Monday, 8 August 2011

Comfortable (and uncomfortable) billets

While on the subject of yellow underwings, here's one which knows a nice berth when it sees one. Penny had just finished getting our spare room ready for a cousin's stay, when it flew in and settled down. Here it is again, largely to show the amazing difference in colouring when you suppress flash.

The uncomfortable billet of this post's title is occupied by the world's hardiest Willow Herb, seen here clinging to the top of one of the extraordinary Norber Erratics above Austwick (lovely, lovely village and home of the truly excellent Game Cock pub). Rather deplorably, I have lived 61 years before visiting these geological wonders - enormous boulders left over from the glacial melt and perched on little plinths of underlying limestone which they have protected from the surrounding erosion (limestone being very soft, as W.H.Auden memorably described - goodness this post is full of links).

Here is an erratic, above, with my helpful hand (and boot) pointing at the plinth. The surrounding grassland is truly lovely, with wildflowers dotted about such as these harebells, this time with Penny's finger for scale. Down Crummackdale there are three fine clapper bridges, one of them just above an old sheepwash. Then a narrow, walled lane to the hamlet of Wharfe and back to the Game Cock for Sunday roast.

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