Bolam Lake in the eerie mist, Northumberland, England.

Today felt a bit eerie and maybe the Hurricane which we’re expecting helped to create such an effect on the weather today. The skies were almost dimmed uncontrollably and this mist appeared over the baron fields of Northumberland, creating a lost and unforgiven landscape in its wake. It was almost as if we were living in a completely new atmosphere where new gases were lurking. But lo and behold i had no difficulty breathing and so oxygen still prevailed in this atmosphere.

So i was sat inside thinking, i wonder how good Bolam Lake would look surrounded by this eerie mist, so i jumped up, got changed and headed straight for the Bolam Lake.

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This picture epitomised the eerie mist which refused to lift over the lake.

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Visibility had been turned down a notch or two.

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Here we have an empty boardwalk accompanied only with leaves which have fallen from the tree.

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Two swans gliding elegantly round Bolam Lake.

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Incoming trio of Swans about to land on Bolam Lake.

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Autumn coloured leaves floating helplessly.

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Many leaves which are yet to fall to their fate.

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A close up shot of Autumn leaves and a blurred out Swan.

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Bird’s nests becoming increasingly exposed from tree’s losing their leaves.

Swanning off into the distance!

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Close-up of a Cattail. Typical pond furniture!

A collection of today’s photo’s.

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Seaton Sluice and the Oiled up Cormorant, Northumberland, England.

This jaunt of ours was specifically to go somewhere near the coast and go for a walk, so when we both agreed to venture round Seaton Sluice to blow off some steam it felt like the perfect location to do just that!

Seaton Sluice is literally a couple miles South of Blyth and only a few miles North of Whitley Bay. Seaton Sluice have their own beaches which are lovely and there’s also a nice walk which flows inland with the river.


We parked in the Melton Constable car park and followed the steps down to the river. From the river we continued to walk further inland away from the coast, as the plan was to go full circle. As we began to walk further, we came across an old boat which had capsized and there appeared to be a Cormorant which looked like it had oil on it, so we rang the RSPCA and reported it.

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Either the Cormorant was ok and it was just chilling or it really was covered in oil, but it seemed as though it was struggling to flap its wings and motivate itself to take off. However, RSPCA were informed and after we had done our full circle, we decided to walk back and check on it, and by this point it had disappeared. However, one of the other pictures does suggest that there might be diesel or oil trickling out from somewhere and going into the River.

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I particularly enjoy this photo where the light is hitting certain spots on the field and the Cow’s continue to roam free until the sun goes down.


As you keep walking, you end up practically on the road, we turned left in the direction towards the coast, where the views of St.Mary’s Island were clearly visible from Seaton Sluice. St.Mary’s Island has a beautiful lighthouse and has been renovated so many times over, and is one of Whitley Bay’s major landmarks.

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St Mary’s Lighthouse.

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This horse in particular appeared to enjoy the photo shoot and stuck around for a few minutes before trotting off.


As we nearly completed our full circle round Sluice, we passed a few more landmarks on our way before it was time for FISH AND CHIPS. We hadn’t had any for such a long time, and as a small treat and reward for completing such a “long” walk we both agreed it was much deserved.


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The Harbour View is where we chose to have our Fish & Chips, and we didn’t regret it one bit, the portion’s were generous, staff were lovely and it tasted absolutely fantastic. I’d recommend this place to anyone who might be driving through and need something to eat.

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There’s nothing more comforting than being sat outside with a box of Fish & Chips and watching the World go by.

Simonside Hills – A walk amongst the Heather in the deceptive heat. Northumberland, England.

Simonside Hills was our go to choice for the day and it did not disappoint, as Monday was going to be the best and most reliable day for weather we thought we best take advantage of that. We drove up to Morpeth then decided to take the route into Mitford and beyond, passing hamlets on our way up. As you approach fontburn lake, keep going for a further couple miles and you’ll see a brown sign directing you to Simonside and the car park is easy enough to find and it’s free!!

