Out & About …

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

Category: North York Moors

  • Hadrian’s Wall

    Hadrian’s Wall

    On yet another day of our journey, Hadrian’s Wall remains a constant companion as our route leads us further eastward. This is a distant view of Crag Lough. But why did Hadrian build his Wall. It seems it wasn’t purely defensive, certainly not against an invasion. There is evidence of livestock and other resources making…

  • Great Ayton Moor: big skies and an avian nesting ground

    Great Ayton Moor: big skies and an avian nesting ground

    Great Ayton Moor offers vast open views like rural Suffolk, but closer. Moorland provides tranquility and habitat for birds like lapwing, golden plover, curlew and red grouse. In August, the heather blooms purple.

  • From Cawdma to Cranimoor

    From Cawdma to Cranimoor

    Cold Moor, often overlooked, is a vast and rugged moorland offering stunning views. Its historical name, Mount Vittoria, hints at forgotten stories. A pit and boulder field on its peak adds to the mystery. Cringle Moor, a nearby peak with a distinctive shape, is a geological marvel.

  • From a 19th Century Cottage to a Smoke-Free Future

    From a 19th Century Cottage to a Smoke-Free Future

    This peaceful cottage hides a story: 1 resident in 1911, an “Engine Driver Oil” worker. And thoughts on the proposal to ban cigarette sales to create a smoke-free generation. Laws help change cultures, but so do stories, music, and images. They shape how we live.

  • From Warren House to Toft Hill Scout Camp

    From Warren House to Toft Hill Scout Camp

    From the vantage point up Kirby Bank, one’s eyes are drawn across the Vale of Cleveland to the iconic silhouette of Roseberry Topping. Closer though, in this picturesque view, stands the Pybus Scout Camp, its white facade gleaming under the cloudy sky. Adjacent to it lies Ricey Hill, adorned with the mellow yellow flowers of…

  • <— To Highcliffe Nab <—

    It struck me as a bit peculiar that explicit directions to Highcliffe Nab were considered necessary. One might conclude that folks have frequently found themselves inadvertently ending up at the nearby farm. However, upon closer observation, the reason became apparent: the gate stands firmly padlocked. Despite its designation as a Public Footpath, no stile offers…

  • Glaisdale


    The village of Glaisdale perches high on a hill, where Glaisdale Beck meets the River Esk in a dramatic confluence. Its terrain is spectacularly steep, with descents plunging more than 500 feet within a mere half-mile stretch. At its heart lies the church, commanding a view towards Glaisdale Head. Settlement in this dale adheres to…

  • An Ancient Route into Bransdale

    An Ancient Route into Bransdale

    In days of yore, should you find yourself journeying from Stokesley to Bransdale on foot, or perchance on horseback, this very track would have been your chosen descent into the dale. It held sway as a vital route for many a year. This ancient road, depicted on a 1782 estate map under the title ‘from…

  • A Byland Abbey ghost story

    A Byland Abbey ghost story

    When Byland Abbey yielded to Henry VIII’s Suppression Commissioners in 1538, it housed 25 choir monks alongside Abbot John Ledes. A hundred years prior, a monk had settled in the scriptorium to write twelve ghost stories on a blank page appended to a commonplace manuscript of rhetorical and theological works. These tales, in Latin, predominantly…

  • Blackthorn’s Starry Flowers Precede the Bluebell Spectacle

    Blackthorn’s Starry Flowers Precede the Bluebell Spectacle

    The bluebell meadows in Newton Wood are on the verge of bursting forth in a hue of cerulean blue. However, it is not their time quite yet. The initial shoots can be seen, but presently it is the blackthorn that commands the spotlight of spring. Masses of blossom, soft and disordered, the twisted thorny shrubs…