Sheepwash Oakdale Osmotherley

Sheepwash Oakdale Osmotherley CircularNo sooner have I begun the recovery process from my adventure up Roseberry and I’m asked if I fancy a walk. Dave Rider is on the ‘phone, fortunately, he means tomorrow (it’s still Tuesday). The hour that I spent in the gym plus the aforementioned foray up the Matterhorn means I really should do a recovery day. You’d think I knew what I was talking about 🙂 I said yes, provided it’s only a couple of miles. “No probs”, was the reply. Sooo, a few calls later and we’re quorate. Pete Hymer, George Renwick, me and said Dave are heading for the parking area near Sheep Wash. The intention is to take the old drover road for about three-quarters of a mile, turn right to the reservoir, a quick jog around that and back to the car, around a couple of miles.

As we vacate the car we’re giggling like school kids as we recall some names from the past. I regaled them of a message sent to me by Emma when I put a photograph of a Christmas Concert organised by a Mike Hunt asking if I really knew someone with such a name. Dave’s contribution was Phillip Enis who, apparently signed himself only with his initial and surname. Yes, infantile but we were on a roll 🙂

We set off in good spirit across the bridge at Sheep Wash and up onto the drovers’ road. We live in a fabulous part of the world and although the wind is blowing it’s also refreshing, good walking weather. We arrive at the right turn to go down through the forest to the reservoir and change our minds. You see planning is important and sticking to the plan, imperative. We’re now going for the full 10k past Chequers and down by the old disused reservoirs.

There’s a group of ramblers heading in the opposite direction all waving and wishing us a cheery good morning. This sets us up, we’re so buoyant and happy that if we were cyclists we’d have flies in our teeth!

We pass Chequers and the sign is still there from the old days when it was a pub:

“Be not in haste,
Step in and taste,
Ale tomorrow for nothing”.

Obviously, tomorrow never comes so they’re on a safe offering.

We turn right and enjoy the view down towards Vale of York and make our way past the disused reservoirs, the top one has now been filled in.

We eventually emerge at the road that we crossed a little earlier that goes to Chequers and make our way into the valley. A swift turn right takes us along the valley bottom and it’s really pretty with the stream rambling its way in the opposite direction over mini waterfalls and under bridges. The daffodils are still out so it’s even more colourful.

We turn left over a bridge and take the photo opportunity then up the lung expanding steps to climb the valley wall to the snicket that brings us through the cottages to the village cross.

The Queen Catherine does us proud with Corn Beef Pie (highly recommended) and Cod and Chips. You need to be aware that all food is cooked properly i.e. no microwave, so don’t expect it in five minutes.

An hour later we leave the Queen Cath and head up the road to Sheep Wash which is about a mile and a half but we’ve tightened up a bit whilst sitting in the pub so it’s a bit of struggle for a few minutes.

Back at the car and we’re looking at 9.4km (a smidgen under 6 miles in real units) in three hours including just under an hour for lunch. Not bad for a bunch of giggling sometimes infantile, sometimes intellectual and (very) occasionally serious 60-year-olds. Good company and a good laugh.

Enjoy the snaps…G..x

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