Ash Tree & Ingleborough-02A single ash tree grows from the edge of an exposed limestone bed below Twisleton Scars near Ingleton, Yorkshire Dales National Park. Above Ingleton, between the two rivers which form the famous Ingleton Waterfalls Walk, lies an elevated plateau of land. It is in fact the southwestern end of the long ridge that is Whernside, the highest of the Yorkshire Dales Three Peaks.
Recently I discovered the origin of its name, which comes from the tongue of land between the joining of the two rivers, otherwise known as a Twisle, hence the name Twisleton.
This tongue of land drops steeply down to the rivers confluence leaving exposed beds of limestone escarpments of varying thickness known locally as scars. The area is a favourite with local climbers as well as photographers.
I'm lucky to have it right on the doorstep.
After a rather prolonged dreary period of weather, a welcome break finally arrived and it was time to head out with my new camera to revisit some of the locations I had photographed previously. Mainly to see how the new camera performed compared to the old, but also to enjoy a bit of warm summer sun in a great location.
Climbing up from the valley bottom I made my first stop at a lone ash tree, shadows cast by scattered clouds drifted lazily across the fields below. I sat for a moment to take in the surroundings, the sun was warm but the breeze felt cool as the cloud shadows passed over head.
The sound of skylarks in the skies above, mingled with a distant tractor labouring in a field of freshly mown grass in the dale below. Everywhere, looking green and vibrant.
A little further up the slope, a small hawthorn stretches out into the valley from a narrow cleft between the limestone rocks.
Small leaves, upturned, catch the summer sun, harvest this solar power to store it in the multitude of small green berries which will ripen bright red in the autumn.
Fieldfares, winter migrant birds, which come when the days grow short and cold, will then feast on these same berries and be sustained until the days grow to be warm and long once again and they leave for far distant lands.
But that is still some months away, the summer birds are here now, skylarks, wheatears, to name but a couple. I wish I was better able to identify some of the others. There is moment in the grass, grasshoppers, or crickets maybe.
Insects buzz, birds sing.
The sound of the tractor has faded, it sits motionless in its field of neatly lined up rows of cut grass. It must be lunch time.
I decide to climb higher before I allow myself to sit and eat mine
Limestone & AshWind sculpted ash tree on the limestone pavements above Twisleton Scar. After a steep climb, the ground levels out in a mixture of rough grassland and limestone pavement. Finding a sheltered spot away from the wind I tuck into my home cooked ham and pickle roll, delicious!
Lunch break gives me time to take in my new location, I've visited here many times before, but the trees and landscape are ever changing, and fine details can be overlooked or forgotten between visits. It is nice to sit and have a rest.
A large ash tree grows from a jumble of limestone block. The trees all take on that wind fashioned shape, long branches one side, short on the other. No guessing which way the prevailing wind blows here.
Closer inspection reveals hollow branches, handy for nesting owls but there are none in residence. I wonder how many more years before these branches, thinning from within, succumb to the power of the wind and fall to the stones below. Perhaps the owls already know.