Jo’s Monday walk : gliding high!

Hello-o-o, up there!

Hello-o-o, up there!

You’re probably thinking that lack of sunshine has gone to my head!  No, I’m not planning a sky walk this week.  What I would like to do is to take you up Sutton Bank, on the Yorkshire Moors, to the glider school.  I actually took this walk a couple of weeks ago when I was out searching for purple heather on the moors.  A road diversion had us approaching from the wrong direction, and by a very roundabout route, so that I was in despair of finding any blooming heather.  What I did find, though, was gliders!  I guess it’s an ok substitute.

The heather has already bloomed and waned, but the gliders still fly high.  You won’t need to do any climbing to see them.  I hope you’re game to come with me?

Oh, really?

Oh, really?

We parked at the Visitor Centre on Sutton Bank, properly known as Roulston Scar.  When I spotted a sign- ‘The finest view in England’- my expectations were pretty high.  At the viewing platform binoculars were clasped in several hands, but the day was heavily overcast.  I admit, I was a little disappointed.  Still, you couldn’t fault the other half’s enterprise in bringing me here. Perhaps the clouds would lift?

Promising, but not spectacular?

Promising, but not spectacular?

Not destined to be my favourite

Not destined to be my favourite view

But there was a choice on the signposts

But there was a choice on the signposts

And so, the White Horse it was to be.  Sound more promising to you?  The trouble is, The White Horse is better seen from afar.  Never mind.  I’ll do my best!  In the meantime, I was approaching the glider station.  Surely there wouldn’t be much to see from up there on a day like today?

The sign is full of promise

The sign looks full of promise

And there was a glider at the ready

And there was a glider at the ready

Control tower ready?

Control tower also ready?

The sky was starting to clear a little

The sky was even beginning to clear a little

And the beauty revealed

Revealing the beauty of the countryside

The path is level and it’s just as well because you’re constantly stopping and gazing skyward. There’s a low drone as the plane tows the glider past you and in seconds they’re airborne. Soaring out over the cliffs, it’s a heart stopping moment as the plane leads the glider ever higher and then releases into a thermal or rising air current.

The plane whizzes past, towing the glider

The plane whizzes past, towing the glider

Clinging on, in search of a thermal

Clinging on, in search of a thermal

Freedom!  And a patch of blue

Then freedom! And a patch of blue sky!

Back at ground level, the path continues on.  The White Horse of Kilburn is not far away.  I’m not sure what kind of view of it I will have, as it lies on the cliff face below me.

This is an aerial view

The sign shows an aerial view

As half expected, it's easier to get a wild flower shot

As half expected, it’s easier to get a wild flower shot

Steps lead down the cliff to a car park far below.  I look back at my husband, who shrugs and turns to walk away.  I start down the steps in search of a better view.

This is the best I can do!

This is the best I can do!

There's a bench, thanks to Fred Banks

Or this bench, thanks to Fred Banks

And a lovely patch of heather

And a lovely patch of heather

Unless you want a long descent down the steps, and then an aching clamber back up, this will have to do for now.  You could, of course, be enterprising and drive to the car park below.  I’m sorry to tell you that we didn’t.  The clouds closed in again- that’s the nature of the moors- and it was time for a hasty retreat from a squall of rain.

But at least I'd had a glimpse of 'England's finest view'

But at least I’d had a glimpse of ‘England’s finest view’

And a little moorland heather

And a little moorland heather

I hope you enjoyed our walk?  This link to Wikipedia will give you a few more details of the whereabouts and geology of the horse, and the village of Sutton-under-Whitestonecliffe, where I remember a rather nice pub.

walking logo

I won’t be home till teatime today, but I’m hoping you will still have received this walk, which I scheduled.  Early or late, I’ll definitely be there. Once again, I have some wonderful shares for you. Many thanks to all of you who take part.

My first walk this week is very fittingly titled but, more importantly, it’s full of wonderful photos. Thank you so much, Meg.  This is beautiful!

Skyspace  

The Cardinal took us to Petra in Jordan, for the sunniest of smiles  :

Street Portrait

Paula knows us Scorpios don’t mind water, or even occasionally…

Getting Wet 

If you haven’t seen any of Amy’s photography lately, you’re missing a treat.  Goodbye Summer!  :

It’s last Beauty

Drake was back on Samsoe this week, with some Norwegian love  :

Vikings, potatoes and Norwegian love

Hands up those of you who’ve been to Odessa?  No- I thought not!  Jouena has a lovely share  :

Mosaic in Odessa

You can share a walk with me any day of the week.  The details are all in my logo.  Have a great week and happy walking!

98 comments

  1. Blue skies, beauty as far as the eye can see … who needs more than that Jo? What a great walk this was and great shots hon! Thanks for taking us on this peaceful walk. 😀 ♥ Hugs ♥

    Like

  2. A wow landscape and skyline that makes one feel gliding on air. Finest view indeed. The purple flowers dared an exciting ambiance to an already amazing view. Thanks for making us feel like we are on top of the world!

    Like

  3. In a roundabout fashion of blog-hopping, I found your blog and love your idea of Monday Walks. I hope I may join in on the fun with you all. My post is here.

    and I have seen this horse, though not from a glider which would be spectacular. It was also an overcast day while we were hiking, so I can’t say it was the “finest view in England”, either!

    Like

  4. Oh to be in England! Finest view or not, you still captured some beautiful vistas and I especially love the atmospheric gloominess from the brooding clouds above. I’ve always been fascinated by the white horses, we have one in Wiltshire not too far away. Another lovely walk of a beautiful part of this glorious land of ours, thanks Jo 🙂

    Like

  5. Another wonderful walk that takes me back to my Yorkshire roots Jo 🙂 We used to drive up and down Sutton Bank en route to the coast – I remember it was very scary as a little child 1 in 3 gradient (in the old scale). I used to worry the car would roll back down the hill. We went there a few years back with our girls and it didn’t seem so bad! The views at the top were wonderful and we were fortunate to be there on a lovely sunny July day 🙂

    Like

    1. Hi Rosemay! It never seems too bad to me either, but of course I’m not the driver 🙂 Compared to some of the roads through the Scottish highlands, it’s easy. Thanks for joining me again.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. The White Horse! I would love to see this. Better seen from a glider, perhaps? I wonder how many places say that they have “England’s finest view”? Shame you don’t find the Heather, but come up to Scotland next time!

    Like

    1. It’s definitely better from a distance, Colin, and I think a glider would be perfect. Is your heather still in bloom? It’s a funny old Autumn! The trees don’t know what to do with themselves 🙂

      Like

  7. Oh I don’t know – think that was still very lovely! Reminded me of a holiday Big Man and I had in Northern Spain where it rained most of the time. We too a very hairy scary drive up a mountain to some lakes and it was so foggy we could barely see the sign to the car park 😉

    Like

  8. Pleased you managed to make it before the storm Jo. The lavender looks lovely I can smell it from here… No walk this week we’re busy packing and cleaning ready for going home. Will be walking on my own patch this weekend… 🙂

    Like

  9. Really stunning views, Jo. It must be wonderful to see all this from a glider, but I’m not sure that I’d be that daring. Those clouds do look rather threatening, and I wouldn’t want to be up in the air during a rainstorm.

    Like

    1. I love flying once I’m up in the air, Ad, but I’m not fond of bumping through clouds. Not sure whether gliding through them would be a better experience (but it would definitely be an experience 🙂 )

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Gliders behind heather – a great combination. I enjoyed the view and the sky – and your hesitation about the stairs. I concur!

    (Reminds me of a gliding experience I didn’t have once upon a time, because I got sunstroke instead! One of the big regrets of my life.)

    Like

      1. Sat beside the pilot in a six seater when I lived in Broken Hill – rest of the passengers cowered up the back while I rode amongst the clouds and relished sunrise and sunset. What a way to head off for a day of professional training. It was cheaper than paying for overnight motels.

        Like

  11. The views over the Yorkshire Dales are stunning – when it is clear – last time I was up there it was just after a snowfall so the fields were patchworks of white. We did get a photo of the horse from a road below – it is a very odd shape! I imagine the view from a glider must be the best. A lovely walk in my home county 🙂

    Like

    1. Glad to oblige, Jude. 🙂 I’ve done a few walks in your home county lately, including Studley Royal last week and a canal walk in Leeds today. Staying put for a few weeks and hoping to kick a few Autumn leaves about. 🙂

      Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.