3 February 2012


Alportdale - off The Snake Pass. Above, the hamlet of Alport - a cluster of stone farm buildings that predate the pine forest behind this isolated settlement. Below - The Tower - the central rock formation at nearby Alport Castles.
I walked above the Tower on barren snow-dusted ridges that overlook the winding Alport River valley. After a mile, and very carefully, I descended to the icy stream below, thinking I would make my way back to Alport along its rocky banks. However, in three places, progress was blocked by rock walls that were curtained with thick icicle sheets. Should I climb back up the treacherous slope to the ridge above or wade across this Arctic stream? I waded, three times, up to my knees, then squelched back to civilisation praying that the god of  frostbitten toes would spare me.

Another invigorating Pennine adventure in lovely, sharp winter sunshine... Oh a rambling we will go/In the February snow/ And its nice to walk alone/ Without a mobile phone!


  1. Ah the joys of snake pass.........beautiful views... shitty road

  2. Nice way with words, YP. ;)

  3. Once again, great photos Mr Pudding. Not sure I would have gone wading though .. not at this time of year!

  4. EARL GRAY On The Snake, I once got stuck behind a male nurse. He was driving a people carrier. It was red.
    JENNY Thank you my Welsh rarebit!
    DAWNIE Nice to find you re-connecting. You know - it wasn't too bad wading through that ice cold water. At least the air temperature was only around zero and once I got walking again I didn't notice any ill-effects.

  5. Ny mister used to drive that route sometimes and more or less said what Mr Gray says.....but those views are indeed beautiful. You were very foolhardy YP to be climbing and wading and sploshing about in cold water at your age and with no mobile phone...imagine if you had slipped or broken something! I suspect that once you were home you had a quick rub down with a sports argus and a cup of bovril to warm you up.....

  6. Lovely countryside and spectacular views YP.You certainly do go to some remote places on your own. Could have dire consequences if anything went wrong but I doubt a mobile would do you any good up there. From my experience once you leave the towns and get out into the country there is very poor mobile coverage over there. It is like that here but our large distances are the cause. I don't know what is the reason in a small place like the UK.
    Take care. We don't want you making the news for the wrong reasons !

  7. LIBBY and HELEN Thank you for your concern. I enjoy the risk element but tend to be pretty careful after falling and cracking a couple of ribs two years ago. Oh Helen - your comment about the contrasting sizes of Australia and England reminds me of this joke:-
    A Yorkshireman and an Aussie meet in a bar. Boasting, the Aussie says "We've got trains in Oz that take five days to cross the country." The Yorkshireman is unimpressed "Aye we've got some bloody slow trains in Yorkshire too!"

  8. It's The Year of Living Dangerously all over again.

  9. I misread your title and after the first read-through was quite puzzled and disappointed to find nothing about an airport in your post.

    I need a new pair of eyeglasses. All monetary contributions welcomed.

  10. MR PLAGUE It's not just new glasses you need old friend but a wheelchair and a room in a retirement home. Don't worry - family members will often visit at weekends. One of those children's feeding cups might be useful to limit spillage.

  11. Glad to see you're still mobile-less :) Me too!
    However, speaking of the moors ....
    Once upon a time, my dad dropped us off and we set off walking from near Bolsterstone, over the moors to Derwent reservoir, with the intention of having a picnic and warm cup of tea there before walking back over a slightly different route, and coming out at The Strines pub, to be picked up at the pre-arranged time of 4pm.

    All went well till yours truly decided he could do the return route intuitively, and left the map in the rucksack. Suffice it to say we came out at the wrong pub, The Ladybower Inn, at 4pm. Pub closed, and no mobile phones at hand - the fun of a military-march-speed road walk round to The Strines PH, only to find said dad had been and gone, as he also had to pick up our mother from work at 5.30.
    The next barrel of fun was to find the pub closed so we couldn't even use their phone (or enjoy a beverage), so we just sat there assuming they might come back for us, and, as luck did, around 6.30 we were rescued. When I think of all these fun-packed escapades that the mobile-packers of today will never enjoy ..... :)

  12. What an unkind thing to say! All I need is a prepaid, round-trip airplane ticket to Blighty and a new pair of boots and I'll come over there and kick your Yorkshire hiney all over any moor of your choosing.


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