Blog updates are only on an
"ad hoc" basis when I have something to say and will not be
particularly regular. Latest entries first.
has been suggested to me by several people that I should charge for my walk
information and indeed I have had unsolicited offers of payment (declined)
from people who have used my directions. I am flattered that people think
the information is worth charging for but I have deliberately chosen to keep
it free to encourage walking. If you want to be kind, you could make a donation to the funds to build a bridge over the River
Wharfe via the Burley Bridge Association website at http://www.burleybridge.com/donate.html
live in this Wharfedale village, which is the only one in Wharfedale not to
have a bridge to link it to footpaths at the opposite side of the river.
Crossing of the river Wharfe, one of the fastest rising in the country, is
currently precarious and internmittent, over stepping stones. There has been
one campaign or another to have a bridge built for 120 years and finally,
there is now a chance, as both North Yorkshire and Bradford Councils' Rights
of Way Improvement Plans and the Burley in Wharfedale Neighbourhood
Development Plan, adopted by Bradford Council after the village referendum
in May 2018, are all in support. However £400,000 is needed to build the
bridge and provide a long term fund for maintanance. It will not be funded
from council funds.
bridge will link the south side of the river to footpaths stretching into
Nidderdale and beyond. Various fund raising events have been held and more are
planned but, as they say, every little helps!
exercise to switch the dynamic Ordnance Survey maps over to the new system
is almost complete. Only Devon remains and I anticipate this being completed
within the next week. It has been hard going, as the exercise requires a lot
of concentration. With time for holidays and other needs taken out the net
result is that I now have a number of walks to write up, which will be the
other news, I have discovered that a number of photos can be displayed on
newer iPads with their orientation switched. Some investigation suggests
that this is due to EXIF data (of which I had never previously heard of)
stored on the photo files. It is quite easy to delete this and on one photo
where I have tried it, this seems to resolve the problem. The difficulty of
course is the number of photos involved! As I write there are 360 walks on
the site which means visiting each walk folder to make the correction! If
you are lucky enough to have a newer iPad and find this is an issue, holding
your finger on the offending photo will probably correct it for viewing.
become aware of another site offering free Ordnance Survey route planning
software. I had a quick play with this without looking at any of the
instructional videos and found it pretty intuitive. For details, see GPS
through the updating of the OS maps on each of my walks. Quite hard going
because of the need to concentrate of cutting and pasting exactly the
correct coding, a) to centralise the map, b) to indicate the start point and
c) insert the file name of the relevant .gpx file which informs the route
line. Three areas are complete and the next ongoing. So far 121 have been
done with 'only' another 237 to go! This means there are a total of 358
walks on the site now - which is quite a lot really! It will take as long as
it takes. I like to think I have a life too!
get emails from people who have done my routes with pleasant comments and
everyone mostly seems to find the directions easy to follow, which was the
object of the exercise.
day out yesterday in the Yorkshire Dales from Ribblehead climbing Park Fell
and Simon Fell. Perfect walking conditions. Never been up these hills
before. Could be used as an ascent for Ingleborough though having been up
there many times, I stopped short to descend the "steps" to the
B6255 before circling round under Ribblehead viaduct. The "steps"
are quite a challenge! Very busy at Ribblehead but no matter if you know
where to park! I will be adding the route to the website in due course.
through the updating of the Dynamic OS maps, as detailed below. It is hard
going because the entries have to be spot on. By the time I have done 10/12,
I am bog eyed! Still, I have now done about 50, starting with the Yorkshire
Dales. Only about 300 to go! Apart from a few recent walks, I have started
with 'A' in the Yorkshire Dales and will progress through the rest of them
before moving on to another area.
12 months or so of pretty miserable news, one positive has been a resolution
of a problem, which would have caused all the OS maps displayed for my walks
to disappear round about Autumn 2021, because my IT knowledge was not up to
the job of understanding Ordnance Survey's new system. Thanks to a selfless
bit of help, from someone who understands the computer coding involved, the
problem now seems to be solved. For more details, see Cessation
of OS Open Space Maps.
this day in 1936, a group of surveyors gathered around a white concrete
pillar in a field in Cold Ashby, Northamptonshire, and began the
retriangulation of Great Britain. Happy 85th anniversary to these relics
which are extremely useful for walkers. Itís all satellites now!
received a complaint yesterday from the resident at a farm that walkers had
been trespassing on their land and on enquiry, she discovered they were
using my walking directions! When I looked into the matter, it transpires
that since I did the walk, the official footpath route has changed. I was
able to verify this by checking my original map with the current one. The
lady concerned very kindly provided a corrective paragraph which I have
inserted in the instructions and corrected the maps.
