Out & About …

… on the North York Moors, or wherever I happen to be.

Category: Kempswithen

  • Commondale from Kempswithin

    Commondale from Kempswithin

    Kempswithin is a large expanse of heather moorland bound on the north by the Esk Valley railway and containing no Rights of Way; this latter fact reinforced by the abundance of signs that have been placed by the Kildale Estates advising “No Dogs | No Bikes | This is not a footpath or bridleway“. Whilst…

  • More moor burning

    More moor burning

    Dear Tony Juniper CBE, Congratulations on your appointment as Chair of Natural England. I very much admire and respect your work as one of the country’s leading environmental campaigner and writer. I must admit however I am a bit cynical of Michael Gove’s motives. I appreciate your to-do list will be very long but I…

  • Haggaback Farm

    Haggaback Farm

    This must be one of the highest farms on the moors. Haggaback Farm stands almost 800 feet above sea level on Commondale Moor. A bleak and exposed spot. Most farms are usually sited in the middle of their network of fields, to minimise distances travelled. Haggaback is strangely at the edge of the high moorland,…

  • Kempswithen

    Kempswithen

    With low cloud shrouding the North York Moors I had to dig into my bank of “bad weather” ideas. Earlier this year I recalled seeing a large new sandstone “PRIVATE NO ACCESS” sign which I thought a bit over the top. So I headed for Kempswithen, the site of a 18th-century agricultural experiment but now…

  • Heather Burning

    Heather Burning

    In all directions plumes of smoke can be seen on the moors on a good day at this time of the year. The gamekeepers are burning the heather. Grouse feed on¬†heather. Young¬†shoots provide the best¬†nutritional value¬†but grouse require taller¬†heather for nesting and cover. To provide a managed supply of young heather patches of heather are…