Sedbergh Trip September 2018
15 people had an extended weekend holiday in Sedbergh, close to the Howgill Hills.
On Saturday, after driving up to the HF House (Thorns Hall) and having found the Howgills shrouded in mist we had a short walk up the Rawthey Valley to the east of the town, using an HF walk displayed in their ‘Discovery Point’. This set us up well for the excellent dinner we have come to expect from HF houses.
On Sunday the long walkers did the flagship walk of the Howgills, namely east up the Rawthey Valley again to Cautley Spout and up to Cautley Crag, then to The Calf, the summit of the Howgills, and Arant Haw.
The weather was still bad, but as the photos show we could see the surrounding country until we reached the staircase to the top of the Spout.
At the top, we took shelter from the horizontal rain in a sheep fold which, it transpired had been rebuilt by the sculptor Andy Goldsworthy, which explained the conical construction in one corner! The photo shows the fold in better weather!
We continued to the Calf, missing the summit by 50m due to taking the wrong path in the mist. Then down to Arant Haw where the mist cleared and there were long views to the Lakes and the Pennines. The photos below show the descent of Winder back to Sedbergh. On the right are Alison, Phil and Tony.
The medium walkers did the circuit west of Sedbergh following the Lune and Rawthey valleys, which is described below.
On Monday we drove to Dent and the long walkers went up Whernside, while the medium walkers walked directly from Dent back to Sedbergh, then took the long road home. On the left are Judith, Ed, Jean, David, Peter, Jo and Lesley.
A much slower ascent to a slightly higher summit, but the same weather – rain and mist on the top. After having met a couple coming back not wanting to face the mist and boggy conditions we were spurred to continue, navigation being aided by the tarns and the sharp ridge approaching the summit. Ed charged off to arrive first at the Trig Point, which is strangely positioned in a gap in a wall next to two windbreaks. Unfortunately the leeward shelter was already occupied, so we simply used the wall to shelter us during lunch.
Eventually the mist blew off and Judith spotted Ribblehead viaduct far below. Ed found treasure in the previously occupied windbreak. After lunch we crashed down the steep slope south of the summit. Having had enough by now everybody was happy to return to Dent by the road rather than the hillside or valley alternatives.
On Tuesday the remaining team members, having had enough of the high life did the Lune valley walk that the medium walkers had done on Sunday. Jean did the walk twice, but this time we went the other way round. The walk turned out to be a really attractive one. Initially it climbed slowly up Howgill Lane, with great views.
We then came to the disused Lune Viaduct on the old Low Gill to Clapham railway.
The walk then follows the Dales Way up the Rawthey valley, past the point where the Clough river joins, all rivers being full of ‘Yorkshire Tea’ coloured water after the recent rain.
The junction is marked by a statue of Jeremy Fisher.The return to Sedbergh was then via the grounds of the School.
On Wednesday Ed and Jean went home while Jo and Peter returned to Harrogate, Peter by bike via Dentdale. Phil, Judith and Alison did a short walk to Dowbiggin under Baugh Fell. Lunch was taken at Farfield Mill which had been visited on Saturday.
A great time was had, and thanks are due to Ed and Jean for organising the accommodation for the trip.
Lulworth Holiday - May 2018
21 people went on the holiday, which was based in the HF Holidays house at West Lulworth and lasted five days.
After travelling down on the Monday two short walks were done in the afternoon, both starting from Chaldon Herring (alias East Chaldon), which is locally famous for the Powys brothers, alas unknown elsewhere.
Phil, Stuart and John went south in a loop that included the coastal path and a sneaky little valley which required crossing (Photo), while Alison and Lesley went west.
On Tuesday, Tony, Ann, Anne, Alan and Pauline undertook the coastal walk west of Lulworth, which as predicted by the walk card provided by HF proved to be very steep up and down in some parts, requiring the time-honoured sport of bottom skiing to be undertaken.
The rest went to Kimmeridge Bay, using the road across Lulworth Ranges, which Mac had advised would be open even though the ranges were in use. The walk went from the quarry above Kimmeridge to Swyre Head, from which there was a good view back towards Lulworth........
then to Kingston, down to Houns Tout Cliff where we had lunch and Alison took a group photo. The views here were superb.
We returned along the coast to Kimmeridge Bay.
...... passing the Clavell Tower, a folly built in 1830 by he Reverend John Richards Clavell. It is now owned by the Landmark Trust and is available to let. It was moved 25m from the cliff edge in 2006-8, at a cost of £900,000.
Finally we faced the walk back up from the beach to the car park past the fossil museum. Ed and Jean dropped down from Swyre Head to the coast, and visited Lulworth Castle and its church on the way home.
Thanks to Alison for suggesting this walk which was, I think, the best walk of the holiday. In the evening we were entertained with very amusing Dorset-style songs and poems by a member of the one-time folk group The Yetties.
On Wednesday the walk was from Corfe Castle to Swanage with return by the Swanage Railway. There was a long and a short option. Both parties went east on the Purbeck Way along the ridge from Corfe to Godlington Hill, giving good views south across the Isle of Purbeck. The middle view shows Jo, Jenny and John, the right-hand one Alan, June and Judith.
The long walkers (Alison, Lesley, Jo and Peter) then went north-east across Godlington Heath via the Agglestone (seen left) to reach Studland.........
......then on the coastal path to reach Old Harry Rocks.
The short walkers went straight along the ridge to Ballard Point, where lunch was taken with an outstanding view of Poole Harbour (photo). A chap came with a radio-controlled model plane – luckily it was a glider so we didn’t suffer from the expected meeeeeeeeeh noise.
Ice creams were taken at Swanage station before the journey home. We did the HF quiz in the evening, but only came fourth in the national rankings.
On Thursday the various short walk options were abandoned, and all the walkers went to Weymouth to retrace the steps of Julia Bradbury’s railway walk from Portland Bill to Weymouth, in a walk suggested by Mac. Two bus rides got us to the south end of Portland, where we took the coastal path up the east side, winding through rocks past Rufus’ Castle (left).....
.......where there is a memorial stone celebrating the opening of the first part of the SW Coastal Path from here to Lulworth. We continued on the line of the old Easton and Church Hope Railway.
Eventually our way was blocked by the security fence of Portland Harbour and we had to climb up the cliff path to a rather attractive Portland stone chimney (which it turns out is a sewer vent!) and the Young Offenders' Institution, as dismal a place as its name suggests.
Things improved as we moved past the site of one of the old Victorian gun batteries to the viewpoint overlooking Chesil Beach and Weymouth......
...... and the real Prison, which is much more attractive than the YOI, being hidden inside a Victorian fort of 1861. While having lunch we noticed a motley crew of people climbing up under the fort opposite us, not dressed as for rambling, some with carrier bags. Ten minutes later, having gone out of sight they suddenly emerged from under our feet. They turned out to be supporters of the South West Coastal Path, a very valuable group indeed, not least in showing us how to get down!
The path down is again an old mineral railway, which stone block sleepers in evidence. The steep Merchant's Incline brought us to the harbour......
..... then an undistinguished path through modern developments (built for the Olympics, including this unusual multi-storey boat rack) to Chesil Beach. We were not helped by the sea mist which blotted out the view to East and West.
As we entered Weymouth some people chose to return to the cars on the bus, while the others completed the trip via the coastal path, Sandsfoot Castle (right), the Nothe park and Weymouth Harbour, one of the best parts of the walk.
Weymouth town is very picturesque.
This brought the organised part of the trip to a close, and everybody made their various ways home on Friday. Thanks are due to Ed for organising the accommodation.