Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hawes, North Yorkshire

We're into a several-day rainy stretch right now, which means no walks outdoors, and it's not like I'm eager to get on the treadmill! I'm not sure my treadmill would even remember me. Around here, rain means that the dogs track in mud, which is why, until they've dried off, they are gated in the kitchen which has a vinyl floor. Bridger spends his time sleeping on his bed; Misty spends her time whining to get into the office where we are. It's amazing how she's managed to make her whining sound so convincingly mournful! But I will NOT be manipulated! :-)

Fortunately, we're going to miss the next week of rain, for we're going to be leaving for Texas, and Angela just wrote to tell me that yesterday it was 74 degrees and sunny in Denton! Their 10-day forecast is for 60s and sun. Boy am I looking forward to that! We never know what it will be like here when we return, though. Maybe all our snow will be gone or maybe we'll be driving home through a blizzard. March is like that.

I thought that today would be a good day to share a few photos of the little village of Hawes, which is located in the Yorkshire Dales. Hawes has a population of roughly 1200 people and is situated at the western end of North Yorkshire, as you can see by the map above (which, by the way, was borrowed from I had thought I'd use a photo I'd taken of my Yorkshire map, but it didn't turn out very readable.)

The River Ure runs through Hawes which is at the head of Wensleydale. Interesting note: Most of the other Dales are named after the river that runs through them, e.g. The River Swale runs through Swaledale; the River Nidder through Nidderdale; The Wharf River through Wharfdale, etc.

In case you don't recognize this gentleman and his dog, please let me introduce you to Wallace and Gromit. Wallace and Gromit and their Real Wensleydale Cheese are what helped get the Wensleydale Creamery back on its feet after being at a financial low point. In fact, they had thought they might have to close altogether. Wallace and Gromit fame changed all that.

Here's the Wensleydale Creamery where cheese is still hand packed, and the lucky visitor gets to watch the process through huge windows:

The best part, however, is the gift shop, because there many types of cheese samples are piled onto plates and you can try as many as you like! They are amazing! And the various flavors of cheeses are affected by the maturity of grasses the sheep eat. Every last one was delicious, and no, I didn't try ALL of them, but many of them. :-) I mean, after all...

In this photo, you can see the backdrop of the steep hill and valley behind Hawes. This is such a spectacular setting!

I was surprised to find this pen and its resident horse and Border Collie right in the middle of town. Can you see the horse there in the center of the photo? The man tending them looked quite poor. When I talked to our B&B manager about it later, she said, 'Oh don't let him fool you. That man has prime acreage that would bring him a fortune whenever he wanted to sell it.' I thought that was interesting, and it's true that land and buildings there are very expensive to purchase. It's become trendy to visit these little villages now. I'm sure it wasnt all that fun for the people who built them and lived there without central heating.

I learned that it was common for bikers to congregate here on Sunday afternoons. So you think helmets cause balding?

Hawes would be a great stopping place on your way from Leyburn to the Lake District. Although Leyburn and Hawes are only 16.5 miles apart, and according to MapQuest you can drive there in 27 minutes, don't believe it! Everything takes a lot longer because the roads are narrow and winding and shoulders are virtually non-existent. But the scenery is worth every bit of it, and you'll find yourself wanting to pull off the road every few minutes to take photos of the breathtaking beauty all around.

And yes, I'm sure that spells 'T-O-U-R-I-S-T.' But in my experience, the natives have proved to be quite friendly and forgiving.


Deborah said...

I really like the travel posts and your photos are always beautiful. You should write for a travel magazine. I don't think helmets bald men until they are about 65 or so. :D Hawes looks like a perfectly lovely town. One that I wouldn't mind spending some time in especially sampling the cheese. I did look for the horse but never did find him. (I never was good at Waldo books either.) :)

Cranberry Morning said...

Thanks, Deb. I'd love to write for a travel magazines if they would pay all my expenses for a year's stay in England and all I had to write about was Yorkshire and Herefordshire. :-) Let me know if you see that job description posted anywhere.

Look in the exact center of the photo. If you go down about half an inch, you will run into two ears. Those are horse ears. :-)

Heide at ApronHistory said...

I was doing a little catch up reading this morning as I have been in Texas too! Very nice weather, except one day it rained. We always bring some rain with us when we visit!
I finally looked at a map of England. I always forget how north New Castle upon Tyne is. Our Great-Great-Great Grandfather Thomas came over in 1871. And amazingly, we still do have relitaves in England!! We found them through geneology. Her great-great great grandmother was a sister of Thomas! It is so amazing!
Enjoy your trip to Texas! Hopefully your planes will be on time and not run into bad weather like ours did! But if you are flying into the Dallas area, that might be non stop and that will help! Have fun! Heide

Cranberry Morning said...

Thanks, Heidi.
We're looking for sun and temps in the 60s in TX. Hope you took the rain with you when you left. :-) We're driving rather than flying, so we'll probably only run into tornadoes.:-(

It's so odd about the North in England. When you're on the M1 (freeway) and are headed toward Yorkshire, for example, the big roadsign reads simply, 'The North,' as though any place north (Yorkshire, Northumberland, Scotland, etc.) of where you currently are is beyond the edge of the earth and not to be bothered with. Quite odd.


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