Monday 9 September 2013

Whitby last - 'Pirates'

Obviously powered by diesel engine and definitely built for the tourist trade, this pirate ship still made quite a sight chugging up the Esk...

...sweeping round in front of the lifeboat and pulling up at the pier.

Though the sailor on lookout seemed less than impressed!

Saturday 7 September 2013

Whitby 4 - Peephole

Whitby is full of quirky corners!

Tuesday 3 September 2013

Whitby 3 - The harbour

Whitby Harbour lies at the mouth of the River Esk and is responsible for shaping the town as an historic fishing and maritime port. Still a thriving fishing centre, Whitby cod is renowned throughout the country. 

It was in Whitby that James Cook began his seamanship training as apprentice to brothers John and Henry Walker, eventually becoming a trusted seafarer, joining the Royal Navy and Captaining the Endeavour (a Whitby built ship) on her voyages of exploration; circumnavigating the globe in both directions, mapping New Zealand and crossing the Antarctic Circle.

Those sea vessels of old, plying the trade routes and carrying explorers to far flung corners of the earth, have been replaced by a myriad pleasure craft. In the calm waters of the harbour, tall-masted sailing boats rub shoulders with the less elegant but business-like working boats.

And the densely packed houses glow in the late afternoon sunlight.

Thursday 29 August 2013

Whitby 2 - The abbey

Dominating the skyline of Whitby's East Cliff are the parish church of St Mary, the ruins of St Hilda's Abbey and Abbey House, now home to Whitby Youth Hostel.

 The main pedestrian route between the bustling, narrow streets of the town centre and the otherworldliness of the Gothic abbey, is via the long sweeping curve of the one hundred and ninety-nine steps.

The Abbey, once a Benedictine Monestry and home to the English poet Caedmon, is now owned and maintained by English Heritage. There is more information about the Abbey here.

The 1897 Gothic Horror novel Dracula (Bram Stoker) was inspired by the ruins of St Hilda's Abbey and this churchyard of St Mary, part of the reason for the town's choice as location for the twice yearly Goth Weekend which draws huge crowds to the area.

Wednesday 28 August 2013

Whitby 1 - Sandsend

Remnants of groynes on Sandsend beach.

And yes, that water was as chilly as it appears!

Sunday 28 July 2013

Mainly for a friend across the Big Pond

I haven't blogged for ages and, last week, this appeared on Facebook:
"Ms. Helene, I sure so miss your view!"
So, mainly for a wonderful lady from across the Big Pond...


Believe it or not, Mark has just finished his three years at University. It really doesn't seem that long since we were first transporting him up to his little room in Penrith and now, it's all over.

So, last week, I made a trip up to Cumbria to collect him and all of his 'stuff'. I stopped over, so as not to have to do two long drives and a load of packing all in one day, and we spent the first afternoon in the Langdale Valley, chillin' at the boulders.

Actually, I say 'chillin', but in reality, it was melting hot and I retreated under the shade of this well spread oak tree to enjoy the views and the sound of the sheep farmer bellowing instructions and encouragements to his dog.

The small cluster of buildings is Baysbrown Farm, where I have camped on a couple of occasions.

Looking the other way, you would have had a view of the Pikes, but that would have meant standing up... climbing down... and up... (Did I mention that it was hot?), but I liked the look of the fellside through the branches.

Oh, ok then...

...but you'll notice that I've cheated. This is my view as I approach Chapel Stile whenever I stay at the campsite I mentioned. I took it back in June, just before our extended heatwave hit.

Anyway, one of the last things I did before we left Cumbria is to buy a kayak. One of Mark's friends was selling it on so I jumped at the opportunity.

Having transported Mark's back a couple of weeks previously, I knew that it would go on the roof of the car :)

And so, of course, we had to try it out...

Just to clarify. the fluorescent green kayak in the picture is not mine; mine is no-where near this long. The photo was taken after drying off, drinking coffee and eating ice-cream; looking to where we had been and to where we will definitely return!

Monday 1 April 2013

Birchen Edge through the snow

On Friday, Mark and I decided to take advantage of the sunshine with a trip to Birchen Edge. There was rather more snow up there than at home, especially in the sheltered spots and along the field boundaries where it had been piled high by the wind.

Walking under the trees, it would be easy to believe that we were still in the depths of Winter!

The sun had run away, but did make a few brief appearances during the day. When it was out, the air temperature was surprisingly warm (surprising because of the contrast with when it was absent, rather than surprising because it was almost April for goodness sake!!!)

Water dripping through cracks in the gritstone had frozen to create these icicles.