Thursday, 28 August 2014

Ready For The Off

I can never decide if I have a favourite season, but what I really love about our climate is the changing of the seasons. It's definitely changing at the moment. Just after this was taken, I counted over 60 swallows and Martins on the wires. I really hope the wires never get put underground round here.
You'd never believe that as I type this two hours later it's wall to wall sunshine!!

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

A Mosedale Meander and Fulfilling an Ambition

The best forecast for the week falls on a day when we have commitments in the morning. So we decide to make the most of it anyway and head out after lunch for a shorter walk close to home. Mosedale is probably our favourite local spot for walks of this sort so that's where we start from
We thought we'd do a bit of exploring today, so we headed up Poddy Gill. No path but easy enough to find a way up - or up, down, up , down and up again in Breeze's case

Looking back down, the infant River Caldew winds its way through the valley with Skiddaw right at the back. If you know where to look, you can see Skiddaw house on here too

After the hard work is done climbing up, it is a nice stroll over Drygill Head to Harestones where we meet the Cumbria Way

And head to one of our favourite lunch spots - Lingy Hut. No lunch today, just a crunchy bar to mark the visit!

From Lingy we carried on along the Cumbria Way until it turned off. Looking back you can see the summit of High Pike in the background and The Cumbria Way leading to it. Halfway along there you'll spot Lingy Hut

As the Cumbria Way turned left to go down Grainsgill we carried straight on over Coomb Height. The we headed off Piste again, following our noses until we reached the track we were aiming for down Cocklakes. The name comes from the fact that this area was a renowned lekking (lakes) ground for male grouse (cock). I have been trying for ages to get some pics of Breeze bouncing through the heather. I have never achieved the pictures that I want. Today however, my luck was in. The heather was absolutely stunning and the sun was shining. Breeze was performing and for once, she was coming towards me........................

Ever so slightly mad?

Nearly the picture I have been aiming for

Little bit too much arse and not enough eyes?

WHOO HOO  That's the picture I've been waiting for.

And this one is just to prove how gorgeous the heather is looking at the moment

One more for good measure - that's Carrock Fell at the back

Back down to the Cumbria Way. All that bouncing makes for a thirsty girl.
That's a lot of photos for what was only a 6 mile walk, but the weather was absolutely perfect and the heather really is at it's best. We didn't really cover any summits as such so I am sure many folk wouldn't dream of following our route. Their loss!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Who's Been Sleeping In My Bed?

You may remember Molly The Whippet, Breeze's friend who likes nothing more than chasing her round at great speed. Well she's come for a sleep over again, but this time things are a bit different.
Molly still enjoys exploring, sniffing out anything remotely edible (pheasant pooh tastes particularly good she thinks - but then so does Breeze!)

The two of them are still great mates and will happily share the same space to gnaw on their latest chew

Molly is no longer in her cage, so not only does she have a nap on Breeze's bed in the day, we have a strong suspicion that she shares it with her at night as well.
The difference you ask? A couple of weeks ago, over the space of one weekend, Molly lost her sight. Completely. Irreversibly. She is and always will be totally blind. The way she has coped with such a drastic change has been amazing. She is lucky to have owners who have acres of space for her to have her freedom and who are giving her every help to find her way in her new world, but she really is an amazing little girl who is taking everything in her stride. It matters not one jot to Breeze. Molly is her mate and she can share her bed any time she likes - but budge up a bit Molls, there's room for two!

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Wild Boar Fell

Far from the Madding Crowd (The Lakes in the school holidays), in between the Howgill Fells and the Yorkshire Dales National Park you will find Wild Boar Fell. A quiet area, even in the holiday season and a fell that we can see from home. Two good reasons to head that way today.
We parked at The Thrang and followed the track up towards Deep Gill farm (the track you can see over the road), before cutting across the fields to the left to pass below Hazel Gill farm, under the track of the Settle Carlisle railway and start the climb up onto the Nab. That's the pointy bit at the top of this picture.

Like a scene from the wild west, horses appear on the skyline. That's right where we are heading and we don't have any bows and arrows. Don't panic, it was only a group of girls out for a hack.

