Out & About …

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

Category: Scugdale

  • Distress in Scugdale — the consequences of ladder traps

    Distress in Scugdale — the consequences of ladder traps

    As I was wandering around the head of Scugdale, something caught my attention: a ladder trap filled with birds. Two crows were stuck inside, looking distressed, and my heart sank. Although they had water, shelter, and plenty of food (dead rabbits), they were trapped and unable to escape. Upon closer inspection, I realised that the […]

  • “Demolished Oil Rig”

    “Demolished Oil Rig”

    The North York Moors Historic Environment Record describes these concrete foundations at Arnsgill Head as a “Demolished Oil Rig”. I think it is more likely to be the remains of a 1944 test borehole — no doubt financed by the anticipation of the eventual commercial exploitation of any resources found. The geological survey is hard […]

  • The Scugdale ‘Loop’

    The Scugdale ‘Loop’

    I was interested to read of a Neolithic “ritualised route” around Scugdale that was published in the journal of the Teesside Archaeological Society The authors conjecture that the route starts at Sheep Wash near the Cod Beck reservoir, climbs the Red Way estate track on to Near Moor, and follows the skyline of Scugdale eastwards […]

  • Weir, Scugdale Beck

    Weir, Scugdale Beck

    Just below the familiar crossing of Scugdale Beck on the Cleveland Way are these remains of a weir. The crossing is known as Bittling Mill Wath — ‘wath’ meaning a ford — but the weir is more likely to be associated with a fulling mill that was sited about 200m downstream powered by a race […]

  • Ailesbury Ironstone Mine

    Ailesbury Ironstone Mine

    Another visit to an old favourite, almost 7 years ago. I read that some conservation work had been done to the mine entrance, some trees cleared and the ditch cleared out. It looks as though some of the stones on the parapet have fallen. Ailesbury Ironstone Mine operated from 1857 to 1885 and named after […]

  • Scugdale – home of the Yorkshire Giant

    Scugdale – home of the Yorkshire Giant

    Today is the birthday of one-time newspaper editor, politician, purveyor of celebrated hoaxes, promotor of a blend of fake and real, who is widely credited with coining the adage “There’s a sucker born every minute”. His dubious business practices crossed the border into the unscrupulous, and his name lives on in film and legend. He […]

  • Furthering the Right to Roam

    Furthering the Right to Roam

    Today is the anniversary of the Mass Trespass of 1932, when four to five hundred ramblers climbed Kinder Scout in the Peak District in defiance of the restrictions on access at the time‌. Their aim was to establish a public right of access onto the moors that were privately owned for grouse shooting. The movement […]

  • At the west end of Scot Crags

    At the west end of Scot Crags

    Well, it’s Scot Crags according to the first mappers of the Ordnance Survey. Probably better known as Barker’s Crags nowadays. I am looking down on the spur they mapped as Rakes Intake where Snotterdale merges with Scugdale. Scugdale is both an unusual valley and one of contrasts. It is one of the few east-west lying […]

  • The Ash

    The Ash

    Near Huthwaite Green in Scugdale a fine specimen of the Common or European Ash, Fraxinus excelsior, one of Britain’s most majestic trees. In Norse mythology, the tree is Yggdrasil, a great ash at the centre of the cosmos where its branches and roots connect different places and time, allowing passage from the underworld to heaven. […]

  • Rank Crag

    Rank Crag

    Exploring the head of Scugdale. A distinct line of crags and broken ground at around the 310m contour, the same height as the nick on Stoney Ridge above Holy Well Gill on the southern edge of Scugdale. A coincidence? Maybe not. Between 26,000 and 10,000 years ago during the last ice age, a great glacier […]