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Wednesday, 3 October 2018

A Mozie Over to Mozie Law (South Top)

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It’s not a mistake to allow your pet dog to study maps y’know. LTD had been pawring (see what I did there?) over OL Whatever-It-Is – a 1:25k map of the Cheviot Hills when suddenly he pointed at a small and obscure ring of contours and barked excitedly. On investigation, there, hanging off the Souhtern slopes of Mozie Law was, indeed an intruiging ring of two contours. Due Diligence proved this to be the very obscure but rather lovely Tump named Mozie Law South Top. I expect that this isn’t really it’s name, but it’s the name given to it in www.hill-bagging.co.uk , the web-based bible for all things important and many things not really very important in the Ramblers version of trainspotting, the bagging of hills.

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So, we went. We were diverted from our trip up the A68 by a multi-day-once-in-thirty-years resurfacing of the road..er…surface at Ridsdale on to some obscure road that drifted aimlessly in the approximate direction of Stockton-on Tees, which made us late. What made us even later was my arrival at the Chew Green car park after two hours driving when I had already passed my intended car park at Buckhams Bridge some time earlier and had been held up by a herd of cattle chewing the cud in the middle of the road and/or tucking in to the contents of a road-salt bin and covering said road in slippery poo. I’m not sure if road salt is good for cows or not. I wonder if it curdles the milk?

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Anyway, eventually we set off and after a bit of a moorland wander populated by many cattle, turned up at Yearning Saddle Mountain Hut in time for lunch out of the lively and chilly breeze wafting off the Solway Firth and tight up the kilt. I mean Right Up.

We were joined by a friendly Pennine-Wayfarer who gave me the news that Colin and Joyce  are selling-up their hostelry at Byrness. It’s probably deserved, but they’ll be missed by Pennine Wayfarers and the odd (some would say peculiar) wanderers along the Scottish/English Border. They dried my boots and socks and fed me and beered me, so it’ll be a bit sad, but, hopefully somebody will carry-on the good work. There’s not much else in Byrness to be fair.

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Mr Pennine-Wayfarer marched off towards Hen Hole for the camping out of the wind and we followed him a bit – as far as Mozie Law and then down steeply to discover a steep green mound with a small cairn on the top – Mozie Law South Top. It was much too windy to hang around drinking coffee and eating baked black olives (my latest addiction) So, to the East of this lump, a couple of hundred feet below in a deep valley, there’s a flat green sward providing somewhat of a sheltered sun-trap. A group of about a dozen feral goats had also noticed the sheltering effect of the gill immediately above and these were sitting about reading the Guardian and sipping Pimms with nibbles, or just scoffing the grass. We didn’t bother them.

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A brief but brutal lunge up the hill brought us to The Street – an ancient road to Scotland - where, back in the wind, we had a breeze-assisted traverse over Swinside Knowe and Bought Knowe to descend through more cattle to the farm at Carlcroft. They have a lot of dogs at Carlcroft and we were greeted by a couple of adolescent collies, the local alpha-male collie who sniffed LTD’s bum, and a couple of levely pups, off on some adventure, but beating a hasty retreat into the farm buildings on encountering a grumpy LTD. No harm done, though. The cattle weren’t interested in us or made off in an opposite direction and the farmer waved.

A quick march up the road returned us to the knipemobile which was still where we’d left it.

Ten miles and a couple of 2200 feet of ascent and a severe hair-ruffling. Winter draws on, I think. I might have to start wearing trousers quite soon.

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Monday, 1 October 2018

Nenthead to Ashgill and Back–A Walk With Wolsingham Wayfarers

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I’d done this route once before with the Wednesday Walkers Walking on Saturdays group, but this time it got placed on the Wolsingham Wayfarers Sunday walks programme.

Me and LTD did the initial reccy on the Wednesday – a foggy and mizzly sort of back-endish day with a lively breeze, an aspect felt more keenly in a kilt, specially when crossing stiles. But as there were no witnesses, save LTD, who has seen it all before, I wasn’t too bothered with the modesty.

On Sunday, I collected Li Yang from her hill-top fortress and John from the Demesne Mill car park and orf we went to Nenthead. There, we met four other walkers and Holly the Collie – a very well-mannered pooch – behaviour which rumbustuous knipehounds would do well to emulate. (This means you, Lucky The Dog)

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I’d changed the route a bit at the start to make it simpler to navigate and a bit in the middle where I found a nice path from the fell down to the Pennine Way.

On the day it was bit colder than before and the breeze srill flirted with the Parts That Remain Hidden (specially on the stiles) and it all went reasonably well, altthough we did get wet a couple of times. I’d just overspent on a fabby-whizz new windproof jacket – a Mountain Equipment Vulcan jacket which turned out to be more waterproof than my waterproofs and snuggly cosy to boot against the withering nither of an arctic drift (the temperature at Nenthead was just 6C when we arrived) Brrr as they say in Rekyavick.

The walk goes over the moors from Nenthead to Bentygill Mines, follows the Pennine Way to Garrigill, then the South Tyne Way to Ashgill where we scrambled up behind the waterfall, and then back over the moors to Nenthead.  9 Miles altogether and quite good fun.

Pics are from the reccy and a few that I took on the day.

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Note for information: Whoever is driving the multiple views of a post about a walk at Attermire with Martin Banfield in November 2009,  the motivation behind which is obscure, I’ve made the post inaccessible – just like the neighbouring post about Cautley Crag, which, a few years ago, received thousands of hits in a few weeks and which I also made innaccessible. If the idea is to bugger up my stats, then you’ve been successful. I suspect, though that the motivation is much dafter than that. Several years went by before whoever it was realised that Cautley Crag wasn’t working and moved on to Attermire. Attermire’s not working now. Since the viewer is likely to be a Ukrainian bot, I expect that it might take a few years to move on to a neighbouring post. So, I’ve buggerred up quite a few neighbouring posts too – one of which has only had 27 views since November 2009 – so…….

More pics below – click to make them bigger:

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