Friday, March 26, 2010

Voluntary Work Over The Past Couple Of Weeks

Over the past couple of weeks we have been heavily involved with volunteering both with Wild Ennerdale at Bleach Green & The National Park for bridge surveying. Our work at Bleach Green was continued car park clearance, hedge laying & Juniper & Birch planting on Crag Fell. Not a bad view from the "office" window planting trees Rather steep workplace though Removing Juniper from their plant pots with the aid of a stick (which had the second purpose of something for Crag to chase after!) Then us & Bernie hedge laying at the entrance to the car park We have also managed to complete some bridge surveys. On a misty day we headed over to Gosforth where we surveyed this bridge on Kid Beck Just starting to rot at one end, but not dangerous & the paths around didn't look like it was heavily used.
Andy checking how bad the rot was with a penknife
Crag prefers to play in Kid Beck
Loads of frogspawn in the marshy fields
Crag is rather wary of it though
The weather is starting to improve as we survey this bridge on a tributary of the River Irt in Santon
Is this really a bridge?
Loads of daffodils waiting to bloom in the wood
And our final bridge of the day
This week we headed to Eskdale to survey the bridges in Stanley Ghyll. The first three need surveying every six months (as opposed to a year or two years) as they are a popular route upto Stanley Force Waterfall.
The first bridge looks fine
We were not sure if there had been some erosion to the abutment, but as we are back in six months we can compare this picture to then Stanley Ghyll travels through a deep wooded gorge
To the next bridge
And climbs to the third just before the waterfall lookout
The third bridge has a strange feature of a stile in the middle
Stanley Ghyll Force is an impressive 60ft drop
We then backtracked over the third bridge to a route to the overlook of the falls. The fourth bridge will need some repairs soon.
Not a great overlook, well from as close to the edge that is that we were willing to go to!
We were surprised after being enclosed in the green gorge to find above the falls was open moorland
This boardwalk is also a bridge, but rather poached where Andy is standing & through the grass you could see no one was using this & a new path had been formed to avoid it
This bridge leads over Stanley Ghyll above the falls
The water peaceful here unaware of the drop to come
These bridges come in all shapes & sizes, was there ever a stream running under here? If there was it could never have been that deep.
A good walk & an impressive waterfall, we will be back again to check on the first three in September.

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Weekend In Edinburgh

Last weekend we had a trip upto Edinburgh with Lesley, Bernie, Joyce & Ian. We travelled up by train from Whitehaven (changing at Carlisle). Here we all are on the Friday afternoon having managed to find a pub in the big City!
Then walking back to the hotel on Friday evening
Saturday was again glorious weather so we set off to do some sightseeing, this is the National Gallery of Scotland.
Andy wearing his tartan trews
The Scott monument
We got as high as the first viewing point in the monument, looking across to the Castle
The Balmoral Hotel
The Castle & National Gallery
Then we went for a walk in Princes Street Gardens
The Castle
St Giles Cathedral on the Royal Mile
Karen at the Castle sporting her early birthday present of an England Rugby shirt
Arthurs Seat from the castle
We returned to the Royal Mile where a protest was passing through, lead (to the right) by Scotlands First Minister Alex Salmond
Looking down on Princes Street
We then met up with Jessica & Dan before heading to watch Scotland v England in the Six Nations
Just a few minutes to kick off
Then the National Anthem (somehow managed to take this out of focus) video Then some Scottish song video And we are off
Jonny Wilkinson preparing to take one of many penalties
And after the most uninteresting game of Rugby we have ever seen, the clock finally reached 80mins & we could go!

We had a great weekend, the atmosphere in the ground made up for the lack of Rugby & Karen had a birthday weekend to remember, thanks to everyone who shared it with us.