I was on my own today, a rucksack was prepared with all the essential stuff and a lift was offered...drop off and make my own way home, I had a route in mind that was a little longer than I normally do nowadays but gentle slopes are easy on the joints.
The walk began at Redcar Tarn on the hill between Steeton and Keighley, plenty of birds around and an easy stroll to loosen up.
This pair of tufted ducks, female and male respectively, were the selected photographs from here, now the walk begins in earnest and I head towards Steeton. The wind was pretty gusty up here, just short of 1000ft asl, and what I thought was a firmly wedged baseball cap became airborne...and landed in a field that seemed bereft of gates! A bit of wall climbing ensued but at least I retrieved my favourite cap!!
A mile or so of tarmac treading passed easily as the sun shone, a pied wagtail was singing merrily as it strutted on a walltop.
Another stretch of tarmac bashing now as I needed to cross the river to head in my intended direction, sometimes while road walking I fill the time with a bit of lateral thinking...if I needed a table top this is the place to go, crafty eh:-))
A lengthy wait at Cross Hills while three trains rattled by delayed me a little but the sun shone brightly and here down in the valley the wind was not as bad. I took to the riverbank at Kildwick, a half mile stretch yielded little in the way of wildlife although a lovely grey wagtail flew past without suggesting it would land within a convenient distance. I cut up through some fields now to the Leeds Liverpool canal, I was getting hungry and it was time for a break. I found a lovely place to sit for a while, sunny and out of the wind and with the bonus of Canada geese and goosanders to photograph as I dined.
Time to resume the walk now and I headed towards Silsden, a short delay on the way as I met two good friends walking in the opposite direction and we chatted for a few minutes. Passing through my hometown I kept to the canal path, mid afternoon now and the lowering sun cast a beautiful light across the valley.
I was nearing Low Holden Farm now and this would be my turning point, another rest beckoned and more coffee was needed too! A resting female mallard and a noisy moorhen were near my chosen picnic spot.
A lovely mistle thrush settled in a nearby tree, the sun gleaming on its feathers.
Here by Holden Beck and some disused lime kilns I finished the contents of my thermos flask and enjoyed my memories of a grand day.