routes sometimes do change, notably to divert walkers from the traditional
route through farmyards. I don't mind this, if the diversion does not add
greatly to the distance, as many farmyards can be a little "messy"
to walk through. However, I do not regularly re-walk my routes because there
are too many and they are too geographically spread. I cannot therefore be
aware of changes unless someone lets me know. If you do, some indication as
to exactly which part of the instructions are outdated and some replacement
wording would be appreciated.
this way, the instructions can be kept relevant for everyone.
personal reasons, I have decided to discontinue accepting direct adverts
from advertisers. These primarily relate to accommodation. As an Amazon Associate I
earn a commission from qualifying purchases plus fees for the insertion of
Google adverts and this income will contribute towards the costs of the
website and incidental costs. I also donate
to charity occasionally, most recently to the Just Giving page for the
Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team member who suffered life changing injuries,
whilst on a "shout" to rescue someone who should not have been on
the fells at all during the Covid lockdown! The rescued person was one of
two campers who were subsequently fines £200 each for breaching lockdown.
The remainder of the site will remain the
same and I will continue to add walks, assuming the pandemic rules allow
greater wandering eventually. It seems to have been a long haul!
On the plus side, I have had my first Covid
jab with no ill effects at all and have some new summer walking boots to
It is now obvious that the new Ordnance
Survey Open Data system mentioned in my Blog comments below (7 January 2021)
is going to result in the cessation of the little OS maps I display for each
walk. The full story can be seen on my Cessation
of OS Open Space page. This is a shame and I feel I am in an "if it
ain't broke, don't fix it" situation but OS have decided to "fix
it". The sketch maps I provide should enable you to identify the routes
on an OS map without too much difficulty. I would always advise puchase of
"proper" maps, at least as back up and not rely solely on
happyhiker.co.uk has now been in existence for 10 years. It seems like
yesterday when I tried to follow walk directions in a well known newspaper,
which were rubbish and thought surely I can do better. An element of conceit
perhaps. At any rate I decided to have a go and after some stumbling around
what is now some very ancient software, I managed to put something together.
I have learned a very small amount about websites but the mysteries of
coding remain impenetrable. The website seems to have been a success judging
from the lovely emails I receive and people seem to find my directions easy
to follow and accurate. There has been the odd query or suggestion and I
always reply and consider whether any improvements/corrections are
main regret is not moving with the times and shifting to some better
software, probably Wordpress but it is the learning curve and the time to do
it which puts me off. The small amount of revenue I derive from adverts does
not permit me to employ the services of any experts and in any case, I want
to keep control. Maybe I'll get round to it. I know the site does not
display ideally on mobile phones and tablets but the directions are still
have had two or three offers to buy the site but never got as far as the
Yorkshire question ('Ow much!) as I have not wanted to sell it. Maybe the
time will come, who knows.
has been a pain to say the least and although I have followed the rules,
they now seem strict than previously so I am currently restricting myself to
walks from my home. Consequently, not many new ones are being added to the
site, though have added a short one today.
thanks to all those who support my site and I hope to keep adding walks as
long as I can put one foot in front of another!
New Year seems a little hollow, given what is happening around the COVID-19
pandemic. It is alarming the number of "Covidiots" who are
claiming it is all part of some conspiracy theory. All Governments want to
get re-elected and trashing the economy will not further that end. I think
it is reasonable therefore to say that if the Government tell us there is a
dangerous pandemic, there is one!
major downside of the pandemic and the consequent lockdown is that we are
prevented from traveling to areas we might like to go to to walk. Although
it is tempting to "stray over the edges" of the rules, even if you
can get away with it, please stay in your own areas to walk. If you live in
the centre of a city with no immediately convenient green space, I think the
rules permit a short journey to find some. "Short" is not defined
but it sure as hell will not mean you can travel 50 or 60 miles to visit the
Lake District, Yorkshire Dales or whatever is your preferred beauty spot.
Police are checking number plates to see where cars have come from and
anyone who has to be rescued by Mountain Rescue Teams can bet that if they
have come from outside the area, the police will be waiting. The more
closely we stick to the rules, the sooner the country will get on top of the
pandemic and the sooner we can all return to visiting out preferred areas.
this subject, in case you haven't noticed, it is winter. It is colder, it
snows and the days are shorter. Mountain Rescue Teams have already had a
high number of call outs resulting from incidents arising from inadequate
equipment or knowledge with the usual proliferation of poor clothing,
risking hypothermia, slips/falls due to lack of correct footwear/crampons
and of course the reliance on mobile phones with no map/compass backup. It
is not fair. Mountain Rescue Teams are made up of volunteers, with jobs and
families. Call outs put them at risk anyway but there is now the added risk
I have made no progress on my understanding of the new Ordinance Survey
setup in relation to the little OS maps I have linked to each walk (see Blog
2020 last entry). It still looks as though from about August 2021, these
will cease to work.
All information on this
site is given in good faith and no liability is accepted in respect of any
damage, loss or injury which might result from acting on it.