Viewing galleries from June, 2016
There are a few pictures that deserve a posting and thanks to Marian, Peter and Jane for so many photos during the week. HF Holidays in West Lulworth House looked after us very well and even more importantly was the generous assistance and guidance from their walk leaders. Their knowledge of the area was superb. They also included us in all their evening events, so we now know a little about Cornish cheese, heard some Cornish songs, failed miserably to display our knowledge of cocktails and took part in a nationwide quiz.
Last walking day at lovely Lulworth and we couldn't leave without seeing Durdle Door. This slab of limestone, now almost vertical, has a large hole in it (and a smaller one higher up) and surrounding rocks have been washed away by the sea. Nearby is the steep valley called Scratchy Bottom, used in the making of Far from the Madding Crowd and other films. For those doing the longer walk, Scratchy Bottom was surprisingly home to a large number of Bee Orchids and Cinnabar moths. After traversing the hiills above Lulworth, we descended and just managed to reach the Church of the Holy Trinity before the rain started. In the end we were forced to brave the elements to reach the the meeting point - the Castle Inn, where we rested before the final trip back to West Lulworth House and another pleasant evening with the HF organization. The walk was only around 5 miles but the 850ft of ascent certainly tested us all.
This day was based on Studland and the surrounding area. Keen walkers headed for Old Harry Rocks, via Agglestone Rock and Ballard Down. The Agglestone is a large lump of sandstone rock perched on top of a large hillock on the Godlingstone Nature Reserve. How it got there is anyone's guess, but the story that the devil threw it from the Isle of Wight to destroy Corfe Castle and missed, is unproven.
As we were in Thomas Hardy country, we felt obliged to do some touristy things. First to a lay-by on the A35, but things soon got better as we attempted to round up sheep in the rolling fields of Dorset. Hardy's cottage was disappointing as the National Trust don't open on Tuesdays. A pleasant walk along the River Frome then brought us to Stinsford Churchyard, complete with a long line of Hardy family memorials. Back to the lay-by, then to Maiden Castle for picnic lunch in the car park. This colossal earthworks remained un-explored by us as it was raining hard. From there to the monument to Vice-Admiral Hardy with extensive views, including a glimpse of West Fleet, behind Chesil beach. Thanks to Marian and Peter for additional photos
Paul's pleasant walk to Hooksway was fairly damp and misty. There were a surprising amount of horseflies with a great hunger for humans unfortunately. Common Spotted orchids in abundance and in different colours. Just over 6 miles in total, with about 600 ft of ascent. The Royal Oak looked after us very well. On the way home some of us were rewarded by the sight of a rook and a red kite in aerial combat, with no apparent winner or loser.