Thursday, March 5, 2009

Grassington, the Dales Way and Scar House Reservoir

Lucky me, lucky me! My husband of one-and-a-half months swept me away for a romantic Sunday in the Yorkshire Dales. Smug-married I'll not be, so enough of this...

We stopped once along the scenic roads through the Dales, to check out these sheep and bulls with extra-long, shaggy coats.

I wonder what breed these cows are, with their distinctive markings?

Plenty of food, anyway.

Eric had chosen Grassington as our place to stay, it's in the south Dales, also known as Swaledale, between Kettlewell and Ilkley on the Dales Way.

What's the Dales Way? Here it is. It's a walking footpath route, of 84 miles, through the Dales. It is relatively flat, beautifully scenic, off-road, and with plenty of Yorkshire villages, pubs and inns to stop at overnight along the way it's a great introduction to long-distance walking, they say.

The pub we stayed in was the Forresters Arms and was a fine example of an old English Inn.

As time was short, and it was a beautiful sunny day, we decided to take a quick drive to cross the Pateley Bridge,

passing this amazing waterfall (on the walking route, see the path?) on the way, to do a loop from Nidderdale to Middlesmoor, not strictly on the Dales Way route, but an 'area of stunning natural beauty' according to the guidebook.

We began walking along the road, a relatively steep incline, but beautiful.

Snowdrops by the side of the road.

Middlesmoor really is an unspoilt village with a pebbled road leading to a church set on the edge of the hill, and a great view.

An example of a much older way of life.

Rare breeds seem to be the thing here. This black turkey was massive, the photo doesn't do it justice. It's body was like a barrel. Anyone name the breed?

I fell in love with this chapel conversion too. Ooh, as luck would have it, it's up for rent!

Keep dreaming, dancer-girl...

We walked back along a public footpath.

Check out this very old, worn piece of engineering: I can pass,

A sheep could not. Simple.

Other animals could pose more of a problem.
Back in the car and on to our final stop, the Scar House Reservoir. PLEASE check the link for all information not found here, I definitely don't get how this reservoir thing works!
Here's what I DO know: it provides the water for Bradford with a capacity of 2,200 million gallons, and was completed in 1936 with no small ammount of effort and hardship.
An entire village was also built to house workers, complete with flushing toilets (nearby village Pateley Bridge residents did not have this, it was meant to encourage builders while reinforcing the fact that they were easily replaceable, that this luxury was only available to hard workers) school, cinema and chip-shop.
Once the reservoir was completed, the village was dismantled and sold in lots.
The surface area of water is 70 hectares or 172 acres.
The length of the dam is 600 metres, its' height is 71 metres, and is comprised of over 1 million tonnes of masonry.
It's an impressive thing, this reservoir.


Shammickite said...

You married him?
Many Congratulations to both of you!!!!
I have been checking your blog from time to time and all I could find was the post about the Paris Catacombs, and I knew you were off on a theatre tour so I thought you had given up blogging! I see now that I was wrong.
I shall have to backtrack and see what you have been up to.
Great news.

Shammickite said...

great new header picture!