We joined my sister and kids for a walk along the river Hodder into Dunsop Bridge, a village that claims to be at the very centre of the UK. Lots of Autumn colours and plenty of fungi finds too. We parked by the stone bridge over the river just outside Whitewell.
This walk was a very enjoyable 4 miles, with a brew and biscuits bought from Puddleducks Tea Room in the village,which is presently operating as a take away. I think we will return 🙂
Sunday was a sunny day surprise, so a walk from home beckoned. The suggestion of a wander to the nearby village of Waddington …and lunch, was an attractive proposition. We set off late morning, passing through the grounds of Clitheroe Castle, by the River Ribble and then along the road to our destination.
Apparently Waddington is named after its founder, an 8th century Anglo-Saxon chieftain called Wadda. This pretty village has probably won the accolade of Lancashire’s Best Kept Village, more than any other. The picturesque coronation gardens might have something to do with it.
There are three pubs in the village, my personal favourite being The Lower Buck, which is a friendly welcoming independent watering hole. Does delicious pub grub too, so a perfect place for lunch. It was warm enough to sit outside in the sunshine.
After dinner we headed home via the country lane to Low Moor and back into Clitheroe.
Although I’ve posted about The Tolkien Trail on my blog before, I walked it again recently with my sister and family, and thought it worth another look. Undoubtedly this tranquil area of Lancashire inspired J. R. R. Tolkien , he often stayed here whilst visiting his son John who attended Stonyhurst College. The Lord Of The Rings author enjoyed walking in the lovely leafy Hurst Green countryside and local place names and landmarks made it into his writings.
On this occasion we followed the route starting at The Shireburn Arms , the 17th century Inn was named after the rich land owning Shireburn family. A river Shirebourn features in The Lord Of The Rings.
Our walk very nearly got abandoned. At this point we were meant to be following the riverside but a herd of frisky cows showed too much interest in Hugo the Labrador. We made a hasty retreat up a hill and managed to rejoin the river later.
The heavens kept opening ( and the sun shone too! ) as we followed the trail. To be honest the walkcould really benefit from a few Lord of the Rings inspired sculptures or scribbles along the route, I reckon. Anyway above is Hacking Hall from where the Hacking Ferry boat still operated in Tolkien’s time at Stonyhurst. The ferry was possibly the inspiration for his ‘ Bucklebury Ferry’ .
Cromwell’s Bridge over the river Hodder may have been the inspiration for Tolkien’s ‘ Brandywine’ bridge. It is named after Oliver Cromwell ,who along with his troops rode over the skinny stone structure, on their way from Gisburn to The Battle of Preston. We followed the riverside up through shady woodland past Hodder court.
Eventually we ended up in the grounds of Stonyhurst college, though I didn’t manage to get many photos. And then back to the car parked in Hurst Green. The trail covered 6 or 7 miles in total.
I must confess I have never read any Tolkien, though I enjoyed watching The Lord Of The Rings films. When walking the trail you probably need to research the areas connections beforehand, as there is no signage or information on the route. Nevertheless this was an enjoyable hike around a lovely area. 🥾
I have been noticing lately how lovely a local field is looking. All-sorts of flowers have been popping up this year. Makes me wonder if someone has been scattering seeds? The plants have been absolutely buzzing with bees and grasshoppers. Meadow Brown’s , Ringlets and Skippers are flying in abundance. I’m eager to see what else will turn up over the Summer. Will keep you posted. 😘
There could be more clover than grass in the field and they smell really sweet, especially in the sunshine after a shower.
Pops of colour are certainly provided by the burnt orange blooms of the Orange Hawkweed, which is also known as Devils Paintbrush and Fox & Cubs.
I think this is a member of the Crane’s -bill family , maybe Druce’s Cranes-Bill.
Tutsan is the largest of the St John’s Wort flowering plants. I was quite surprised to find it amongst the vegetation. I like how there are both flowers and berries.
I noticed a couple of Silver Y Moths fluttering around the thistles. They are migrant moths that fly day and night and can be identified by the metallic y on each wing.
Love-in-a-mist is not a wildflower, so I’m not sure how this bloom ended up here. I love it’s delicate and intricate design.
By the brook a Yarrow peeps , it’s leaves are feathery. In the past this plant was used on bloody wounds, but sticking it up your nose causes nosebleeds apparently. 🙄
Skippers are seen resting on buttercups and darting from flower to flower. They are tiny butterflies, however I cannot tell whether they are the large or small species.
In the grass I spy Fairy Flax which looks like it should be in a fairies garden.
