Continuing good weather greeted the Weekend Wanderers boarding the coach in Waterdale.  Today’s linear walk of around 9 miles was lead by Brian.

Jean introduced new walkers, Irene and David (another David!!!) and they were welcomed to the group. Walkers were also reminded to drink plenty – water of course!! as today was expected to be extremely warm and sunny.

8 non walkers were dropped off in Ripon, leaving 36 walkers starting todays walk from West Tanfield.  Leaving the village, the route followed a path through fields, passing Quarry House Farm to the edge of a small copse before reaching Sleningford caravan and camping site on the edge of the River Ure.  Dave C pointed out an unusual clump of chicory, normally a cultivated plant and also a Brimstone butterfly.  This was one of many butterflies seen today, no doubt enjoying the warm weather together with our walkers!   Continuing along the river bank, an abundance of dragonflies, their brightly coloured wings seen shining in the sun, flitted amongst the reeds.  The usual waterfowl, mallard, moorhen and coot, were also seen close to the river bank.  North Stainley, an exceptionally pretty village was soon reached with the Staveley Arms providing a welcome venue to stop for refreshments at lunchtime.  See Gallery.

The afternoon walk commenced at 13.10 hrs, and joined the Ripon Rowel, a popular long distance 50 mile circular walk around the Ripon area, the latter part of the walk again taking a path alongside the River Ure until Ripon itself was reached.  Boots were happily removed and ice creams were the order of the day in the ancient market square before boarding the coach to return to Doncaster.

Brian was thanked for a lovely walk taking in the beautiful countryside of North Yorkshire – God’s own county!!