#81 – The quiet hills of the Llŷn Peninsula

Gyrn Goch (left) and Gyrn Ddu, seen from Trefor

I don’t usually do requests in this blog, mainly for the reason that I don’t get many requests!  In post #76 I wrote about the processes I go through writing walking routes for websites.  I had a bit of fun adding some archive photos, and inadvertently started a mini ‘Spot the location’ competition!  Fellow outdoor blogger ‘Mountain Coward’ asked for a bit more info on one of the pics, and how could I refuse – So, here’s a Welsh walk that Chris and I did in October 2010.

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Posted in 5. North Wales | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

#80 – Sunny day on the Langdale Pikes

The Langdale Pikes, seen from Elterwater

It’s never happened to me before.  I went into the Hiker’s Bar of the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel in Langdale on a Sunday afternoon, and it was empty!  Not a case of alien abduction though, as dozens of customers were sat in the garden area enjoying a rarity in Langdale – a hot, sunny afternoon.  The pub, known as “The ODG” to thousands of walkers and climbers, is an institution, and makes a perfect end to a good day in the hills.  Which is why we were there.

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Posted in 2. Lake District | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

#79 – The Clwydian Hills (Bryniau Clwyd) – Gateway to North Wales

The summit of Moel Famau

Those of you who have read #73 will remember that Chris and I have recently bought a house in the Clwydian Hills in North Wales, but on our recent trips over there we’ve been ‘flat-packing’  instead of ‘back-packing’  – IKEA has a lot to answer for!  When the recent spell of good weather arrived it didn’t take much to find an excuse to escape, and as we will soon be living amongst the Bryniau Clwyd it seemed a good idea to keep it local.

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Posted in 5. North Wales | Tagged , , , | 31 Comments

#78 – Witches, hitches and follies

Wainman’s Pinnacle and Earl Crag from Cowling

The Aire Gap has been an important travel route over the Pennines since Neolithic times, with the Aire and Ribble Valleys allowing a sheltered crossing of the Pennine Hills that doesn’t rise higher than 170 metres – the nearest crossing at a lower altitude is in the Midlands.  One of the most familiar landmarks with travellers heading down the Aire into West Yorkshire is the escarpment of Earl Crag, with its two follies decorating the skyline.  It’s just begging to be walked – So we did.

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Posted in 4. Northern England | Tagged , , , | 15 Comments

#77 – A Witch, a Slippery Peak and a Black Dog!

Pen Llithrig y Wrach from the south

When I first visited Wales, many years ago, I found the Welsh language to be confusing to say the least, with most of the words looking like a bad game of scrabble.   It started to make more sense when I started walking with Chris, who grew up in North Wales, and she soon started to correct my typically bad ‘English’ pronunciation of Welsh words.

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Posted in 5. North Wales | Tagged , , , , | 20 Comments

#76 – “Are you playing on the computer AGAIN?!!

The author having a good time in a ‘snowy’ Snowdonia

A few months back a friend asked me about my outdoor writing, along the lines of “But what do you DO?”  I explained it something like this – “I go for a walk, I write about it, people throw money at me”.   (Only in my dreams, that last bit!)  In reality it’s nothing like as simple as that, and the walking part takes only a fraction of the total time.

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Posted in 1. Scotland, 2. Lake District, 3. Yorkshire Dales, 4. Northern England, 5. North Wales, 6. Mid and South Wales, 7. Everywhere Else!, General Interest | Tagged , , , | 21 Comments

#75 – Access to the hills and The Mass Trespass of 1932

The plaque at Bowden Bridge Quarry, commemorating the Mass Trespass

 For those who missed it, 24th April was the 80th anniversary of the Mass Trespass on Kinder Scout in 1932.  The Trespass was part of a working class movement in the first half of the 20th Century to secure the right for the public to walk on the hills and moors of Northern England (This right has always existed in Scotland).  These areas were used by the landowners for shooting game birds, and anyone attempting to walk there would be turned back by aggressive gamekeepers.  It was a situation that could not continue without being challenged

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Posted in 4. Northern England, General Interest | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments