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Wed 26th August 2015

Charming Cheviot Valley

Charming Cheviot Valley

The forecast for the day was promising and turned out to be pretty accurate. Clear blue skies and warm though rather breezy. At times the gusts of winds made conversation difficult, the wind literally taking our words away. But we persisted anyway!

Most of the ascent gained on this walk is within the first mile as we climb the hillfort Great Hetha. We had fine views towards the Newton Tors, the Collingwood Oaks and towards Ring Chesters. We noted the name of the house below Easter Tor which is called Torlee House; the house in the lee of the Tor!!

This part of the Cheviots is very serene. None more so than the view from Wideopen up towards Black Hag. A charming valley tucked away in a corner of the Cheviots. Beautiful to behold. At the Border Ridge we sheltered from the wind by sitting with our backs to England admiring the vista towards Scotland. A group of mountain bikers appeared…we admired their wheels but preferred our boots!

Walking through the forest on our way down we found Fly Agaric ( poisonous having hallucinogenic effects) and the Common Yellow Russulla (Brittlegill). It was once possible to lose your way through this woodland section but unfortunately someone has tied red and white ribbon everywhere to mark the route!!

Once back at Elsdonburn it was an easy stretch back to the car park, which for once, was full to overflowing. We are so lucky to have these hills on our doorstep! A great day out.

Roy Kennard (Hillguide)
Moira Smith  (Volunteer)

Wed 19th August 2015

Rock Art Tour of the Cheviot HIlls

Rock Art Tour of the Cheviot HIlls

We gathered on a fine Sunday morning with stunning views towards the Cheviot hills providing a backdrop for our initial briefing. This was to be a walk with a difference because, we were anticipating seeing some of the best examples of Neolithic Rock Art in Northumberland, as we progressed through the day. We headed south from Doddington and made our way to Weetwood Moor where we picked up a transfer to Chatton Hill. The rock panels were all located at places with extraordinary views. Indeed, this may have been a part of their purpose. Earlier people saying, ‘This is our place in the landscape’. We noted the different motifs on the rock panels and talked about their possible meaning. A meaning , which of course, is essentially lost to us.

We took lunch at Weetwood Bridge the walls of which are at a perfect height for walkers to sit on! We walked 7 miles with relative ease. The only four legged member of the group showing no signs of tiring. The rock shelter at the end, discreetly hidden in the hillside bracken, was spectacular. It provided a fitting finale to our day.

Some of the group were interested in my wife’s next art exhibition which will feature some interpretive prints of rock carvings. This will be at the Holy Biscuit Factory, near the Biscuit Factory, in Newcastle. November 16-22nd. I’ll be at the Preview 18.30 - 20.30 on Monday 16th. Maybe see you there.

We had a good day and thank you all for joining us.

Roy Kennard  (Hillguide)
Moira Smith (Volunteer)

Sun 9th August 2015

St Cuthbert's Way Challenge Walk - 2015

St Cuthbert's Way Challenge Walk - 2015

Well done to everybody who completed the 2015 St Cuthbert's Way Challenge Walk.

We had some great weather and the light breeze kept the walkers cool whilst enjoying the stunning route on a warm August day.

Please enjoy the YouTube film from the day.