Heading for The Nab, Breeze has a cool down. It was perfect fell walking weather

Oops, having managed to extricate herself from a rather thick bit of bog, she then refused to get back in any other water for a while.

Stunning views from The Nab, the Lake District Fells in the distance

Me and My Dad. If you look really closely, you will see a track on the other side of the valley which appears to almost pass through husbands head, from one ear to the other. That's our return route (and it isn't really in his head).

The Standards on Wild Boar Fell. Legend has it that these were originally built to give the impression of soldiers so that any would be attackers thought that there was a big army on the hill

Husband gives a bit of scale to the largest of the seven (plus a new one just starting) standards

From Wild Boar we head to Swarth Fell. You can't tell from here, but the top of Swarth Fell is a mile long

From Swarth Fell, we dropped down to the road and then up the other side of the valley to join the High Way, a track that precedes the road and was at one time frequented by Lady Anne Clifford of nearby Pendragon Castle. On the way we pass this sculpture. 'Water Cut', one of the 10 Eden Benchmark sculptures. I was just about to take a lovely photo of it, with a cracking view beyond as we approached when a woman with two dogs appeared and sat down on it. I grumpily put the camera away, and instead took this crap shot looking back at it after we had passed. The same woman is walking down behind us. In her defence, she had parked next to us and returned to her car shortly after us. She was very friendly,.
A really lovely walk with hardly anyone else about. 10.5 miles and one very tired dog.

Friday, 15 August 2014

A Carrock saunter

With Breeze's feet mended, we fancied a bit of a walk on the spur of the moment, but it needs to be gentle on her pads as they still need to harden. We know the Caldbeck fells like the back of our hands these days, so they were the obvious choice. Mainly grassy and we can just follow our noses.
So we set off over the Rospow hills, one of the first places Breeze ever encountered on her Fell walking career, and headed up the slopes of Carrock Fell
High Pike seen from the slopes of Carrock

A Spaniel Smile. We headed over Miton Hill and had just decided to make our way over High Pike when the heavens opened, so we changed our minds and made our way down Red Gate lonnin instead. Just to be on the safe side, Breeze wore her boots for the stoney track (not that she spent much time on the track).

She's not keen on having them on, but once on, they don't slow her down

Carrock Beck, below Quaker Hill. Nearly back at the car and the weather is improving (not for long so we had made the right choice!)
Just about 5 miles, but more or less dry and with four paws intact. A nice little walk, even if it was shorter than normal.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Thursday, 7 August 2014


Breeze has been suffering with worn out pads again, so she's been on box rest for most of the last week, with just a small amount of exercise in the last couple of days. We are all in need of her getting some quality exercise! Salt water is what we treat her feet with, and she needs to be on a smooth surface until her pads have hardened again, so where better than the seaside? And if you're going to go, then a day like today is the one to pick
Criffel in Dumfries and Galloway seen across the Solway as we head across the sand dunes from our favourite parking spot

Breeze wastes no time. She's in the sea before you can say wet dog.

She loves the seaside

Did I say she loves the seaside? (spot the tongue)

There's that tongue again, I swear it's too long to fit in her mouth

Did I say she loves the seaside?

I think she likes it here

Do we have to go now?

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

It's A Wild Life

Just for a change, here's a bit of an update on wildlife in the garden. These first few pics are of little critters, so you might need to double click on the photo to see what's there!
Bank voles are always here. There are lots of signs of them, but we rarely see them. Back in early July we saw two in one day. This one spent a long time shuffling about on the back lawn after having a drink out of the pond

We've had a really dry time up here, and the level in the pond has been lower than ever. I gave up topping it up as we were nearly out of water in the barrels. So the first few days of August have provided much needed rain. The frogs were hopping for joy when it started.


One of our infrequent visitors at this time of year - Grey Wagtail

The Partridge Family. Mum and Dad have appeared in the last few days accompanied by one teenager and three youngsters

Mum and Dad and two youngsters here (and a Chaffinch)

One parent and one youngster. I have been unable to get all six of them in one picture yet, the are really shy at the moment.