Tag Archives: river wharfe

Wildlife In Wharfedale.

I was fortunate enough to stay at a campsite on the Bolton Abbey Estate , over the weekend. But more about that later. πŸ™‚

The river Wharfe winds serenely through the priory grounds and theres always plenty of wildlife to see , in arguably the prettiest of the Yorkshire Dales, Wharfedale. Wil and I always seem to return to the area every year, enjoying riverside walks with Hugo and glimpses of the varied wildlife that resides here.

Here are a few photos of what birds, animals and plant life, we saw on our walks.

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The Stepping stones at Bolton Abbey.
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Curlew. The soundtrack for our camping trip was a cacophony of calling curlews, so evocative of the Dales countryside.
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Dames Violet. Saw clumps of these fragrant garden escapes all along the riverside, in hues of deep pink, lilac and white.
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Snoozy Ducklings. Mother mallard was keeping an eye on her island of offspring, snoozing in the sunshine. 😁
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Yellow Flag Iris.
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Hedgehog. We saw this beauty scurrying accross the path in front of us in Stridd Wood. He/she seemed in good shape. We quickly put Hugo on his lead and left our prickly friend to its adventures.

Also in Stridd Wood ,we noticed that some trees were covered in what looked like eerie white cobwebs. On closer inspection we saw that the silky webbing was covered in hundreds of tiny catterpillars! I looked up the phenomenon and found that the catterpillar culprits actually turn into White ermine moths. See below. How wonderful to come accross these snazzy fellows.

White ermine moth ~ image via pinterest.
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Cock Pheasant. The fields were full of fine pheasants.
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Foxglove. In fairy folklore fairies taught foxes to ring the bells of foxgloves, to warn of approaching Hunts.
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Goosander in summer plumage. I love that the male goosanders plumage turns from white and black in Winter, to grey, white and brown in Summer. 😊
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Monkey Flowers. Can you see the monkey-faces in these pretty yellow riverside flowers?

Although not really Wild, this impressive looking peacock and his turkey friend lived on the farm, nextdoor to our campsite. 😊

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Lapwing. Where there are curlews, there are often Lapwings. I love their handsome head gear. 😊

Thanks for dropping by. Will return soon with a blog about the campsite we stayed at on the Bolton Abbey Estate.

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Riverside Walk ~ Howgill to Grassington.

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Wil and Hugo, River Wharfe.

The weekend just gone, we packed our camping gear and headed for the Yorkshire Dales and a little site that has featured several times on this blog, Howgill Lodge Campsite near Appletreewick. Even though we have been there several times, we had never walked along the nearby river Wharfe to the village of Grassington before. In fact we almost always head the other way toward Bolton Abbey. A lovely route, but time for a change!

The Dales Way is an 84 -mile long footpath from Ilkley in West Yorkshire to Bowness-on-Windermere in Cumbria. Sorry folks I’m not really up for trekking that far just yet, so instead we did 13 miles ( pretty impressive I thought! ) from Howgill to Grassington and back. Here are a few pictures of things we saw on our way. πŸ™‚

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Simon’s Seat up on the Grouse moor. Sadly not a place we can take Hugo, as dogs are strictly forbidden .
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Another lovely campsite Masons at Appletreewick.
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Masons is a great place to grab a coffee and homemade flapjack. πŸ™‚
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This horse wasn’t bothered by us as we trundled by.
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Saw lots of pretty harebells on route. Witches were said to use the sap of these pale blue flowers, to turn themselves into hares.
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The Red Lion in Burnsall is the perfect place for a pint. πŸ™‚
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Here’s an informative board about what kind of people have used the Dales Way.
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Due to heavy rains in the morning , the river was pretty wild past Burnsall.
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And the stepping stones at Hebden had all but disappeared , so we used the wobbly Suspension Bridge!
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Here Goes!
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A couple of miles later and we spy Linton Church.
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Anyone fancy a bit of white water rafting? Linton Falls.
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Pretty spectacular I think.
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Soon we are in the pretty village of Grassington.
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The Forester’s Arms is a good place for a chill.
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And there are some cute little gift shops.
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Walking back and we see these Greylag Geese.
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A typical Yorkshire sign!
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A Heron in a tree.
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And amazingly………a Green Woodpecker! I was gobsmacked to see one….and actually get a photo. πŸ™‚
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I love this sign for the Craven Arms at Appletreewick.
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They always have a great selection of Real ales and ciders. πŸ™‚
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We head back to the campsite in the evening sunshine.