From the car park there is a sign which points you in two directions, either you go to spy law via the Simonside Hills or you can either go to Rothbury. We chose to ascend to Simonside using the steps adjacent to the car park. As you climb and reach the top of the steps, there’s another sign, one which is “St. Oswald’s Way” and one which is “Public Footpath”. We did take “St.Oswald’s Way” but on reflection should’ve chosen the other as it meant we could’ve walked over the Hills rather than round them but it was still a decent stretch regardless.

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Here you can see the footpath which takes you directly over the hills.

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The Heather this time of year is always in full swing, and it really helps to transform the hills over the period of Winter to Summer.

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Taking the ‘St.Oswald’s’ route was actually pretty good and it gave us a whole new perspective.


A few more pictures of what was taken along the way, more of the same really, but beautiful all the same.

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Ravenous honey bee’s collecting the pollen from the Heather.

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Simonside from the other side.

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A few sheep part-timing in the grass. It’s a hard life.

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Autumn appears to be already prevailing in the last pic in this slideshow. Either that, or it may likely be diseased. I loved the contrast of orange and green.

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The old famous grouse captured taking flight. They were tricky characters to capture because they would wait until last minute then fly off and by that point my reaction speed had already failed me.

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The texture in the grass contrast with the Heather is beautiful.

To complete the collection, i end with this collage of pictures, which again illustrate the beauty encompassing Simonside Hills.

It’s well worth a visit, the views are breath-taking and it gets you out the house for a bit.

Allendale, Northumberland.

Our travels took us to South-West Northumberland, a place which i myself have not had the pleasure of walking around. There are many places round this beautiful part of Northumberland to walk, but for us we chose to walk round Deneholm woods which is literally right next to the small village of Allendale.

We parked in Allendale itself, which was easily accessible, parking places were crying out for cars. We decided to walk from Allendale town centre back over the bridge and up the hill which then took us to an opening to Deneholm woods. The woods have been well looked after, walks clearly sign posted and wooden bridges built to walk across the River Allen.

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Above are a few pictures taken from our walk at the beginning.


As we got out from Deneholm woods we began to approach a few houses/cottages, one of which had around 20 to 30 chickens casually exploring the local environs.

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I’m no expert but as the back of the car clearly states, this is a Rover, an old one at that but it has been kept in such pristine condition that it deserved to be framed. What an absolute beauty.


We decided to go back from the cottages as time was getting on and the route appeared exhausted as there were no clear visible paths so we walked and from this bridge i was able to capture some wildlife, or at least i tried to frame it.


On we went, back to the town of Allendale by going back the same way we came. The walk itself is about 2 miles long. Serious walkers need not apply but anyone who would like to enjoy a small but peaceful walk then this is the one. Once we were back at Allendale, this pub we were sure kept calling our names, so we thought it would be rude not to go in buy a pint!

Cragside, Northumberland – Part Three

Part Three is the last chapter of the album which I’d like to share with you all. We walked back from the Garden to the car park and followed the paths which took us further up the hill and away from Cragside House. The paths were great and i could imagine them being super fun for families to enjoy too.


The first picture is the cafe which you can find walking back from the gardens, and at the iron bridge turn left on your way to the other pump house. After the pump house, you go up some steps near a reservoir and the cafe is on your way towards the car park. As we began the walks, you get a different perspective of Cragside House.

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The start of the trail pretty much sets the standard in terms of how beautiful the walk is.


Using the macro lense to take close up’s of moss and small tree’s, sometimes using it to take pictures of things further away which is a bit of a rookie error.


All of a sudden, you get ‘that feeling’ something could be moving so you look, and lo and behold a red squirrel was scurrying around the tree’s. Quickly, i tried to swap lenses so i could get closer to it, you can just about make it out through the branches as it was trying its best to disguise itself.


There are also fun things for Children to feast their eyes on and learn in the process, various animals and insects which have been made and planted on the trail. Due to my macro lense, there was a picture of a place in the middle of the trail which serves as a midway point, picnic benches, play area to sit and rest, unfortunately this picture was too blurry to illustrate. There was also a labyrinth which was brilliant and we pretty much got lost in it for a while which was good fun. This demonstrates the hard work that has gone in to make Cragside the place it is today, a place where you can discover despite getting lost along the way. Definitely recommended.


