Author Archives: McEff

About McEff

Alen McFadzean. Journalist (recently made redundant from The Northern Echo when my job and the jobs of my colleagues were transferred to Wales to be done by people on lower wages), former shipyard electrician, former quarryman and tunneller. Climbs mountains and runs long distances to make life harder. Gravitates to the left in politics just to make life harder still.

Humber. Southeasterly Four. Moderate or Good. Rain later.

SPURN Head is one of those places everyone has heard of but few can pinpoint on a map. When you’ve got your bearings it’s easy to find – but that could also be said of Kafia Kingi and Amelia Earhart. … Continue reading

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Posted in Archaeology, Camping, Environment, Explosives, Footpaths, Geology, Hiking, History, Industrial archaeology, Politics, Railways, Rivers, Ruins, Second World War, Shipping Forecast, South Gare, Teesside, Walking, Weather | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

In Between One England and Another

I’M in between mountains at the moment. And I’m in between jobs. I’m in between a lot of stuff. If I wrote a book I’d call it The Inbetweener but I’d probably get sued. Today I’m going for a walk … Continue reading

Posted in Cleveland Way, Climbing, Footpaths, Great North Road, Hiking, Jargon, Life, Mountains, Ranting, Redundancy, Ruins, Teesdale, Unemployment, Walking | Tagged , , , , , | 31 Comments

Green Hurth: Where the Big Wheel Turns

TODAY I have a mission. This is no ordinary walk into the Pennine hills. This is a voyage of discovery to a lonely place where ingenious and industrious men built wondrous machines. And ingenious men they certainly were. The Brunels, … Continue reading

Posted in Archaeology, Environment, Explosives, Geology, Hiking, History, Industrial archaeology, Mountains, Ruins, Teesdale, Teesside, Walking, Waterwheels | Tagged , , , , , | 36 Comments

The Environment is Positively Charged

WHEN you’ve sat for a hundred miles in the passenger seat of an Austin Maxi 1500 listening to Tony Blackburn on Radio 1 there aren’t many things left to keep you occupied – so you stick your instamatic camera out … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Hiking, Industrial archaeology, Life, Mountains, Ranting, Windmills | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Days Like This, No 10: Peaking on the Three Peaks

WHEN you walk 24 miles (39km) in one day the soles of your feet sting and your socks feel like Brillo pads. Your legs don’t bend easily at the knees, your body aches all over, and your skin feels tight … Continue reading

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Environment, Footpaths, Hiking, Mountains, Pennine Way, Walking, Weather | Tagged , | 20 Comments

Black Combe – On the Edge of a Circle

LIFE flows in curves that turn into circles. Even things that should be permanent are part of a cycle. Today I’m walking along the shores of the Duddon estuary with a dog and a granddaughter. I’ve been here before in … Continue reading

Posted in Childhood, Climbing, Environment, Geology, Hiking, History, Industrial archaeology, Life, Mountains, Rivers, Walking | Tagged , , , , | 23 Comments

Days Like These, No 9: Clearing the Mind on the Cluanie Ridge

THERE are mornings I wake up with a head full of heaviness and pull the flysheet back to reveal an outside world full of more heaviness. Today is one of those mornings. Fog fills Strath Croe. Trees drip drumbeats of … Continue reading

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Drove roads, Environment, Hiking, Mountains, Walking, Weather | Tagged , , , | 25 Comments