Hope you enjoyed our mini Dales way ramble. I’m sure it actually was mini to my other half, but I’m quietly impressed with myself. Of course our pub stops probably cancelled out all the calories we burned!

Another post from the Yorkshire Dales coming up soon. x

A Dales Camping Trip. 30 Days Wild ~Days 23 to 25.Β 

Day 23 ~ Set up Camp.  Less than a week to go now, of the Wildlife Trusts 30 Days Wild challenge. It is becoming a challenge to find new things to do in the wild, but a camping trip can surely help with that.  However looking back to my wild moments of 2015 , I can see we went camping then too. And to the same place! Still, you can’t go wrong with a firm favourite, and Appletreewick in the Yorkshire Dales is somewhere we have returned to again and again.  Howgill Lodge Campsite is a 30 minutes walk along the river from the village, and is a great little site, popular with families and walkers. And it’s dog friendly too. πŸ™‚

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The chickens usually arrive whilst camp is being set up. πŸ™‚
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And bunnies play their part at keeping the grass short.

Howgill Lodge tries to do its bit for the environment and encourage wildlife. There are bird boxes around the site, wildflower areas, and solar panels for water, heating and lighting in the shower blocks.

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There is a Wildlife Board near the site entrance.

After setting up camp in the Yorkshire drizzle, we walked along the River Wharfe and ended up in one of the pubs in Appletreewick for a few drinks. Then we got comfy , the rain got worse, so we stopped for tea and more liquid refreshment! If you find yourself in the area I can definitely recommend the Craven Arms and Cruck Barn  for real ales, ciders and amazing food, adorned with wildflowers. πŸ™‚

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Pan-fried Cod with Mussels. Spot the cornflower.

And the walk along the river is always beautiful, even in the rain. Some things reassuringly never change. Lots of glorious Common spotted orchids in bloom and a young Wild Swimmer, forever immortalised by a poignant plaque, as the Wharfe winds it’s way  through the woodland.

Day 24 ~ Wildlife along the River Wharfe.  As is tradition when we visit these parts, we decided to walk to Bolton Abbey and back.  With a lunch break, and me forever stopping to take pictures ( much to the annoyance of my other half, tee hee) , we were probably out walking for about 6 hours. Anyone else would be much quicker!  Here are a few million photos from the day.

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Giant Bellflower.
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You don’t need a wrist watch on this walk.
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Common Sandpiper.
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Not sure about this striking blue flower, maybe a garden escape.
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A lesser spotted Hugo.
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Nuthatch.
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Bolton Abbey.
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Grey Heron.  
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Goosander.
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Great Tits.
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Betony.
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Willow Warbler.
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Hugo has a Wild moment !
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Skippers on Scabious.

Day 25 ~ More from the Riverside.  Before heading home we took Hugo a walk from nearby Burnsall village to Hebden.  There is a choice of wibbly wobbly suspension bridge or stepping stones to cross the river.  Which would you choose?

And look out for these beautiful yellow flowers that adorn the river bank. I have seen them on previous visits, but only just managed to Id them.

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Mimulus aka Monkey Flower.

How is 30 Days Wild going for you? Thanks for joining me in the Dales. πŸ™‚

Wharfedale Wildlife.

A few days away camping in theΒ Yorkshire DalesΒ is always an excuse to record the local wildlife pictorially. Here are a few snapshots of some of the local plants and birdlife I spied along the banks of the river Wharfe between Burnsall and Bolton Abbey. Along with a few additions. πŸ™‚

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Female Pheasant.
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Bluebells.
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Larry the Lamb. πŸ˜‰
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Goosander.
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Grey Wagtail.
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Water Aven.
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Bunny’s. There were loads of these little guys.
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Hello There !
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Robin.
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Yellow Poppies.
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Greylag Geese Family. πŸ™‚
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A lovely plaque to commemorate a swimmer, who died so young. It can be found along the river between Appletreewick and Howgill.
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Amongst the Ramsons aka Wild Garlic.
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Male Pheasant.
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Common Sandpiper.
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A fragrant garden escape called Dame’s Violet, I think.
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Lapwing. πŸ™‚
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Another lamb amongst the Bluebells.
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Mandarin Duck.

