Local Loop


Richard Bell's Wild West Yorkshire nature diary, Sunday, 6th January, 2008


henWHICH WAY? There’s only an hour before it gets dark. Once we’ve walked the long straight stretch of towpath to the Figure of 3 locks I don’t really feel like retracing our steps; in that direction you see Horbury Bridge in the distance and it seems a long slog along the hedged in corridor of the canal before you get any nearer to it.

We meet my old school chum Paul who suggests that we head off to the left via the Smithy Brook valley. Some day we must explore it but my idea to is head straight on along the towpath towards Savile Town, Dewsbury, and catch the bus back.

As we get to the lock house we decide to turn right to cross the Calder and go up Healey Road to South Ossett, then cut across the fields to Manorfields, Horbury, where we beg a cup of tea from Barbara’s mum.

Oxford ragwortI was mentioning last week that I was dreaming of being able to get out walking at will in the countryside and I hope we’ll get out again soon but at least this improvised walk has been a good weekend break, a mini-adventure, before Barbara and I settle down to a week of indoor work on Monday morning.

There are several pens of free range hens , accompanied by strutting cockerels alongside the canal, most of them look like old varieties. In South Ossett the roadside weed, Oxford Ragwort, is in flower.