After we got to the lakes it was time to make our way back. Apparently, there is over 40 miles of walks to discover so we only covered maybe 6 or 7. Another 33 or 34 to go…

Craster – Dunstanburgh Castle – Embleton Bay & back again…

It’s not every day the Sun comes out to dance with Northumberland, but when it does, it simply gives Northumberland the shine it deservedly needs after the Winter months. Therefore, my partner and I decided we’d visit Craster for some much needed peace and tranquility, and the idea succeeded and went beyond all expectations. The backdrop of Dunstanburgh Castle from Craster serves as a reminder for a land full of historic battles, defending ourselves from the Scots who would often invade Northumberland as a way of attacking the English.

Not much is left of Dunstanburgh Castle, but as it is an English Heritage Site, it thankfully attracts many visitors from around the Country and Abroad to visit. For full information of the site itself, please click on the hyperlink provided above. Despite there not being much left of Dunstanburgh Castle itself, you can still appreciate the scale of the Castle in its prime. The walk itself was enough to stretch our legs but it’s also a great way of inhaling some much needed fresh air, getting away from it all, and about being ‘in the moment’.


Below is a close up of the entrance to Dunstanburgh Castle.

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As you can see, the clear day enhanced the quality of the pictures ten fold. We were lucky to have such a beautiful day on the cards as it had been forecast for cloud all that day. Against all odds, algorithms, predictions… the sun prevailed victorious. We sat outside and had our lunch, taking in the view from Dustanburgh Castle back over to Craster, the landscape is absolutely stunning and it’s easy to see why this land is an AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). Below is a picture of the view we had from the Castle with Craster in the backdrop. The sea glistening, flowering bushes and green fields as far as the eyes can see.

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After our much needed lunch, we decided to continue walking round the Castle from the outside, heading in the direction of Embleton Bay which we could see North of us lying in the distance. Descending the hill in which the almighty ancient ruins lay on, we took a couple of pictures of the rocks, cliffs in which sea faring birds have come to roost and of the Dunstanburgh Golf Course, luckily, all golfers were on form and we were able to stroll without being hit.

The path took us on towards Embleton Bay, meandering on the outskirts of the Golf Course we passed a couple pillboxes from the World War era, purposely built to defend the land from any attacks or to spot any potential invasions. Embleton Bay itself, is pristine, the dunes peer over and stretch for a good distance. There were all sorts of activities going on, from locals walking their dogs, people building sand castles which were close to emulating Dunstanburgh’s scale!!

We didn’t spend much time on Embleton Bay despite its true beauty, the only reason being, we were hungry and we needed to be fed so we headed back on ourselves to Craster.  As we’d heard so much about two things in Craster, one being how good the kippers are and how they’re famous for them, and the other how good the food is at ‘The Jolly Fisherman‘, we thought, it would be rude not to try both. I would definitely recommend their seafood platter, consisting of  fresh rolled herring which had been pickled, a slice of fresh salmon, crab pate, salmon pate, trout pate and a small serving of prawn marie-rose presented inside an oyster shell. The beef dripping chips along with the soup of the day did not disappoint either, and our complimentary pints in the sun went down a treat with the sun continuing to burn the back of my neck!

Please find a few pictures of the small beautiful fishing village of Craster, The Jolly Fisherman, Shoreline Cafe & Traditional Fish Smokers establishment and the lovely view from where we sat at The Jolly Fisherman overlooking Dunstanburgh Castle. If you visit The Jolly Fisherman, please bear in mind that it can be busy therefore you might expect to wait a little while but the service is fantastic and the food didn’t take long to find its way to our table. The smokehouse which is adjacent to the Jolly Fisherman smokes kippers to perfection, and it is easy to see why Craster is famous for them as we grilled them lightly back at home along with the fishcakes we bought too for a little treat.

Accessibility to Craster is excellent, there is plenty of parking available although it is quite popular when it’s a beautiful day and you might be surprised to see how many bays are filled so to avoid any disappointment, ensure you arrive early as possible in the day to seize it. Parking all day is relatively cheap and recommended if you wish to take in the sites and go for a bite to eat. Until next time Craster, the pleasure has been ours!