Saturday 16 July 2011

On the moor

Today we are going to walk out of the village above the field line and onto the moors. 
The landscape has been shaped by local farming, mainly the rearing of hardy Wensleydale sheep. They crop the ground to a short, lawn-like surface and wild flowers such as this clump of thyme flourish in the cracks and crevices.

The village can be seen spread out below.

It is delightfully easy walking along the 'green roads', old drovers roads, wide, walled pathways that traverse the landscape and were used to move livestock from Scotland and the rural North of England down to the early industrial areas of Yorkshire.

On the moor top there are many peat darkened streams, with small pools and falls and miniature beaches.
Vast tracks of land have been walled, the result of the Enclosure Act of over a hundred years ago. Today I expect to walk in this landscape and not meet a soul but in earlier times it was far more densely populated. A great many families came from Ireland to work on the walls and in lead mining and railroad and reservoir building, not to mention the seasonal farming tasks that have now been taken over by machinery.
Just another few weeks and the heather will be in bloom. 
This is the landscape that the word, 'home' evokes.


  1. How beautiful! I now have a visual to put with the descriptions I read in books. I am afraid in the past I have thought of the moor as being somewhat desolate. It certainly is not. It is beautiful! I would love to see the heather is bloom.

  2. I agree, Tom, but then, I am a bit biased!

    Dear Bonnie, I shall post for you in winter when it is Wuthering Heightsish! Desolate indeed, but beautifully so.

  3. Yes, we were up there yesterday and the heather is already showing pink.