Sunday, 3 February 2013

Spending time outdoors .. being adventurous

I am very much an outdoor person. Most Saturdays and/or Sundays, I will take myself out somewhere during the day. Often I go somewhere nearby such as one of the lovely towns of Ilkley or Skipton or a village in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. Sometimes I go a bit further afield, as was the case yesterday, although I ended up doing a fair bit more than originally planned.
Before going into the details of what I did, I would like to say that spending time in nature is very healing and very important in order to maintain some balance in life. British people have lost a sense of connection to nature a bit which is a shame. We live in a beautiful world and there is so much even on our doorstep that is ready to be discovered.

SAM_3841So yesterday, I didn't really have any big plans to start with. Sometimes, I just go where my instincts take me, although that's more of a fancy expression for saying that I just decide on somewhere random and go there. I thought to myself .. let's head towards Skipton, 15 miles away, and see what I fancy doing from there. I headed towards there and near to Skipton I decided to head a further 20 miles west to Clitheroe, an attractive town in Lancashire, one of the few nice settlements in a county which has more than its fair share of depressing industrial towns. Clitheroe is known for its small ruined castle, perched on top of a hill, from where you can see excellent views of the town. To your left is one of them.




After much indecisiveness, I decided to head slightly north into the Forest of Bowland and was fairly impressed. My next ultimate destination was the lovely village of Slaidburn but here is a picture I took along the way:
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After going for a walk in Slaidburn, I decided rather than head towards Settle which was in the direction of home, to take the road to Bentham (pronounced Benth-am not Bent-am) which headed directly north. I'd not stopped in Bentham, only gone past it on the train, so may as well see what it was like. The road here is called 'Quiet Lane' and I kind of understood why after driving on it. The scenery on parts of the road was stunning - as this photo shows:
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.. but I will not be driving on that road again in a hurry! I cannot ever remember driving real slow in order to avoid going over the edge because there were no barriers, but I did for a mile or two on this road. Thankfully when another vehicle passed the other side, there was a passing place. Maybe some divine intervention there. But that was a bit hairy.
I stopped in Bentham for a very short while, pleasant enough place but not much there and it felt like a place that had not yet entered the 21st century, shops being closed on Saturday afternoons.

As I was now near the well known village of Ingleton, I decided to stop there. Little did I know that I would be doing a 4.5 mile walk which took just over 2 hours. It was great, the Ingleton Falls walk, going past some waterfalls and great scenery. All in all a good day.

Many blessings
Andy

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