Along with ringlets there are lots of Meadow Browns in the field. They are very fond of the thistles. 🙂
So that’s all for now. There are foxgloves and teasel but I will save them for another post. 🙂
Recent times have given me opportunity to explore new walks in my local area and also revisit places from my past. Although I live in a small market town, I grew up in the countryside. Of course at 17 I was only to happy to move away to ‘the big City’ , that’s what Clitheroe felt like to a country bumpkin like me back then. 🙂 I will never forget my farming roots though , as much as I love living somewhere with shops, pubs and friends, I do still feel at home clomping round the fields.
This is a walk from Clitheroe, through the pretty village of Pendleton, passing the farm I grew up on at the foot of Pendle Hill and taking in the small village of Worston. Most of the route has featured on my blog before at various times, but there’s usually something new to spot.
We found a peaceful moorland walk on Sunday. I guess it was so quiet because of the drizzly weather. It soon fined up though and we happily abandoned our waterproof jackets. Yay!
Our walk started from a canal side car park near the Anchor Inn at Salterforth near Barnoldswick. This isn’t an area we have explored before and despite having a map and walking book we did get a bit lost ( shocker! ) but it all worked out ok in the end.
The route headed up into the rugged moorland of Weets Hill where there are fantastic views and even some unusual art work. Here are some images from our 6.5 mile hike.
This walk was definitely all about the views , the wildlife ( we were serenaded by the continuous chatter of pippits and skylarks) and those unforgettable sculptures at Duck pond farm.
Walking Book – Walking in the Forest of Bowland and Pendle by Terry Marsh.
Just a quick post featuring a walk today from home. We set out about 8 am hoping to miss the heat, it was already getting warm early on. Luckily for Hugo this is another route taking in the river Ribble ,so he had plenty of opportunities for paddles and swims.
Today’s walk is a circular route from Clitheroe to Mitton and back. It’s one we have walked a few times over the years.
By midday today it was scorching hot. I had taken our labrador for a riverside walk early morning ( saw my first dragonfly of the year) and then decided to head out somewhere unaccompanied. I love Hugo but he gets a little impatient when I become distracted by butterflies. 🙂
Salthill Quarry Nature Reserve is one of two nature reserves in my home town. A mixture of limestone grassland and shady woodland, the reserve is a haven for wild flowers and birds such as black caps and bullfinches. Which I never see ! Haha. Today my nemesis bird ( a gloriously colourful jay) posed for several photographs, promptly flying off cackling before I could get him into focus.
I enjoyed my walk and intend to post a blog in June, when hopefully the bee orchids will be in flower. For now, enjoy these photos. 😘
I hope I have identified the above correctly, please let me know if I have mixed up my common blues with my holly blues. 😅
On Sunday we drove to nearby Newton in Bowland for a four mile circular walk that started at the bridge over the river Hodder. The wind was blowing a hoolie that day and we had accidentally chosen a walk that meandered through fields of livestock, so poor Hugo spent most of the time on lead. But I think he was tired by the end of it all the same.
Just before entering the village of Newton we came across a tiny Quaker burial ground on the right. It looked overgrown but still quite pretty amongst the red campion and bluebells.
Hope you enjoyed the walk. It can be found in a pocket walking guide called Guide To Lancashire Pub Walks by Nick Burton. No stop off at the pub this time though.
On Saturday we drove ten minutes out of town for our permitted socially distanced exercise. It’s the first time I have left Clitheroe in six weeks. Wil still drives to Blackburn for work five days a week, so he wasn’t as excited to be out in the car as I was. It’s been a while! Anyway I think the change of scenery did me good. Apart from the odd dog walker, it was fairly quiet at Dean Clough Reservoir, a pretty body of water above York village near Whalley. We parked in a lay by outside the village and soon found the footpath that leads down to the reservoir.
At this time of year the golden yellow gorse flowers are all in bloom, giving off a heavenly coconut fragrance. There were bees buzzing round bugles and I saw my first swallows of the year.
In a few weeks the Yellow Flag Irises will come into flower, for now they are letting the marsh marigolds and cuckoo flowers take all the glory.
On the water we saw various birds including cormorant, Canada geese, mallards and this gorgeous Great Crested Grebe.
Instead of following the path around the reservoir we took another trail up to some rocky outcrops and admired the views for a little while. Butterflies fluttered by in a gentle spring time breeze.
We took the path back into York which is a small hamlet with a nice looking pub called the Lord Nelson. Hopefully it will open back up in the coming months. Spied some belties at a nearby farm.
Back where we had parked the car, this was our view! A rather large man standing on a small hill.
It’s a sculpture of some kind but I haven’t been able to find any information online about why it’s there. In the future will have to walk up to it for a closer look. 😁