Superb adventure driven weekend. After studying the weather with more than a passing interest on Friday (as I was guest writing about weather for a blog at work) I worked out that the East coast of Yorkshire was looking like one of the best chances of getting some nice weather in the North (the mid and east were looking rainy)
Pretty much as soon as I got in we set off in the van. No real plan – just head east – where the weather was going to be nice. I’ve got an OS map of the area and once we were not far off the coast I got it out and looked for a suitable place to free camp. Horcam Hole was spotted – I’ve wanted to check that out for a while so decided that would be the destination for the day.
Horcam Hole – a huge natural amphitheatre which legend tells us that it was created when a giant named Wade, a Saxon chief, grabbed a ‘handful’ of earth to throw at his wife, Bell – the soil missed and landed to form the nearby hill of Blakey Topping. Quite a breathtaking place. A nice place to camp over – even nicer as there was a lovely couple with their dogs who’d also had the same idea camped next door (safety in numbers and all that). The local constabulary came by a few times and gave us a friendly nod and wave.
After breakfast we headed off to nearby Goathland, where they film Heartbeat. Chocolate box top picture postcard little village that amongst it’s other virtues has got one of the best kids playgrounds we’ve ever come across. After letting off some steam there, we pottered about – ending at the ye old world steam railway station. This was like stepping back in time – the tourists (who’s numbers had greatly increased throughout the morning) looked very out of place.
After that, on a tip off from our camping neighbours we headed for Sandsend – just up the coast a bit from Whitby. We couldn’t of hit the weather better – by the time we got there it was a gorgeous day. We played in a lovely little pool on the beach, I sat in our portable ergo chairs (which come into their own for a trip to the beach), paddled in the breakers (as pictured up top) and generally had a lovely beached afternoon. After that, a bimble into Whitby itself, where we picked up a huge back of fish and chips and drove up to the top of the hill to eat them, looking over Whitby and the abbey. An walk round the abbey and it’s buildings (it had shut by this point, but you can see ‘it’ just as well from outside the perimeter wall.) followed by a drive home.
Still hungry for new things to do today, we visited Alborough Roman Town near Boroughbridge. Not something I’d have been happy to pay £3 for adults for but we’re English Heritage members so were able to have a look for nowt. The ‘museum’ was a small room containing a few artifacts found nearby and the main event were 2 floor mosaics. Beautiful arboretum surrounding the remains of the original wall though – some lovely trees planted in Victorian times and an incredibly pungent Jasmine. which was worth the visit alone.
Stopping off at Conyham hall on the way home for a cuppa by the river, I got to sit in our camping sofa (a phrase which, incidentally has ranked really highly as a search phrase for people arriving at DragonDrop) with my tree identification books learning about trees (a self improvement excersize I’ve set myself).
Eirene had cleverly left some lamb on slow roast, ready to eat when we got back. What a grade A weekend of adventure. I’ve chucked a bunch of photos from this weekend on my flickr site.