A fine way to spend a weekend

Grace and poise?
Originally uploaded by StripeyAnne.

When you live an hour from one of the finest rock climbing venues in England and possibly the world, it would be rude not to go there at every possible opportunity.

For non rock-climbers, this gritstone edge stretches for six kilometres through the Peak District National Park. It's impressive to just walk along the tops, but for climbers, it's a Mecca

It's not high – maybe 30metres at its highest, so it has nothing on Yosemite, but the rough, rounded gritstone, which is a hardened sandstone, presents a technical challenge and attracts climbers from all over the world.

Here I am struggling up a climb called Kirkus' Corner. I'd like to say I was fantastic and wowed the admiring audience,. but I ran out of strength and, thank goodness, the only witnesses were friends who had the tact and good manners not to tell me I'd fluffed it. They didn't need to – I knew that already! And practice makes perfect!

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You see some things……

Originally uploaded by StripeyAnne.

Our Sunday walk took us to the Peak District and Black Hill in the aptly-named Dark Peak. You get the whole darkness theme here!

Now one thing you don't expect to see near the summit, is a fisherman. Even though it can get quite boggy. But there he was, large as life, fishing rod, flask and butties.

Of course, it wasn't fish he was after, but radio waves. He's part of SOTA (Summits on The Air) http://www.sota.org.uk. These guys test out reception and technical radio stuff which for one thing makes sure there are good systems to help folk like me when we get lost (a high probability) or injured (not so high, but more serious!)

Thanks, guys!

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T’was the weekend before Christmas……

I always like to get my 'flu over with before Christmas. Usually it doesn't work out that way. Usually, it's the Christmas day sniffles. But no. Done with.

So the weekend before Christmas has been eventful and fun. There was a bit of a wobbly start, with the Leaning Christmas Tree of Calverley. I told Noel people would have paid to see it. Well, perhaps not, especially as it leaned so far in the night, it fell over. Cat was unimpressed, it was kind of behaving as if the great big tree in the corner wasn't really there. It's number one suspect in the knocking-the-thing-over stakes. So there had to be un-trimming, re-potting then re-trimming. All very festive and good-humoured, of course!

The skies have emptied themselves of rain for the time being, so we headed for the Peak District. Beautiful countryside. Beautiful day. In't life brilliant?!

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