|New Boots! Pair #6b.|
|All we have of the Kirkstall Forge development so far, plus the Rive Aire.|
|Hawksworth Road provide suburbia in Horsforth Woodside.|
The village growth stretches on past the Breary Lane East corner for quite a way, ensuring some fine views from the many back windows of the houses, which finally ends as we meet the bank with Wood Top farm upon it, swinging around and through the woods to receive a fine view across Wharfedale when we re-emerge, looking across to the Washburn valley and Norwood Edge, with the Snow clad moors rising far in the distance beyond. On down though the woods again, in a deep groove with care take to avoid the traffic again, greeting the Border Collie out patrolling the fields before we swing down into the fields that spread out on the north side of the Wharfe, passing the Swiss Cottage and the bold hedges which surround Creskeld Hall, only briefly glimpsed, and not from its best angle as viewed from its driveway, loitering in the shadow of the railway embankment carrying the line to Harrogate. Attention can focus forward from here, as we run up to Creskeld Grange, home to its own Fresian herd, and the outer western edge of Arthington, clustered around the Chapel conversion, and sight of our destination comes clear, of Arthington (or Wharfedale) viaduct, rising over the Wharfe at the far end of Warren Lane. Down there we head, using the camera to photograph the distant Arthington Hall, and the nearby perching Starling, running right up to the edge of massive railway embankment, and finding some nice house down here beyond Warren Farm, though their location seems tenuous until you find the remains of the old pumping station by the riverside. attention can then focus on the viaduct, soaring over the river on a long 500 yard curve, on 21 broad arches and still going strong since opening in 1849, and I'm frankly delighted to have arrived with the winter sun still in the sky and perfectly located for illumination, which shows I got my timing right to arrive here three hours into the day. I'd loiter for late lunch if it wasn't so damned cold, which the feet are feeling now, so no route will be made down the right of way to the former Castley ford, and thus tracks must be retraced after taking many pictures from both sides of the viaduct's arc, rejoining the track down to the sewage works and doing my best to hammer it out on tiring legs, knowing that the route back will be all uphill as the bus service on the A659 is just too irregular to be useful and a break in the Wharfedale Inn would scupper my day completely.
We still having things to seek out once we've passed under the railway's Pool Bridge though, heading up Station Road, past the previously observed Railway cottages, and alongside the embankment, to find my new camera is much better at looking into the sun than old one was, as we seek out the remains of the of NER Arthington Junction, and its associated station, which ran services through to Otley from north and south from 1865 to 1965. The line is obvious from the tree line heading to the west, and the road passes a big cattle creep before meeting the large bridge below the northern side of the triangle, the lane heading up to the station, now largely concealed by fences but still enduring in private hands, whilst the footpath carries on to the passage below the southern arm, offering no sight of the gasworks building inside the triangle, hidden away by more fences. Pass under the southern arm, hopeful that the line to Pool and Otley may one day revive, and head uphill as the old railway swings west, and the contemporary one runs south to meet the southern end of the triangle, where the station's foot tunnel still endures, meaning it surely had four platforms at its peak, and then we'll stick to the path as it rises south, hopeful of getting a look to the distant Bramhope Tunnel, which can be seen with a telephoto-ed picture, though my eye mistakes the speed limit sign for apparent light from the southern end, more than 2 miles away. Stick to the edge of the railway's plot, as the footpath wanders off towards Staircase Lane, because I want another look at the north tunnel portal, but when I can sneak into the plot, I'm way higher than the top of the portal, deep in the woods below, and it's far to steep to approach directly, and even sneaking around to find the track that rises up through the woods is harder and more treacherous than it need be, so there's surely a lesson in there. So out onto Creskeld Drive to push back though the civilised suburbia of Bramhope, scattered on the hillside that we have to ascend, to Creskeld Cresent and Breary Lane East, just shy of the A660 again, watching the winter sunshine fades away as the walking day comes to its end, checking my time to see that it's been a slow day, as we arrive at the bus stop opposite Tredgold Avenue at 2.45pm. It's a predictably cold conclusion to the day as we await the X84 homewards, but the delay allows me to wield the camera again to photograph the Red Kites flying high above, and despite the soreness in my legs, it's been a good first day out in new boots, with my new toy promising more fun for me as the year unfolds.
2018 Total: 9.1 miles
Up Country Total: 2842 miles
Solo Total: 2861.3 miles