Tuesday, 19 February 2019

First curlew....

There wasn't a cloud in the sky as we drove to Grimwith just as the sun was peeping over the horizon. The wind had dropped but it was cool enough in the early morning to go back into tights.
Beginning our dawn run round Grimwith  (Click to enlarge pictures)
An absense of game birds on the road indicated people had scattered them away before us, but there was only one other car in the parking lot.
View from the dam wall
A flock of oystercatchers had returned to their haunts and stood in a long line along the dam wall but flew away when they saw me getting my camera out.
The usual greylags
There were greylags too, one of them making a strange barking sound - like a fox
Enjoying the morning sun, back o' Grimwith
"What was that?" I blurted as we ran along the dam, 90% sure I'd heard a curlew.  There was no doubting when it called again a few minutes later.  We were so, so glad we'd made the effort to get up and run.
Looking into the sun - blinding my camera
We passed a lone gentleman with a pair of Weimaraners, or he passed us, probably the owner of that other car we'd seen.   He'd already circuited the reservoir.
A wee rest at a high point.
The shooters must have had a good haul this year for there were hardly any birds left for us to trip over.  And I reckon by now the shooting season is over.  Except for poachers..
So nice to run in the sun
 It would be interesting to know where they all go for I never saw a plate pass by with legs stuck in the air as we dined in the Clarendon the previous night.
Bridge over Blea Beck
It was downhill all the way to the bridge over Blea Beck where a roe deer once crossed our path and leapt over the fence like a champion high jumper, never to be seen again.
Dropping down to Gateup ghyll
I suppose we could call this a three bridges route, as one previously mentioned, for in another ½ km we're dropping down to cross the one over Gateup Ghyll.
Upon reflection
Looking across to the boathouse
A rough stony track used to run back o' Grimwith but they've gone and made it wheelchair friendly which might prove useful when I get another few years on my back.  Maybe sooner!
Bumbling along back o' Grimwith

Caught in morning light
In the meantime it was nice running with the sun on our faces to the sound of gaggling greylags and whistling teal.
Lagoon back o' Grimwith
Not so perfect when I take it..
Farther along we passed a photographer who'd found just the right light conditions for setting up his tripod to get a shot of the reservoir with a perfect foreground, the old thatched building.
Almost finished
Just another short climb
From thereon we'd a 500m climb back to the car park, crossing our third bridge, a tiny one over a dried up water course.
Passing early morning walkers...
...and a gamekeeper at the finish
And that was it.  We'd finished, feeling good after 4.33 miles and a mere 300ft of ascent.  It was back home, all smiles, for an unusual breakfast of chocolate milk, porridge, toast and coffee.
Smiles became broader and lasted all day as we brought to mind the sound of our first curlew.
That 'wet-footed god of the horizons'


  1. Always a joy to visit your blog and enjoy your fabulous photographs.

    All the best Jan

  2. Beautiful views as you run along.

    1. Thanks Karen, but I think 'jog' would be a more suitable verb though I hate the word!

  3. your run route makes me want to go on a training camp and just run of trails like that all day...

    1. Saturday's route was like running on a water bed. Sunday's was OK but maybe a bit flat for you Coach...

  4. It has to be wonderful to run in such places with that scenery! As usual great pictures. I am sad to know that the shooters must have had a good haul this year because I am against the hunt.

  5. Cheers Stefano. I never tire of running in such places and count myself lucky to have the perfect partner to share these places with.

  6. Gorgeous views as always! The curlews are calling down in the valley here too.

    1. Thanks Susie. I love curlews. Also looking forward to nightingales when we fly south for my 87th.