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Monday, 6 December 2010

Upper Weardale, Very Upper Weardale

near killhope
The snow is still lying deep and crisp and so on all around Crook and the A66 is still closed and, whilst Co Durham seems to have managed to open minor roads, neighbouring County Councils have not, so, until the snow consolidates a bit, which needs a thaw, which in turn might well remove it altogether, walking about in it is a bit of a bugger at the moment.
And so, having watched superdawg chase his tail all around the living room I considered that a proper walk was in order, and what better than to go and gawp at the big snowdrifts up the top of Weardale where the main road to Alston is supposed to be closed by enormous waves of white stuff?
A frozen brake fluid sensor in the knipemobile said that I had no brake fluid, but, as the brakes seemed to be working, I pressed on up the Dale and arrived without much excitement at Cowshill.
upper weardale
There was a bit of traffic coming over Killhope, so I was too late for the closed road, but nevertheless we traipsed off up the road towards Cumbria. The road had been ploughed and salted and the drifts were disappointingly small.
who lives here?
But there was virtually, no traffic, so it was quite enjoyable. I considered going off-piste a bit and wandering along the path by the river. Bruno plunged into the deep snow by the roadside and came out limping within a couple of minutes. A bit more work on the salted road sorted out the limping, but he has a short memory and lives for the moment. So the moment his paws stopped hurting, he was back into the soft powder, and limping again. At one point he was on three legs. Going into the deep powder could well disable him altogether, and quite quickly too. So we didn’t. There’s a certain type and temperature of snow which gets into the “palm” of the paws and turns into a ball of ice, or in this case, just burns his paws.
weardale footpath
We returned the way we came, after covering just a couple of miles. We might try something a bit more local till some consolidation takes place, or , at least, a change in conditions.
Quite pretty, though….. and for anybody interested, the road is perfectly good just now.


Martin Rye said...

Nice snow cover. Being a hard up north type Mike it should be T-shirt weather to you. Too cold for southern softies like me. But still nice to look at. Have fun in the snow.

Laura said...

You'll definitely have to get Bruno some 'ickle booties - to go with the wings....(and antlers)...

Mike Knipe said...

The snow got topped up a bit last night, Martin. It'll soon be in condition for fun, but I do need snowshoes. Anybody out there got some for reviewing? No?
Booties, Laura? I think he'd chew them off... He didn;t notice the wings, but the antlers were quickly shaken off. He's an alpha male dawg, after all. Just a bit dozy.....

The Odyssee said...

Looks a stunning day. Nice pics.
Sounds great doesn’t it.
Yes, thats right it’s snow shoes i want! I do live in Yorkshire tha’nose.
Make the most of it Mike.

Mike Knipe said...

Actually, Alan, at minus 1.5C, it felt reasonably warm in the sunshine. Snowshoes and dog boots, though. Get your gear review done here...... You can have the stuff back in April....