Category Archives: Climbing

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

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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

What Does Adventure Mean to You?

DO you work in a factory, an office, a shop, or drive a company van? Are you a member of parliament, unemployed, a doctor, a refuse collector, a teacher or the chief executive officer of a multi-national corporation? Maybe you … Continue reading

Posted in Climbing, Environment, Hiking, Mountains, Mourne Wall, Walking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 44 Comments

Days Like This, No 8: The Five Sisters of Kintail

I HITCH a ride from Shiel Bridge along Glen Shiel. I used to do a lot of hitching but times and attitudes change. People are more wary of strangers these days. Everyone is less communicative. But what the heck. The … Continue reading

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

Cross Fell – Fiends, Rivers, Paths and Poets

A walk up Cross Fell and down the Tees and Tyne . . . Continue reading

Posted in Climbing, Environment, Footpaths, Ghosts, Hiking, History, Legends, Life, Mountains, Pennine Way, Poetry, Railway goods wagons, Railways, Religion, Rivers, Teesdale, Teesside, Tyneside, Walking | Tagged , , , , , | 24 Comments

Days Like This, No 7: On a Ridge Above Glen Shiel

SOMETIMES early mornings can be warm and skies blue. Sometimes the air is so peaceful that mountains reflect in lochs while shadows retreat to cooler places. This morning, in Strath Croe, nothing stirs except bees. Even sheep remain motionless. It’s … Continue reading

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Environment, Hiking, Mountains, Walking, Weather | Tagged , , , | 22 Comments

Days Like This, No 6: Ciste Dhubh – a Highland Jewel

RAIN drumming on a flysheet. Condensation dripping on damp clothes. Another day begins in the Highlands – a day with clouds hugging the treetops and few prospects of fine mountain scenery . . .

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Hiking, Mountains, Walking, Weather | Tagged , , , | 21 Comments

Days Like This, No 4: Before Night at Beacon Tarn

Memories of a backpacking trip from Cockermouth to Greenodd . . . Continue reading

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Environment, Hiking, Mountains, Quarrying, Slate quarries, Walking, Writing | Tagged , , , | 25 Comments

Days Like This, No 3: Sunset on Caw

ONCE in a while I stand still and look around and think: at this precise moment I am truly alive; I am as much a part of this earth as a root raising its knuckle from the turf or a … Continue reading

Posted in Climbing, Environment, Hiking, HMS Invincible, Life, Mountains, Walking | Tagged , , , | 35 Comments

Going to California . . . Via Teesdale

HISTORY has not been kind to the Pennine valley of Hudes Hope. On a sunny morning in March its lesser scars can be mistaken for natural wounds and warts on the landscape. But there is no disguising the greater disfigurements … Continue reading

Posted in Climbing, Environment, Geology, Hiking, History, Industrial archaeology, Mountains, Quarrying, Ruins, Slate quarries, Teesside, Walking | Tagged , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Days Like This, No 2: In the Tatra With Bears and Nuns

ZAKOPANE is a resort in the foothills of the Polish Tatra. Many people warned us about coming here, saying Zakopane is the unacceptable face of commercialism in an otherwise pristine mountain environment. But we like the town immensely. I suppose … Continue reading

Posted in Camping, Climbing, Environment, Hiking, Mountains, Poland, Second World War, Walking, Zakopane | Tagged , , | 29 Comments

Wild Winds and the Wain Stones

FOR many years I lived under the misguided impression that Ewan MacColl’s iconic mountain song The Manchester Rambler included a mention of the Wain Stones in the Cleveland Hills. Only recently did I discover there is another set of Wain … Continue reading

Posted in Archaeology, Bronze Age, Cleveland Way, Climbing, Cup and ring carvings, Environment, Ewan MacColl, Footpaths, Hiking, History, Legends, Mountains, Teesside, Vikings, Walking | Tagged , , , , | 35 Comments