Solstice Wanderings in Cumbria – Tuff

Great Langdale Cup Marked Stone – Dungeon Ghyll – Harrison Stickle – Loft Crag – Pike of Stickle – Martcrag Moor – Stake Pass – Mickleden – Old Dungeon Ghyll – Copt Howe – Mayburgh Henge 21.06.2019

A cup-marked boulder at the foot of the Side Pike pass to Little Langdale.

I don’t have a great head for heights, the narrow scramble between Harrison Stickle and Dungeon Ghyll makes me question my choice of route, to withdraw would be to fail.

There are two genii, which nature gave us as companions throughout life. The one, sociable and lovely, shortens the laborious journey for us through its lively play, makes the fetters of necessity light for us, and leads us amidst joy and jest up to the dangerous places, where we must act as pure spirits and lay aside everything bodily, as to cognition of truth and performance of duty. Here it abandons us, for only the world of sense is its province, beyond this its earthly wings can not carry it. But now the other one steps up, earnest and silent, and with stout arm it carries us over the dizzying depth. On the sublime by Friedrich Schiller. 1801

 Staring down the gulley to the valley below, then scrambling to the summit of the Pike of Stickle, terrifying and exhilarating.

Chasing clouds across the fells

Tracking  Prehistoric Cairns along Mickleden

Flakes of Tuff carried down the scree from the Neolithic quarries on the Pike of Stickle

On leaving, I visit the prehistoric carved boulders of Copt Howe

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Mayburgh Henge, generally my starting and finishing point when visiting Cumbria.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Strong Hill – Richmond

Dodgson attended Richmond Grammar School for a year while his father was vicar of Croft

Hunting for erratics amongst the river-worn cobbles of Frenchgate.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Shap granite

Zealous and Consistent members

The town has two subterranean legends. One tells of how a potter named Thompson discovered a cave beneath the castle. In the cave was a round table around which were a group of sleeping knights. Upon the table was a great sword and a horn. Thompson reached for the horn, waking knights from their sleep. Thompson fled and as he ran he heard a voice behind him say..

Potter Thompson, Potter Thompson!

If thou hadst drawn the sword or blown the horn,

Thou hadst been the luckiest man e’er was born.”

The second legend concerns a tunnel that runs from the castle to Easby Abbey. The tunnel was supposed to have been dug to allow the abbots to escape from the marauding Scots. Some soldiers wanted to explore the tunnel but found it too narrow. They sent a drummer boy into the passage and instructed him to beat his drum as he walked, allowing the soldiers to track his progress from the surface.  At a point between the castle and the abbey the drum fell silent and the boy was never seen again.

A stone has been erected on the riverside path to mark the point where the drumming ceased. The local legend is that the drummer boy’s ghost still walks the passage and occasionally his drum can still be heard beating.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

23

Markse Road, Ox Close, Wilton Bank, Pithills, Hob Hill, Four Lanes End, Village Wood, Beacon Moor, Errington Wood, Marske Quarry, Falkland Walk, Quarry Lane, Plummer’s Bank,

The edgelands are slowly dissolving

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

A dream job

map

Were the Hobs driven out by the ironstone miners or do they survive in the abandoned galleries beneath the Anglian burial ground?

When it snows, the children of Saltburn invade the golf course to sledge the banks. The greenkeepers don’t like the snow.

The path ends at the road, the road has no pavement, we are forced to walk in the gutters.

An aerial ropeway once spanned the low valley.

The rain arrives

 I collect a few flint fragments from the field margin including a small worked tool.

The terrier and I explore the woods and sandstone quarry. We disturb some deer, the terrier’s eyesight is not so good, he decides not to give chase. A pair of charcoal kilns lie in the quarry bottom waiting for spring to arrive

The quarry is much older than the ironstone workings futher down the slope. Sandstone from the quarry was used in local buildings and walls. The weathered quarry walls contain a number of niches.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Wet through and cold we head home along Quarry Lane.

Upleatham [Upelider DB, Uplithum c1150 Whitby, 1272 Ipm]. ‘Upper slopes.’ Cf. KIRKLEATHAM. U- is higher than Kirkleatham. Uplider DB seems to be a Scandanavianized form, ON Upphlioir.  The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-Names. Eilert Ekwall 1974

soundtrack