Roseberry from Pinchinthorp

Another view of Roseberry Topping, this time from Pinchinthorp on the Great Ayton to Guisborough Road. Pinchinthorp is an ancient township, the name deriving from Pincium, or Pinchun, a Norman family who held land here in the 12th century. To describe Pinchinthorp today as a hamlet is a bit of an overstatement.


Back from two weeks in the Outer Hebrides and already planning next year’s trip but as John Denver sang “hey, it’s good to be back home again”. This is the eastern branch of Raisdale with Beak Hills farm below the narrow ridge of Cold Moor or, as it was once called, Mount Vittoria.

Raisdale map


Sheabhal, the highest hill on Barraigh.

At 1260’ the highest hill on Barraigh (Barra) in the Western Isles or Outer Hebrides where every place has several spellings of Gaelic as well as the Anglicised name. Sheabhal used to be called Heaval; even the latest Ordnance Survey map names it as Heabhal. The name itself has Norse roots: probably hav, the sea and fjall, a hill, and overlooks the scattered community of Bàgh a Chaisteil (or Castlebay), named not surprisingly after the Caistel Chiosmuil (Kisimul Castle) which dominates the bay. It’s the ancestral home of the Macneil clan but a 20th century restoration, the medieval one burnt two centuries earlier.

I feel as though I’ve cheated with today’s posting as it was taken from the ferry. The easiest photo so far.

It’s turned out nice …

… after a damp start to the morning. The wheat crop in Little Nanny and Great Nanny fields must be due for harvesting soon. And Roseberry Topping, so familiar, looks even grander after a few days away. The nearer southern face of Roseberry, ten acres in total, was donated by Lady Fry to the National Trust in 1997. The northern half had already been under the ownership of the Trust since 1984. Interestingly the summerhouse and its field are not part of the Trust property but is in private ownership and tenanted to Aireyholme Farm.

Roseberry Trig Point

The elusive trig point fairy has been and given Roseberry’s pillar a lick of paint. A fresh clean canvas for the graffiti artists. I happen to know the fairy goes by the name of Ray (no aspersion intended) and he lives in Great Ayton, the village just visible through the low cloud.


On an otherwise overcast evening shaft of sunlight falls on Sharp Edge, the notorious eastern ridge of Saddleback, the alternative name for Blencathra. Hallsfell Top is the higher left hand summit and Atkinson Pike is on the right above Sharp Edge. 

Summerhouse Crag

I was browsing the 1857 Ordnance Survey 6″ map and spotted a “Summer House” marked on Gold Hill, a 1050′ ring contour between Carlton and Live Moors. Intriguing and so the target for today. The route entailed following a non existent Public Footpath around the edge of the escarpment. The summer house however has long since gone. Just an overgrown depression, a few dressed stones and the enclosing dry stone wall, now in ruins. But it would have had grand views, over the Cleveland plain and Little Bonny Cliff and Great Bonny Cliff woods. Summerhouse Crag, directly below the site, is rarely visited and takes its name from the lost building.

Summerhouse Crag map

Bluebell Meadows, Newton Woods

My annual sally into the bluebells in Newton Wood. Maybe still a little early but my patience has run out. An iconic shot, found by just following the paths created by other photographers.

The Bluebell is the sweetest flower
That waves in summer air:
Its blossoms have the mightiest power
To soothe my spirit’s care.

Emily Bronte 1840

Cote de Robin Hood’s Bay

I can’t believe it’s a year since the Tour de Yorkshire came through my village of Great Ayton. A bit further to travel this year but a pleasant ride along the Esk Valley to Robin Hood’s Bay. A tremendous atmosphere on the Cote de Robin Hood’s Bay, a 1.5km climb at 10.3%. Four or five riders had broken away, this is le peloton nearing the summit of Brow Top. I found out later watching the highlights on the tele there was a mega crash in Scarborough. I hope no one has been seriously injured.

Tour de Yorkshire map

Odin’s Hill

Lots of climbers tempted by the early morning spring sunshine reach the summit of Roseberry. By lunch time clouds were darkening but any rain held off.

Walter White spent two hours on the summit in 1858 during his grand tour of Yorkshire. He wrote that the name Roseberry comes from ross, a heath or moor, and burg meaning a fortress. The modern thinking is that the name means the hill of the Viking god Odin.