September Hikes

Landscape and wildlife photographs taken during September in the hills and dales around the Yorkshire town of Hebden Bridge. A walkers’ paradise and wildlife haven in one of dramatic corners of Yorkshire, on the doorstep at Elmet Farmhouse holiday cottage at Pecket Well, above Hebden Bridge, near Hardcastle Crags, Haworth and the Yorkshire Dales.

Photographs copyright Lesley Jackson

Summer Saunters

July jaunts in the Yorkshire hills and dales around Hebden Bridge and the Upper Calder Valley in the South Pennines. A wildlife haven and walkers’ paradise in one of dramatic corners of Yorkshire, on the doorstep at Elmet Farmhouse.

Photos copyright Lesley Jackson and Ian Fishwick

Birds of many Feathers

Birds of many feathers flock together in the hills and dales around Hebden Bridge                                                                                                                                   

Whether you’re a serious birdwatcher or simply enjoy observing garden birds, there’s a wealth of birdlife in the hills and dales around Hebden Bridge. Because of its hilltop location, Elmet Farmhouse is the perfect place for birdwatching. Surrounded by meadows, with woods and rivers in the valley below and open moorland on the uplands above, there’s an unusually diverse array of species in close proximity.

From golden plovers, lapwings and curlews up on ‘the tops’, to kestrels, swallows and pheasants in the fields, to woodpeckers, tawny owls and treecreepers in the woods and herons, dippers and grey wagtails by the river, there’s great scope for bird-watching in the Upper Calder Valley. These photos record some of the birds we’ve encountered locally in the last few years.

Blue Tit

Barn Owl

Black-headed Gull

Blackbird

Buzzard

Canada Goose

Chaffinch

Chiffchaff

Coal Tit

Curlew

Dipper

Dunnock

Fieldfare

Gadwall Duck

Goldcrest

Golden Plover

Goldfinch

Goosander

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Great Tit

Green Woodpecker

Greenfinch

Grey Heron

Grey Wagtail

Greylag Goose

Guinea Fowl

Herring Gull

House Sparrow

Jackdaw

Jay

Kestrel

Lapwing

Linnet

Little Owl

Long-Tailed Tit

Mallard Ducks

Meadow Pipit

Mistle Thrush

Northern Wheatear

Oystercatcher

Parakeet

Peacock

Pheasant

Pied Wagtail

Raven

Red Grouse

Redpoll

Redshank

Redwing

Reed Bunting

Robin

Rook

Sandpiper

Short-Eared Owl

Siskin

Skylark

Snipe

Song Thrush

Starling

Swallow

Tawny Owl

Treecreeper

Tufted Duck

Willow Warbler

Wren

For up to date news about sightings by keen local birdwatchers, visit Calderdale Birds

© Photos copyright Lesley Jackson and Ian Fishwick

Looping the Loop

Looping the Loop: Crimsworth – Walshaw – Hardcastle Crags

 

 

Walkers are spoilt for choice in the countryside around Elmet Farmhouse, with its dramatic and varied landscape and the dense network of paths. On a fine clear day, there’s no better hike than the Crimsworth Walshaw Loop, a high level walk up on ‘the tops’ with glorious views of wooded valleys, hilltop hay meadows and rolling heather moors. Spring, summer, autumn or winter, if the sun is shining, this is the place to be.

These photos record an extended version of the Crimsworth Walshaw Loop in mid August when the heather moorland is in full bloom and turns a rich deep purple. The walk begins at Grain Water Bridge at the far end of Crimsworth Dean, then veers off up the hill over to Walshaw. After dropping down to Walshaw Lodge, it climbs up over Walshaw Moor to the string of reservoirs at Walshaw Dean, where it joins the Pennine Way. 

On meeting Alcomden Water, the route follows a track for several miles from Blake Dean to Shackleton Hill, with ravishing views across Hardcastle Crags towards Slack Heptonstall, with Stoodley Pike in the distance. Eventually it meets a footpath which curves back round through Crimsworth Dean. 

Inspiring and invigorating, this has got to be one of the best walks in the Yorkshire Dales.

 

© Text and images copyright Lesley Jackson