There was of course wildlife that I didn’t manage to photograph. Stridd Wood at Bolton Abbey is home to Black Caps and Pied Flycatchers. We saw Dippers and even spied the turquoise gleam of a Kingfisher. Every morning we were woke Β by a rousing Dawn Chorus that included the calls of curlews and a cuckoo. πŸ™‚ There is nothing so beautiful than the English Countryside. Even if a few nights under canvas is a lot noisier than you would imagine! πŸ™‚

Thirty days Wild ~ Days 11-15. Yorkshire Dales Wildlife.

Hi there progress is continuing on the #30dayswild challenge. Half way through now! Some days are proving more difficult than others but I had the perfect excuse to connect with nature this weekend gone as we went camping in the Yorkshire Dales. The Campsite was located right next to the River Wharfe which is a haven for all sorts of wildlife especially birds and wild flowers. This might become a rather picture heavy post!

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Day Eleven ~ Bees on Lavender. This year my lavender plant seems to have recovered all its purple glory ( it didn’t look to good last summer) and the bees are loving it. This morning I enjoyed a quick brew in the back yard accompanied by the buzzing of happy bees. πŸ™‚

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Day Twelve ~ Do you like Butter? . This was taken on a walk from the campsite to the nearby village of Burnsall. We pitched the tent and enjoyed a stroll along the river. Buttercups seemed to adorn many a meadow so I had to check whether I still liked butter. The golden reflection on my chin proves I do. Obviously. πŸ™‚

Day Thirteen ~ Wharfe Wildlife. Today our walk to the Bolton Abbey estate passed through meadows and woods as well as a long the banks of the river Wharfe. I saw and heard so many different birds and unfortunately I couldn’t photograph them all. Black Caps in Strid Wood were one of the highlights but I didn’t manage to capture any. 😦 Kingfishers too were very camera shy, streaking by in a gleam of turquoise. We heard a cuckoo ( the first time I have listened to one in years) and also the call of lapwings and curlews. But here is what I did photograph. I may need some identification help with a few if any of you nature buffs can help? πŸ™‚

Cute ducklings. :)
Cute ducklings. πŸ™‚
Bugles and Buttercups.
Bugles and Buttercups.
Female Goosander.
Female Goosander.
Wild garlic.
Wild garlic.
A bedraggled looking Dipper...I think.
A bedraggled looking Dipper…I think.
Water Avens.
Water Avens.
Rabbit.
Rabbit.
Anyone have any ideas?
Anyone have any ideas?
Ox Eye Daisies.
Ox Eye Daisies.
A type of Cranesbill maybe?
A type of Cranesbill maybe?
Greylag Geese.
Greylag Geese.
Saw two of these Mandarin ducks.
Saw two of these Mandarin ducks.
A female pheasant....I think.
A female pheasant….I think.
Pretty yellow flower on the riverside. Any ideas?
Pretty yellow flower on the riverside. Any ideas?
Pied Wagtail.
Pied Wagtail.
Mistle Thrush.
Mistle Thrush.
Scented stocks I think.Loads of bunches of these beautiful garden escapes along the river.
Scented stocks I think.Loads of bunches of these beautiful garden escapes along the river.
Oystercatcher.
Oystercatcher.
Mallard in a tree?
Mallard in a tree?

A few of these birds and flowers I could not identify even with the help of my Collins Gem guide books so any help would be appreciated.

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Day Fourteen ~ Hug a tree. A-hem so here I am hugging a tree. I’m not sure if it was the most affectionate big old hug but I guess It made me feel giddily cheerful. πŸ˜›

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Day Fifteen ~Smell the Roses.. The Wild roses in the hedgerows smell gorgeous. I made sure I inhaled their sweet scent on my walk on day 15. What is your favourite wild flower scent?