Wednesday, 23 December 2009

A-Walking: Guisborough Geographs

Today's walks were the last on this year's SRC programme for which we should have had the support of our coach. Our expedition today should have taken us from Ormesby Bank {NZ 541 159} to Snow Hall Farm, Hall Hill, Newton Wood, Hutton Moor and Guisborough.

SQ and I waited patiently at the Littleboy pick-up point for the coach - from 9.15 am until 10.00 am. However, no coach appeared; I therefore rang the coach company to find out why our transportation was 45 minutes late. I was told that WM had rung up and cancelled the coach at 8.15 am!

Thanks for letting us know chaps!

In order not to waste such a lovely snowy, sunny day, I decided to do my own version of the (now cancelled) A-Walk - as outlined above - and at the same time do some geographing (see here). I therefore drove from Thornaby to Nunthorpe School and parked my car there for the day. I set off at about 10.40 am and walked to what would have been the start of the A-walk {NZ 541 159} (see the picture below) - had it actually taken place.

Ormesby Bank
From the A171 road, I followed the track (Flatts Lane) in a north-easterly (becoming easterly) direction to reach the minor road at {NZ 552 164} near to Ten Acre Bank. Turning right, I followed the road in a southerly direction for about 300 yards to reach a footpath on my left at {NZ 552 161}. I followed this in an easterly direction across snow-laden fields to reach Mill Farm {NZ 563 160}. Now changing to a southerly bearing, I descended down the farm access track to reach the A171 dual carriageway at {NZ 563 157}. I crossed this in order to get to the public footpath that lay on the opposite side. I used this footpath to get to East Upsall Farm {NZ 562 153. From the front of the farm I navigated a route that took me to the old dismantled railway track at {NZ 558 147}.

Leaving the dismantled railway track on a southerly trek, I followed a very snowy route across the fields to the footbridge at {NZ 562 139} and then continued on to Snow Hall Farm {NZ 568 136}. After taking some photographs I took a southerly path from here and headed towards the church {NZ 569 133} at Hall Hill near Newton-under-Roseberry {NZ 570 131}. While in the area of the church I had a quick geographing session.

Passing through Newton-under-Roseberry, I made my way to Roseberry Lane at {NZ 570 129}. Turning into the lane I followed this in an easterly direction towards Roseberry Topping. Rather than skirt around it, I decided that I would do the climb up to the trig point on the top {NZ 579 126} - see the picture below. Bearing in mind the very snowy and slippery conditions, it was quite a pull up onto the summit. I would certainly not have attempted the ascent without my walking poles.

Roseberry Topping
The views from the top were absolutely tremendous. Coated with a light dressing of snow, the trees in Newton Wood, and the village of Newton-under Roseberry, looked unreal - just like something from a Harry Potter film.

My descent from Roseberry Topping was much faster than my ascent. Using my walking poles for support, I more or less skied down the eastern side in order to reach Roseberry Common {NZ 583 127}.

In order to get an extra bit of steep climbing into my route, I decided to make my way up onto Newton Moor by climbing up the snow-bound Little Roseberry Hill {NZ 586 128}. Again, as was the case in my previous climb, the snowy conditions would have made this ascent extremely difficult without my walking poles. From the gate onto Newton Moor {NZ 588 127}, I followed the Cleveland Way (CW) in an easterly direction across Newton Moor to Hutton Moor {NZ 598 128}. From here I made my way to Black Nab and Highcliff Nab. I stopped at {NZ 611 136} for 5 minutes in order to partake of a quick drink and a sandwich.

I continued my trek along the CW in an easterly direction through Guisborough Woods until I reached a track junction at {NZ 622 144}. I now took the left-hand track and departed from the CW in order to descend down to Belman Bank {NZ 622 148}. I then followed the road into the car park in Guisborough to the point where the original A-Walk would have finished {NZ 615 159}. I arrived in Guisborough at 4.00 pm - just as it was getting dark. Of course, I now had to get back to my car which was located in Nunthorpe! Fortunately, I had my head-torch in my ruck-sack so the darkness and map reading were not real issues.

I made my way along Rectory Lane to a road junction at {NZ 607 154} and turned left. I now climbed uphill in order to reach a footpath at {NZ 603 149}. Following this in a westerly direction I made my way towards Hutton Gate where I came to a minor road at {NZ 597 147}. After turning left onto the road, I followed it for about 400 yards to reach the entrance to Home Farm {NZ 597 143}. From here I made my way along the route of the Tees Link (TL) footpath in a westerly direction in order to get to the visitors' centre at Pinchinthorpe {NZ 584 152}. I stopped here for five minutes for a quick drink and some rice pudding.

From the visitors' centre I continued to follow the route of the Tees Link footpath along the course of the old dismantled railway until I reached {NZ 568 151} near Low Farm. A this point the TL turned north towards Eston Moor while I continued on my westerly trek until I reached an 'operational' railway track near {NZ 555 146}. Because it was now 'pitch dark and I did not have a pre-programmed route in my GPS, I decided to make use of the snow-bound railway track near Morton Grange {NZ 554 146} in order to get to the public right of way (PRW) at {NZ 546 147}. Of course, I knew that there were no trains running on the Middlesbrough-Whitby line on Sundays during the winter months.

Railway track
As I walked along the railway track in the dark, my head-torch picked up lots of animal foot-prints in the snow. These were probably caused by deer. When I reached {NZ 546 147}, I used the PRW to get to the A1043 road at {NZ 544 148}. Turning right, I followed this towards Swan's Corner. From here it was just a short walk back to my car at Nunthorpe School {NZ 542 155}. I arrived back at 6.20 pm.

During the course of the day I took about sixty photographs. A small collection of these can be seen using the 'Photos' button below. The full set of today's photos can be seen on the Geograph site[1] - including the ones I took while waiting for the coach that never turned up!



1 The complete set of today's photographs can be viewed on the Geograph Web Site (see here). In order to retrieve the pictures, you will need to do an 'Advanced Search' using the following values: Contributor='41502:Philip Barker', Taken between='20th December, 2009' and '20th December, 2009'. Enjoy!



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