture below is using the '45' setting; the '15' setting gives a much wider angle. The Canon camera has wi-fi, so Mike was able to send us the pictures immediately after taking them.
Sue went shopping at our local garden centre yesterday. JJ's tomato plants have been joined by an assortment of products. This will keep her off the streets for some time. More photos will follow. The latest 'Churchill' cake, (can you spot it below?) will soon need to be replenished.
Meanwhile I drove over 200 miles yesterday in Sue's car, heading for Barnard Castle, but my eyesight is bad and I finished up in Eccleshall. That was convenient from my mum's point of view, as I could then bring her back to Manchester for her six weekly Lucentis injection at Optegra eye clinic. Two and a half hours later, I was on my way back to Barnard Castle Eccleshall. Luckily, my eyes held out for the journey home. I probably won't drive again for another six weeks. Just as well I sold my car shortly before Lockdown!

Tuesday 26 May 2020

TGO Challenge - Wild Camps (No 3: 13 May 2007)

This was my third night on my first Challenge. I'd planned to camp at Loch Meall a Mhadaidh, just below Sgorr na Diollaid, but it was early and boggy. So I continued towards Carn Gorm, a nearby Graham, and found this good spot in the vicinity of NH 323 351, at around 540 metres, near a lochan.
The spring water took a while to collect, using a 'V' shaped tent peg to create a tap, but it was delicious.
I enjoyed fine evening views from this fairly remote spot, looking towards tomorrow's route.

Monday 25 May 2020

'Ian's Indulgence' - 11 to 13 October 1985

Memories of a fine weekend in beautiful weather. Sadly, neither Dafydd nor John is able to share these reminiscences with the rest of us. We remember them fondly.
11 to 13 October 1985

Ian's Indulgence
Inch Events Inc, in association with D Wynn, organise a trip for JM as they haven't seen him for a while.

Accordingly, Inch and JM pitch up at Glenridding and adjourn to pub by 9:30. Inchsport is a new Alfa as the old one got crushed by an articulated lorry on the A1. Why didn't he send postcards from Peterborough Hospital?

Wynn, Scruby and Banfield leave Manchester 7:15 pm, Wynn's ancient charabanc being left at South Drive. Fish and chips in Penrith, then on to the campsite, and reach pub by 10:15 after leisurely pitching of tents.

Clear night, cool, but all have winter gear. 

Saturday (MB)

Still no cloud (all day).

Dafydd's sausages pervade the atmosphere and everyone lazily gets up. Only two or three other campers on the site, which is well equipped with new fittings and lots of hot water.
9:45 departure up Helvellyn via Mires Beck (Martin) Nab Crag (the rest) and Striding Edge (all). Martin finds a contouring path to the right at the end of Striding Edge, with a good view of Red Tarn and an exit to the summit.

Brew up / flask / water bottle / lunch stop, then on to Nethermost Pike then Dollywagon Pike.
Antics with delayed action photos. Dafydd and John were particularly perplexed.

Down to Grisedale Tarn for a lengthy break and observation of:
1. dogs which wouldn't cross the stream and had to be carried;
2. knackered noisy Geordies.

Martin tried to take an aquatic delayed action shot.
Looking back, from near Grisedale Tarn
On along a contouring path to the ridge north of Cofa Pike.

Martin lost the rest. On up Deepdale Hause to the summit of St Sunday Crag. Lots of people here, as everywhere, all day, due to superb weather.

Another variation: everyone except Dafydd and Martin also went up Fairfield.

II and JM recommend the pub grub in the Gloucester Arms in Penrith. Everyone ate sausages and beef risotto and stumbled down the track to the Glenridding Hotel for fizzy Websters.
Sunday (II) 

The Knott to Racecourse Hill the hard way

Dafydd gets the weak bladder award (04:00 hrs). Everyone else slept soundly until the sound of primuses and osmotic pressure forces everyone to get up. Decamped and loaded cars. In trying to extricate Martin's motor from the mire. Dafydd says "what gear is it in" trying to be clever. "Reverse" came the reply.
Anyhow, we parked at Hartsop and flogged up to Hayeswater.
Having warmed up, there was then a severe grind up to The Knott, followed by a discourse from JM on blue wardrobes (IBM - it's being mended) on top of the hill. It transpired that it was a stretcher case and not a mainframe computer.
Sensible people would have walked along High Street to Racecourse Hill from here. Nothing that logical would do. Haweswater looked attractive, so we made a traverse of Kidsty Pike to look for the reclusive Golden Eagles. They were hiding very well. We did spot four deer (Roe Deer we think), but no Goldies.
Down to Haweswater. It was delightful to sit in the sun watching Martin trying to take photos of a dilapidated bridge. A delightful spot.

(MB) Continued from the bridge over Riggindale Beck across The Rigg, and headed directly up Heron Crag / Rough Crag and eventually up Long Stile to the summit of High Street (828m). Hazy but fine and warm but not too hot.
Good view back down the ridge. Lots of cars at the Mardale Beck end of Haweswater - out of proportion with the number of people seen.
Here's the last photo from the trip - Dafydd in typical pose on the top of High Street.
A race against mist on Racecourse Hill was followed by a swift descent to Threshthwaite Mouth and thence down Pasture Beck and back to Hartsop.

Pleasant weather again.

Took the Windermere route home and found lots of traffic jams, the longest one caused by a farmer taking several cows for a long hike.

Concluded with an Indian meal at the Asia before Martin went to High Wycombe.
Above is an approximation of both days' routes. The statistics are pretty much identical - 21 km, with about 1300 metres ascent. Click on the image for a better version.