Tag Archives: Burnsall

The Dales Way – Burnsall to Kettlewell

So now we’ve reached Burnsall, a very small village with no shops or amenities, dominated by the 500 year old Red Lion Hotel, where we are staying.

There is a bridge here.624CF834-4BA6-4A15-86A3-7F34CABDAB91

And a church.9A5415AE-7645-47EE-B860-A56ED59243B6

After a refreshing and much needed shower, we went down to supper in a traditional English pub. Although this is definitely not a food blog, we are trying to experience and share info about traditional English dishes while we are here. If you are already acquainted with these dishes, my apologies.

Jim ordered shepherds pie (lamb, carrots and gravy under a fluffy mashed potato crust) with cabbage on the side.

I opted for the even more traditional haddock and chips, accompanied by a serving of mushy peas. After liberally applying salt, pepper, catsup and brown sauce, we pronounced all the food delicious. Everything you’ve heard about the blandness of English cuisine is, as far as we can tell so far, true.

June 11 – We walked around the tiny village of Burnsall this morning. The buildings are uniformly rectangular and made from the same brown stone, so the residents pour their energy into their front gardens.D4397C15-D1F0-49E2-AD9A-DFEE12A99CC8.jpeg

This morning was our first opportunity to order what is called “the full English” breakfast, which consists of (clockwise) eggs any style, fried mushrooms, black pudding (a sausage that tastes sort of like liverwurst), bacon (we would call it ham), fried tomato, fried toast, sausage and baked beans.  I’ve heard this meal also called “a fry-up”.26AE085B-E7BB-4CFA-B6EF-221630A31934We now understand why defibrillators are available here on every corner!CC00F776-9B9C-4FC9-9AA2-7AE9EF9D2900June 12 – This morning we proceed nine miles to Kettlewell, which our guidebook promises will be a pretty and pleasant walk.

We started by getting our daily dose of sheep and cows.

We crossed the River Wharfe one more time, over a bouncy suspension bridge.

Here’s another tree stump filled with coins. Maybe for good luck?

We left the river, and climbed up into the hills, where there are lots of stone walls. Yes, for every wall, there was a stile to climb over.

We walked through the village of Grassington, which has a little waterfall and an interesting carving.

So, as we were walking along, all the sheep in the field we were traversing started maa-ing and baa-ing. Dozens of sheep. Maybe a hundred sheep. Jim wondered if we upset them somehow. Next they all started running toward us. Oh no! Trampled to death by sheep? What a way to go! Over the horizon we heard the drone of a tractor, and here was the farmer, coming with the morning meal. The sheep ran right past us, continuing to make an unholy racket until the tractor stopped and the first handfuls of grain were thrown. Then blessed silence. Sheep!

The Yorkshire Dales Way – Ilkley to Burnsall

June 9 – This morning we walked back to Leeds Station to catch the train to Ilkley. Jim got us a discount rail pass for off-peak riders, so all our tickets are 30% off. Once again, we were reminded of the dreaded gap!

Ilkley is a lovely little town, bustling with weekend tourists on a bright Saturday.  We checked in at the Dalesway Hotel, and took a little walk about the town.  It seems to be a canine-friendly place.

We ducked in to All Saints Church, as I knew there was a special stained glass window there, dedicated to handbell ringers, in memory of Jasper Snowden, killed in WWI, and his family. Grandfather John Snowden was the vicar here, and both his son and grandson were avid change ringers and writers of handbell music.

There were also some eighth century stone pillars:

I particularly liked the embroidered kneelers at every pew. No two alike!

Quaint country buildings that look like they could be in Germany or Austria:

And lots of flowers in bloom!

As we are officially in Yorkshire, Jim opted to have Yorkshire pudding for supper. This is nothing like pudding as we know it, but is a baked bread-like shell, filled with roast beef, potatoes, peas, carrots and gravy. The pudding refers to the shell, not the contents. We didn’t think to bring a camera to supper, so here is an image from Google to give you an idea. Jim’s was much prettier, and huge. The barman was very impressed that Jim was able to finish it.

June 10 – This morning we started our Dales Way hike. It is Sunday, and our hotel offered breakfast at 9am, but we opted for coffee and oatmeal in our room and an early start. We were on the trail at 7:30, with 14 miles ahead of us.

Here is the map provided at the starting point. Do you see Ilkley all the way to the south?

The weather was foggy and a bit chilly in the morning. Today’s route follows the River Wharfe all day. It didn’t take long for us to run into some sheep.

We crossed one farmer’s field after another, pausing at each boundary to open and close a gate or climb over a stile. A stile is a simple ladder that allows people over, but confounds the sheep. By the twelfth stile, they confounded me too – my first leg went over easily, but convincing my back leg to join it became harder each time!

Unlike the US, where property is private and “trespassers will be shot”, England and most other countries have what is called the right to roam. Don’t litter, don’t disturb the livestock, and please close the gate behind you. What a wonderful philosophy!

We walked past some cottages that had originally been a mill built in 1787. Wouldn’t you love to live in Cobweb Cottage?

In an hour, we came upon a Friends Meeting House built in 1689. Inside, there were transparent silhouettes to remind us to honor the soldiers who died in the Great War.

By mid morning we reached Bolton Abbey, with the ruins of a priory attached to a working church. A sign said people have been worshipping here for 850 years.

My mom instructed me to take pictures of castles. As Windsor and Buckingham are not on our itinerary, here is a building in the Abbey and a bridge that look sort of like castles!

Bolton Abbey is part of a large park that we walked through for the rest of the day. Lots of families enjoying the River Wharfe, either fishing or wading. Here’s a place where you can opt to cross by jumping on stepping stones or going over a bridge. Which do you think we chose?

There’s a fallen tree into which hundreds of coins have been hammered. Couldn’t tell you why.

As we left the walk to get some lunch, we were surprised to find we had been walking through the Valley of Desolation. We thought it quite cheerful.

We encountered a full complement of fauna as we tromped through the fields on what turned out to be a warm and sunny afternoon, with the River Wharfe always at our side.A wonderful first day!