Coed Brenin Enduro 2014

Coed Brenin Enduro 2014

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Mini ski tour in the Pennines

I made the most of today's great weather by going in search of snow. Rightly or wrongly I dismissed the Lakes because it looked quite scoured and I didn't want to trash my ski's on rocks just yet!!

Love the rime on the fence
Instead I headed North to the Pennines near Alston and started my mess around at Yad Moss, which has a ski tow and piste (I use this term loosely). Not sure if I appeared on their web cam or not.

I'd known that the ski tow wasn't running today so I had the place to myself. I skinned up, toured around on the top and made 5-6 runs down various 'interesting' slopes.

It was just what the doctor ordered and I spent the time learning the intricacies of using skins (man the glue is sticky and a pain when it sticks to your fleece!), kick turns, and how not to ski in powdery grassy terrain. It was sunny all day and I really enjoyed it. Lets hope there is more snow to come.

Sunday, 4 January 2015

Icy tracks and scarlet macaws in the Pennines !

I had a brainwave, and declared that we should head up to Kirkby Stephen for a nice easy ride in the sun on the last day of the holidays before the usual work trudge starts again.....

We biked from Kirkby Stephen over to Brownber crossing the Coast to Coast footpath on our route. It was beautiful at Smardale Bridge but pretty darn cold. The ground was on the whole frozen,  but some areas where the sun had hit were surprisingly muddy, which again made it hard going (or maybe we were out of shape!). 

Fun time

Beautiful tree (and Abi!)!
The return leg over Nettle Hill was lovely and the light stunning. I got a puncture on this stretch, which was cold to fix, but I think its my first for over a year (good going). More icy patches led to Crosby Garrett and an icy road return to Kirkby.

Magical light
Packing up at the car we were really surprised to hear strange bird calls, and then see a flock of ??parrots fly over head!!! I'd heard of parakeets in the South of England, but here in the Pennines surely not. Well it turns out that they are quite famous/infamous, and it made an interesting end to a great day. Here's an article from the Guardian about the 'birds' !

Friday, 2 January 2015

Silverdale's bounty

After being house bound due to the very grotty weather on New Years day, today felt very restorative getting out and exploring some of the Lancashire/Cumbria coast.

Morecambe Bay

Be careful Abi!!
We started our wander at Silverdale, firstly heading to Jenny Brown's point. As the tide was partly out and we gazed over Morecambe Bay it was hard to imagine that ships landed here in the late 18th century, when now all that remains is a ruined stone jetty. It takes its name (Jenny Brown) from a nanny who was drowned here whilst trying to save the children under her care from the rising tide.

Beach combing (lots of pebbles!)

Heading back we got shelter from the high winds as we ambled through some beautiful ancient native woodland, clearly shaped by the limestone geography and often exposed land forms.

Ash Christmas tree
Just above the mud flats and tidal channels we came across an Ash tree that had been decorated with Christmas baubles and tinsel, it was very beautiful and seemed quite fitting for a first wander of 2015. Happy New Year.....

Come on Simon, hurry up with the pictures...

Not another! I'm off.....