Friday, October 09, 2015


click photo to enlarge
Many keen walkers know that some of the best under-foot conditions for their pastime is limestone upland. The relatively free draining surface, that is often farmed with sheep, frequently has a short, mud-free turf, and offers conditions that contrast greatly with the wetter conditions found on less permeable rocks such as millstone grit and granite.

That is not to say that water isn't found on limestone: it is, particularly in areas where it has been glaciated and till was spread and dumped in the distant past. And even where these conditions don't prevail heavy and persistent rainfall can produce temporary streams and pools. But, all that not withstanding, water and wet conditions are much less frequent on limestone and it makes good walking country.

Today's photograph shows three prominent corallian outcrops of limestone. On the right is Attermire Scar, in the centre Warrendale Knotts, and on the left (in the shadow of cloud), an unnamed (or unknown to me) outcrop. They exhibit the typical cliffs, caves and scree of  this type of landscape. What is less common is the large, fairly flat area of grass and marsh in the centre of the landscape. This is called Attermire and is the mire (marsh) after which the area is named. It is an area of little use for livestock but a great place for birds, plants and insects. I have spent more than a few happy hours sitting on Warrendale Knotts with binoculars, scanning the area for wildlife, listening to the curlew's warbling whistle, the lapwing's plaintive cry and the raven's harsh croak.

On our most recent visit the weather was what I consider to be perfect for photographing this kind of landscape - cloud with sun periodically breaking through - conditions that give saturated colours, contrast and interesting skies.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Olympus E-M10
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 18mm (36mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f7.1
Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec
Exposure Compensation: -0.3
Image Stabilisation: On