North York Moors CAM

 

Monday 8th January 2001

Weather: ( above our heads ) - sunshine at first, then cloudy but staying fine
( below our feet ) - thick, cla-a-rty mud most of the way

Today's walk: Staithes - Port Mulgrave - Hinderwell - Borrowby Dale

( 6½miles )


 

Today's walk starts at Staithes ( pronounced locally as ' Steers' )

Staithes is a quaint North Yorkshire fishing village - over the years it has weathered many a violent storm

 

. . .

Two of its most noteable landmarks are the ' Cod & Lobster ' pub ( left ) which has been damaged
by the sea on numerous occasions ( and rebuilt ) . . .

. . . and Captain Cook's cottage, which at one time was the draper's shop where the famous man worked
before he set out on his adventures at sea

 

From Captain Cook's cottage, we leave the village and climb steeply up Church Street towards the cliff-top path

 

We're now on the Cleveland Way and here we look back towards the towering cliffs of Boulby ( the highest in England )

 

The path suddenly became very muddy - and that set the trend for most of today's walk

 

All along the Cleveland Way there are many excellent bed & breakfast accommodations !!!

 

A steady climb takes us up the slopes of Beacon Hill . . .

 

. . . before reaching the small village of Port Mulgrave and the view south-east towards Lingrow Cliffs and Kettleness beyond

 

. . .

At this point I decided to descend the steep stone steps and slippery slopes to the little old harbour far down below

The words on this memorial plaque a third of the way down read:

' Wilf's Way '
improvements to this public footpath were
designed and initiated by Wilf Mackinder
of Port Mulgrave who died on 29th April 1984
This plaque was erected by the
North York Moors National Park Committee
in his memory and as a tribute to his endeavour

After finally overcoming the difficulties of the steep cliffside slopes all I can say is,

' Thanks Wilf '

 

I'm almost down there - to the little ruined harbour of Port Mulgrave . . .

. . . worked from 1857- 1881
Originally stone was shipped to Jarrow using a wooden jetty. By 1859 a stone harbour was constructed and stone was shipped to the Tyne. At this time shafts were put down on the quayside to the main seam 60 ft below sea level with the workings extending as far as Staithes. In 1875 the tunnel entrance to Port Mulgrave was extended through the hill to Dalehouse so that stone from the nearby Grinkle mine could be shipped from the harbour. In World War Two engineers blew up the harbour breakwater as an anti-invasion measure.

 

However, as we approach closer, the place has still retained lots of its charm and romantic character . . .

 

On the hillside, just right of centre of this photograph is the arched, bricked-up entrance to the ironstone drift mine

 

The features of cliff-side still show much evidence of its past industrial history . . .

 

. . . whilst below, the brightly painted fishing cobbles are all that remain to carry on any tradition

 

The last, remaining ruins of the jetty

 

. . .

Old wooden railway sleepers, lobster pots, ropes and fishing nets lie against the tin-sheeting clad huts
that make up this ' shanty town '

 

After a long, tough climb back up the cliff-side we look back down to the little old harbour of Port Mulgrave . . .

. . . just try to imagine the large sailing vessels that once moored next to that small quayside
being loaded with tons of iron ore in readiness for their journey north to Tyneside

 

. . .

From here we continue south along the cliff-top path of the Cleveland Way before turning inland just before Runswick Bay . . .

 

. . . and emerging at this point near the ' top' of the village and more ' 5 star accommodation '

After my recent exertions down to Port Mulgrave the last thing on my mind was
attempting to tackle the steep bank leading down to Runswick and then the climb back up again

If you'd like to see some pics of Runswick Bay click here for some I took earlier last year

From Runswick we follow the road to Hinderwell . . .

 

. . .

. . . before turning down the lane between houses at the footpath sign ( above left )
and then, after a very muddy half a mile of track, following the path down to the woods of Borrowby Dale

 

After a pleasant ½ mile of woodland path we emerge at the hamlet of Dalehouse

From here it's just a short, steep climb up the road and back into Staithes


 

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